Man’s or Woman’s Name First When Naming a Building For a Couple?
I am creating a rustic wooden sign for my daughter & her husband for their lake house. I was planning on putting ‘Todd & Bethany’s Lake House’ on the sign, but my friends insists there is a rule that Bethany should be first. Is there a rule on this?
We are dedicating a building to my mother and father. My father is deceased. You write that when you informally write to a couple, the woman’s given name comes first, his name is second. Is that rule still applicable since my father has passed?
—-Is this the correct wording?
——–Dedicated to Jane and John Doe
—————-—-– Sue Naming a Building, Road, or Gallery
Dear DC & Sue,
—-#1) Style Guides: There is an often-repeated rule in forms of address … that when you write a couple’s name on letters, invitations, etc. –– using only the names, not ‘Mr.’ and ‘Mrs.’ –– and both parties use the same family name … you keep ‘his’ name together as a unit:
—-—-Bethany and Todd Wilson
—-Rather than: Naming a Building, Road, or Gallery
—-—-Todd and Bethany Wilson
Other style manuals suggest the reason this is true is – the woman’s name is always first: Bethany before Todd – the ‘ladies first’ rule.
—-#2) In Practice: I observe the names of buildings & galleries seem to be done both ways:
—-Man First: Naming a Building, Road, or Gallery
—-—-Frederick Phineas and Sandra Priest Rose Building
—-—-Robert and Renée Belfer Court for Early Greek Art
—-—-Mary and Michael Jaharis Gallery
—-—-Judy and Michael H. Steinhardt Gallery
—-#3) What to do? I recommend #1. But I won’t fall on my sword to insist #2 is wrong.
When it comes to making donors happy, I suspect the preference of the person donating the money – perhaps the way it was written by them on the donation form – is what decides.
– Robert Hickey Naming a Building, Road, or Gallery