The word is built up from two words, ember (human) and öltő (stitcher). It’s a really poetic word, because its original meaning comes from the idea::: as in sewing the stitches are twisted and stitched together, the same way are stitched together (sutured) the lives, the existence of people, the existence of mankind into a neverending and ceaseless thread.

“Az emberöltőben az öltés képzete él: ahogy a varrásban az öltések, úgy öltődnek egymásba az emberéletek, együtt alkotva az emberiség létének szakadatlan szövedékét.”

Emberöltő is used to define a time interval, whilst a new generation is born, whilst a newborn grows up and becomes a parent. It’s usually 25-35 years.

The older definition, which was used some centuries ago, defines the word as the average time interval which covers the whole life of a person. Back than it used to be at most 50 years, nowadays it’s around 65-75 years.


nemzedék [ˈnɛmzɛdeːk] – generation
generáció [ˈgɛnɛraːtsioː] – generation
korosztály [ˈkorostaːj] – generation; age-group
korcsoport [ˈkortʃˈoport] – generation; age-group
ember [ˈɛmber] – human; person
öltés [ˈølteːʃ] –stitch; pin
összeölteni [ˈøssɛøltɛni] – to stitch together; to suture
ölteni [ˈøltɛni] – to stitch
öltő [ˈøltøː]
1) stitcher (person or machine)
2) stitching


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