How to Properly Address a Letter to Two Men
29 SEP 2017
Addressing correspondence to two men is simpler than it first appears. Their names are either on two separate lines or on one line, depending on their status as roommates or a couple. The rules for correspondence have not changed; etiquette experts such as Emily Post, Miss Manners and Steve Petrow have only clarified the details.
1 Addressing an Envelope to Siblings
When addressing an envelope to two brothers living at the same address, put each brother's name on a separate line. Thus, the first line is "Mr. Adam Jones" and the second line is "Mr. James Jones." Put the names in either age order, with the oldest brother first, or in alphabetical order.
2 Addressing an Envelope to Roommates
When addressing an invitation or envelope to two men who are roommates, each name is on a separate line. The envelope reads "Mr. Jose Arnaz" on the first line and on the second line, "Mr. Joe Brown." Generally, put the names in alphabetical order by last name. However, if you are inviting your friend plus his roommate to an event, put your friend's name on the first line.
3 Unmarried Couple
An unmarried couple who are living together should have mail addressed to both men, placing their names on the same line. An envelope is addressed to "Mr. Alfonzo Pietro and Mr. Charles Smith." Generally, the names are in alphabetical order. However, if one man is your relative or close friend, put his name first unless the couple has a specific preference. When in doubt, ask the couple how they would like their mail addressed.
4 Married Couple
A married gay couple may have definite ideas on how their correspondence should be addressed, so when in doubt, ask them what they'd prefer. When each has kept his name, etiquette expert Steve Petrow recommends following correspondence etiquette rules. Address an envelope to "Mr. Roberto Martinez and Mr. Fred White." If one of the couple took his partner's name in marriage, address the envelope to "Mr. and Mr. Roberto Martinez." Alternately, Miss Manners suggests using the formal plural, Messrs., such as "The Messrs. Roberto and Fred Martinez."
5 Addressing Envelopes With Honorifics
If one of the couple is a doctor, elected official or military member that outranks his husband or his husband is a civilian, that man's name is first on the address. A married couple's mail is addressed to "Dr. Michael Goetz and Mr. George Black" or "First Lieutenant Leonard Sapp and Mr. Ali Quan." If the honorific and two names are too long, place the names on two lines, with "The Honorable Jerome Jeffers" on the first line and his husband's name on the second line, as "and Mr. Anthony Lee."
- 1 Emily Post: Addressing & Sending Wedding Invitations
- 2 Miss Manners: Don't Overthink Simplicity of Addressing an Envelope
- 3 Emily Post: Guide to Addressing Correspondence
- 4 The Protocol School of Washington: How to Write the Names of Members of the Armed Services on Invitations & How to Address Invitations to Members of the Armed Services