I was enraged by the manner in which Gary Otton and Professor Norman Bonney (Letters, 24 December) referred to a clergyman as “Rev Robertson”.
Is nothing sacred? This is an American form of expression – absorbed, no doubt, from films and TV – which is becoming far too prevalent.
It is as ridiculous as the verger in Dad’s Army addressing the vicar as “Your reverence”. The proper style is, of course, “the Reverend Mr Whoever”.
Furthermore, there is no need to stick in “Rev” whenever the clerical gentleman is mentioned. Once his status is established he need only be referred to as “Mr Whoever”.
To do otherwise is like Inspector Bucket (in Bleak House) insisting on addressing his titled interlocutor as “Sir Leicester Dedlock, baronet”.
I call on these gentlemen, Otton and Bonney, and all who similarly transgress, to take note, repent and amend their ways, so that the pure well of English be not defiled.
I remain, Sir, your obedient and pedantic servant.