Dear Sir or Madam of....

Discussion in 'English Only' started by nurdug51, Apr 27, 2010.

  1. nurdug51 Senior Member

    I know that you start a business letter with the words
    Dear Sir or Madam,...

    Imagine you know the name of the company (XZ) but you don't know the name of the people in charge of your problem.

    Is it possible (or usual) to write:

    Dear Sir or Madam of XZ,

    ..... ???
  2. No.

  3. Greyfriar

    Greyfriar Senior Member

    No, nurdug51.

    The name and address of the company should be written on the top left hand side of the letter. Below that, 'Dear Sir or Madam'.
  4. nurdug51 Senior Member


    In German you could find something like

    Dear Sir or Madam of the XZ team,

    in an informal business e-mail.
  5. Greyfriar

    Greyfriar Senior Member

    I have never met this in English.
  6. Neither have I.

    I would write

    The Director of the XY team,

    Dear Sir or Madam,

  7. mnolan90 Member

    Salamanca, Spain
    English - Ireland
    I would write "To whom it may concern"
  8. Packard

    Packard Senior Member

    USA, English
    If I were writing to WordReference, I would put the title of the person I wished to reach at the top, and any of the options below in the salutation. My preference would be to use the title. But in most cases a phone call will get the director's name and that would be ideal.

    Director of Moderators
    1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
    Washington, DC 19192

    Dear Director,


    Dear Sir/Madam,


    Dear Sir or Madam,
  9. panjandrum

    panjandrum Occasional Moderator

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    You surprise me.
    Business letters very rarely begin like this.

    Are you writing this letter personally or on behalf of the company you work for? If it's for the company, then you need to follow their standard practice for this kind of letter. If you don't know, ask someone.

    If it is a letter from you, as an individual, to XZ, then you have a lot more choice.
    In addition to the excellent suggestions above, you could consider beginning the letter with:
    Dear XZ,
    I use this form frequently because I have a personal dislike for the "Dear Sir or Madam" form and it is often impossible to discover a name.

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