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Dear Sir/Madam vs Dear Sirs

Discussion in 'English Only' started by pollock, Feb 25, 2009.

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  1. pollock Senior Member

    London
    Polish
    I am concerned about invitation Dear Sir/Madam or Dear Sirs I never don't know how to use them correctly and how they reffer to feminine/masculine gender?
     
  2. Suspishio

    Suspishio Senior Member

    Berkshire, UK
    English - England
    Dear Sir = Male recipient

    Dear Madam = Female recipient

    Dear Sir/Madam = You don't know the gender of the recipient

    Hope that's all you need.
     
  3. candy-man

    candy-man Senior Member

    London/Madrid
    Polish/Poland
    Dear Sir- male
    Dear Madam- female
    Dear Sirs- if you´re not sure about the sex of the person you´re directing your letter to or if you´re writing to more than one person.I come across with the impression this one is a little old -fashioned.
     
  4. pollock Senior Member

    London
    Polish
    Thanks a lot.
     
  5. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    New York
    USA - English
    If you are truly old-fahioned, instead of "Dear Sirs:" you would probably write "Gentlemen:". I would not use either one today unless I was sure that I was writing to a group made up exclusively of males.

    I would also prefer "Dear Sir or Madam" to the use of the virgule/slash.
     
  6. candy-man

    candy-man Senior Member

    London/Madrid
    Polish/Poland

    Yesterday I coincidentally found an explanation about this in a book or somewhere else. The author claimed the form Gentelmen is typical in the US.
     
  7. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    New York
    USA - English
    Gentelmen is not a word in English.

    Gentlemen, however, is a word; it is the plural of "gentleman". The word "gentlemen" as a plural of "gentleman" is typical of the entire English speaking world. As a salutation on a letter, though, "Gentlemen" is not very common anywhere today.
     
  8. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
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