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Re: Courtesy Titles: Important or Overblown?


 Amongst the plain people, calling each other by courtesy titles is considered putting on airs, and not properly showing "gelassenheit." Therefore , school teachers are called "Teacher Erma" or amongst the Conservative Mennonites or Beachy Amish, Sister Erma, etc. If you look at the Amish newspapers, women are often referred to by their husband's first name, then their first name, then the last name, as in Lawrence Erma Miller. This is because these closely interwoven groups share common last names. There are lots of Mennonite Detweilers ,for example, so to differentiate one Erma Detweiler from another,they insert the husband's first name.  I have not come across many "plain" women who refer to themselves as Mrs. Anybody, but I am not familiar with customs outside of PA.  Susan


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