Today is the day to down a cold dark beer or two, sport a crazy green shirt, and wake up with regret the next day. It’s St. Patrick’s Day, which is arguably one of the top five biggest drinking days in the US alone. But all fun and games aside, the debate about how to spell the abbreviated version of “St. Patrick” hasn’t been resolved.
Is it Paddy or Patty?
The word “paddy” derives from the Irish-Anglicized word Pádraig, whereas Patty refers to Patricia or hamburger meat. Pádraig is one of those Irish names that slowly “Americanized” and transformed. It’s also actually a slur that’s been used for ages, just like the terms Mick and Tadhg.
However, “paddy” is actually the correct Irish abbreviation for the name Patrick. Despite its stereotypical undertone, it’s not wrong to say Paddy if it refers to the actual name. All other acceptable terms include pat, packie, podge, pád, and pod… just not patty.
However you spell it, enjoy drinking the day away. Join in the green-lathed festivities, eat some cabbage and corned beef, and wear your leprechaun hats with pride.