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How is "Messrs" pronounced?

The meaning is the plural of "Mister", right?

Does that mean that "Misters" is not a word?

Is "Messrs" a word that is more commonly used in England than the United States?

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Messrs is often used by (British Commonwealth) lawyers and proprietors of older establishements, as in "Messrs Jones and Hawthorne". It's still very common in some parts of the world. Also, as a point of interest, some lawyers also like to use the postfix Esq. as in "Richard Jones, Esq." –  Gilead Feb 18 '11 at 16:40
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3 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

It is pronounced Mess-ers derived from the French plural messieurs, while Mr comes from master. Its use is correct but fairly uncommon: Mr Smith and Mr Jones is more usual than Messrs Smith and Jones; Misters Smith and Jones is extremely rare while Mrs Smith and Jones would suggest a sex-change.

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In that vein, do you know how "Mme." is pronounced? Do English speakers usually pronounce it "Mademoiselle", or some other way? –  Uticensis Feb 18 '11 at 19:08
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@Rhodri No, it is I who is in fact wrong -- Mlle. is the true abbreviation for mademoiselle (I just looked it up). Incidentally, what I was really asking was whether people said the whole thing out loud, or just mumbled "Em-Em-Eee", or something. –  Uticensis Feb 18 '11 at 19:59
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Does that mean that "Misters" is not a word?

The plural of Mister is used; you can find sentences like the following:

The gold medals they won at earlier races aren't the only thing that Misters Hedrick and Cheek have in common.

 

Is "Messrs" a word that is more commonly used in England than the United States?

The NOAD describes Messrs. as dated or chiefly British.

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And so... what is "NOAD" ? –  Cyberherbalist Oct 1 '13 at 22:38
    
It's the New Oxford American Dictionary, the Oxford dictionary for American. –  kiamlaluno Oct 2 '13 at 0:00
    
Ah ha! I figured it had to be New Oxford, but the "A" was a big mystery. Thankyou. –  Cyberherbalist Oct 2 '13 at 16:11
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I do not think you would find "Messrs" used in speech except for comic effect. Its use now is pretty well restricted to addressing envelopes - and probably only from old-fashioned organisations.

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