Questions tagged [honorifics]

For questions about the use titles or forms of address, whether in everyday usage or in formal settings.

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41
votes
7answers
54k views

What are appropriate gender-agnostic alternatives to sir/ma'am?

In a situation where I need to quickly address someone I don't know, how can I do so without using gendered language? For example, as a retail worker, if a customer was to leave their credit card ...
12
votes
6answers
2k views

How should one deal with overly familiar serving staff?

This question is very culturally specific to the United Kingdom. Social and age deference is waning in the UK, this may be a matter of personal opinion as to whether that is a desirable trend. Many ...
13
votes
5answers
765 views

Is it impolite to not use a religious honorific when speaking to a religious leader?

There are occasions when I have discussions with religious leaders (clergy and otherwise) of various faith groups. Titles such as reverend and rabbi, are generally applied to such individuals. My ...
8
votes
1answer
647 views

As an outsider to Korean culture, how do I work within the age system?

My understanding of Korean culture is that everyone basically knows everyone else's age. This is essential when speaking Korean because the language changes based on your social status. As an ...
23
votes
6answers
14k views

When should I use Mrs. or Ms. in emails?

When I am writing emails, I prefer to use either Mr., Mrs., or Ms. when addressing the recipient's name. When I am addressing a woman, I may not always know their marital status and don't know whether ...