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How to correctly punctuate the opening and closing greetings of emails

May 2021

Photo: Miguel Á. Padriñán, Pexels

Hello, goodbye!

We write, send and receive emails practically all round the clock, and consequently, electronic mail is an integral and inevitable part of our everyday lives. Therefore, we thought we'd provide you with a few quick-and-dirty tips on how to open and close your emails in a grammatically correct fashion.

In Danish, the opening and closing greetings are comma-free zones. Accordingly, you should not insert a comma - or a full stop, for that matter - after the opening greeting, regardless of whether you use 'hej', 'kære' or ''allo 'allo'. The line spacing after the opening greeting serves as a sign. Therefore, you should also set off the following paragraph with an initial capital.

 Hej John,

 Hej John.

 Hej John



You should not insert a comma between the greeting and the name either.

 Hej, Paul

 Hej Paul



Finally, don't insert a comma after the closing greeting.




In English, the above-mentioned rules are the opposite in the sense that the use of commas is far more generous.

If you use 'hi' or 'hello' to start off your email, you must insert a comma between the greeting and the name. This, however (and somewhat contrary to logic), is not the case if you use 'dear'.

 Hi, Ringo,

 Dear Ringo,



The closing greeting requires a comma, too.

 Best regards,
     The Fab Four