It seems to be common in Algerian English to call strangers "Dear". I've noticed it also from Libyans and Egyptians.
I'd be interested in knowing what people think of this, and how they react to it.
My guess is that most native English speakers would find it annoying in writing, and plain embarassing if it happened in real life.
(I don't mean in a salutation, "Dear Sir", or as an adjective, "my dear friend" which are normal when used appropriately in English. I mean when it's used as "dear can you answer my question?" or "thank you for your answer dear" )
Thanks for your opinions dears
Last edited by riquecohen; 07-Oct-2010 at 15:28. Reason: substitute such for various
I'm from Algeria ... and your notice is really correct !
we often use the word (dear) in our speech ..
I want to say in most Arabic countries we use this word significantly in our conversation and public language!
Perhaps it is a translation of the word "عزيزي" which we use always in our daily lives ....
For example : When I speak with someone ,I tell him:"Thank you for your help dear", "I need your advice, dear" ect ... and rarely mention his/her name !
You can say 'Dear' means sir, or any other person you don't have a close relationship with him ..
It's just a style of speech !
On the forum or in a situation with a non-native speaker, where I know no offence is intended, I don't feel annoyed - but I also think I still find it slightly uncomfortable.
I also think it's not very good practice to ignore it - on this forum, at least, where many members are here to learn the standards of modern English usage.
Last edited by Tullia; 20-Oct-2010 at 12:21.
In some dialects of BrE, such expressions as dear, my dear, love, pet, honey, etc were, until very recently, quite common among the (dare I say it?) lower classes. In these days of political correctness, the use of such expressions is being discouraged. Older men used to be able to address younger female colleagues as my dear. I suspect that if I were to do that these days I would cause offence, and probably be officially reprimanded.