Monday, November 22, 2010

Writing letters

Can anybody tell me if it is correct to capitalise the first letter of the first word, immediately after the salutation on a letter?

My understanding is it is not. For example:

Dear Sir,


further to our discussion, we attach herewith a detailed proposal.

MS Word will usually capitalise the "F" in "further". I don't think this is right because the sentence starts with "Dear Sir" and ends with "proposal". It does not start with "Further"

Does anyone have an opinion?

Just had to redo about seven letters because of the perceived error.


T said...

hmm i've never thought about that. i would think the F needs to be capitalized since Dear Sir is a salutation, and not the start of the sentence.

santhoshi said...

I would capitalise the Further i think. I dont know maybe habit.

After the subject I always start with a capital.

Graeme said...

The problem here is that you are inserting a title in the middle of a sentence: how does that make grammatical sense? The only way I can think of is to treat it as parenthesised, in which case there should still be no capital.

A word-processor is not smart enough to get this sort of thing right, just turn off whatever auto correction is doing this. Incidentally, when you are using indented paragraphs does MS word still indent the first para after a title? Open Office still gets it Wrong, Lyx always got it right.

Scrumps said...

I would capitalise but I am using T's route of thinking! :)

Jack Point said...

Thanks everybody.

Graeme, I don't use indented paragraphs so I'm not really sure. Usually it automatically uses whatever formatting used immediately above.

thekillromeoproject said...

I tend to agree with T, the Dear Sir is a form of salutation and not really the start of a sentence.

sittingnut said...

wouldn't capitalize anything if i can help it.

otherwise let word processor do it.

'rules' change. ever seen capitalization in old and not so old books by supposedly good authors in original editions? quite enlightening.

sorry for going off topic and being useless.

Jack Point said...

Never seen capitalisation in old books, must keep a look out, and yes, I see that you never capitalise anything!

Chamira said...

Put a full stop at the end of the 'Re', so Re:yadda yadda. Then you can start with a capital and all is well. A problem side-stepped rather than solved.

Jack Point said...

Thanks Chamira.