Submitted by Belinda Mellor on June 5, 2012

Terms of endearment - would it be correct/incorrect to use a capital letter?

For example, ‘Hello, dear, how are you?’ or ‘Hello, Dear, how are you?’ (Darling, Sweetheart, etc.) Is either absolutely correct/incorrect. I have tended to favour the capitalised form (though not if using the term ‘my dear’, ‘my love’, or whatever) until now but it has recently been questioned and I cannot fully justify my usage. Thank you all, in anticipation.

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I think that you have been correct. I would see the endearment as a substitute for the person's name and as such should be capitalized--much like one capitalizes Mother, but not my mother.

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