(Closed) Titles on Invitations, Escort Cards, etc.

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
1696 posts
Bumble bee

@kay01: It depends on how stuffy you are being, and on how proud your friends are of their titles. The basic rule, overriding all others, is that you address your guests using the title and form of name that they prefer, and resort to rules only when you don’t know their preferences.

In general social usage, the title is used with the surname only, and the first name is not used (unless they are a junior member of the family holding the same surname and title as a more senior member — then you use the title with the given name and leave off the surname).

“Esquire” in the United Staes is used as a professional (not social) convention, and is not used on social correspondence.

A PhD, or a JD, is an academic title, not a social title. It is correctly used only at academic functions and college dinners. At non-academic social functions a PhD is correctly addressed simply as “Mr Smith”. Nowadays most PhDs prefer to be addressed as “Dr” so you follow their preference — which has become so common that NOT using the Dr title is a sign that the PhD in question is an etiquette snob (a snobbery that I happen to admire).

A medical doctor is properly addressed as “Doctor Smith”, not as “Doctor Jane Smith” nor as “Mrs Smith M.D.”

At civilian social functions, only military personnel above the rank of Lieutenant Colonol are properly addressed by their rank. Nowadays however nearly all military personnel prefer that you use their rank so you follow their preference. Retired personnel may continue to use their rank and on social correspondence the “, Retired” distinction is not used.

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