sweet nothings


romantic talk

STATISTICS

IN THE PRESS

"LADIES' MAN Pete Wicks whispers SWEET NOTHINGS to mystery brunette on a loved-up rickshaw ride in London”

Lucy Murgatroyd - Sun headline (24 December 2021)

Did you
know?

sweet nothings
noun phrase

- If someone whispers sweet nothings to you, they quietly say nice, loving, and flattering things to you

Collins Dictionary


WORD ORIGIN

The earliest known written example illustrating the origin of the term "sweet nothings" was found in the London magazine 'Belgravia' in a poem by Mary Elizabeth Braddon. Dated 1776, the poem included a stanza that read: "As low he bend o'er her he loves so dear, to whisper some sweet nothing in her ear."


SWEET TALKING

The expression "sweet nothings" (usually plural) is often used in conjunction with the phrase "whisper sweet nothings". "Sweet is used in the context of something nice and "nothings" refers to words that actually have no substance, but whose sole purpose is to express affection and evoke emotions.

How many of these sweet phrases do you know?

- to sweet talk someone = to persuade someone to do something by saying nice things to them (Don’t let the salesman sweet talk you into buying those extras that you don’t need.)

- a sweet deal = a very good business agreement or arrangement (He got a sweet deal on that new car)

- a sweet tooth = to have a great liking for sugary foods (I have a sweet tooth, three spoons of sugar in my coffee please.)

- sweet dreams = to wish someone a good sleep (Good night children. Sweet dreams!)

- short and sweet = pleasantly short (Keep your presentations short and sweet, especially when addressing the board)

- home sweet home = to express pleasure upon returning home (I've been on the road for a whole month, now finally,… home sweet home!)


SYNONYMS

- "sweet nothings" or "terms of endearment” include such phrases as:

angel face, apple of my eye, babe, baby, bibi, buttercup, cuddle bug, cutie-pie, darling, dearest, dearie, doll, ducks, ducky, dumpling, fair-haired boy, heart’s desire, heart-throb, honey, honey-pie, honey bun, honey bunch, kitten, light of my life, lovebird, love bug, lover boy, lovey, munchkin, number one, numero uno, peaches, pet, poppet, precious, prince, pumpkin, snooky, snuggle bug, sugar pie, sunshine, sweet, sweetheart, sweetie, sweetie pie, tootsie, tootsie-pie, treasure, true love, valentine


SMUGGLE OWAD into an English conversation, say something like:

"It’s quite a challenge to translate SWEET NOTHING phrases in different languages – how would you say 'Knuffelschatzi' in English?"


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