Thirteen ordinary words that you will never hear the Royal Family say

In true royal style, there are some words that are clearly not fit for a Queen.

In fact, there are more than a dozen phrases that are too improper to be spoken by Royals.

So if you ever find yourself in the presence of Elizabeth II, and don’t know what to say, make sure you avoid any of these terms.

Social anthropologist Kate Fox has previously explained in Readers Digest what vocabulary is banned – and the surprising reasons why.


In many parts of the UK the evening meal is referred to as tea, but this term is typically associated with the working class.

The upper class – like the Royal Family – traditionally call this meal dinner, or even supper.


The Royals don’t watch their portion sizes to lose weight, instead they refer to it as ‘helping’ sizes.


You might think pardon is a very polite and formal thing to say when we need something repeating.

But think again. The Royals consider this a curse word – say sorry instead.


Not that you’d want to be speaking about loos, but if you do, avoid toilet. Ask for a lavatory if you’re in need in the palace.


Not sure how this could come up in conversation, but avoid the term patio – Royals refer to their landscaping as the terrace.

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The living room, front room or lounge – we all have different names for the main room in a house. The Royal Family on the other hand refer to their space as the drawing room, or sitting room. Avoid lounge to be in keeping with Royal protocol.


Which brings us couch. To stay 'Royal' and upper class, call the chairs the sofa – avoid coach and settee.


Don’t call it aftershave, and do not call it perfume. Instead, refer to your scent – it may seem a bit animalistic, but it’s the Royal way.

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Although you might be trying your hardest to seem it, definitely do no refer to people as ‘posh’. Replace posh with smart, Readers Digest reported.


There are many different terms for a function – a do, a get-together, a gathering. And, surprisingly, Royals will just want to hear you call it a party.


At your party, avoid referring to your nibbles as refreshments. According to Fox, referring to it as food and drink is fine.


According to Fox, dessert is a term that is too American for the Royals – instead, refer to the after dinner sweet treat as pudding.

Mum and Dad

And not one for a Royal subject, as we would refer to the Queen as Your Majesty, but don’t act too surprised if you catch Charles or Anne referring to her as Mummy. Mummy and Daddy are traditionally common for the upper class, the anthropologist said.

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