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Unit 3 business correspondense


“Politeness is as much concerned in answering it letters within a reasonable time, as is in returning a bow, immediately.(Lord Chesterfield)

1. Discuss these questions. Look at the typical answers and agree or disagree with them.

1. What salutation should be used in a business letter for a female whose status is unknown or would prefer to remain anonymous?

a) Dear Mr ….

b) Dear Mrs ….

c) Dear Miss ….

d) Dear Ms….

2. What closing should be used if you do not know the name of the person that you are writing to?

a) Yours faithfully

b) Yours sincerely

c) Respectfully yours

d) Regards

3. What is acceptable to start a sentence with in a business letter to make it more formal?

a) And we still hope to sign a contract.

b) However, we still hope to sign a contract.

c) But we still hope to sign a contract.

d) You know we still hope to sign a contract.


1) attachment – приложение к электронному письму

2) body – текст письма

3) comma – запятая

4) complimentary close – комплиментарная концовка

5) county – округ (США); графство (Великобритания)

6) courtesy title – титул по обычаю

7) deliver – доставлять (письмо)

8) (to) embed – вставлять

9) enclosure – приложение к письму

10) envelope – конверт

11) font – вид шрифта

12) full stop – точка

13) inside address/receiver’s address – имя и адрес получателя

14) (to) justify – выравнивать

15) layout – общая схема расположения отдельных частей делового письма

16) letterhead – шапка на фирменном бланке

17) margin – поле бланка

18) postcode – почтовый индекс

19) post town – город с самостоятельным почтовым отделением

20) procurement – снабжение; поставка (оборудования)

21) return address – адрес отправителя

22) recipient – получатель сообщений

23) (to) reject an offer – отклонить предложение

24) reminder – напоминание

25) salutation – приветствие

26) signature – подпись

27) (to) skip – пропускать; опускать

28) space/spacing – пробел; интервал между строк

29) (to) stagger – располагать зигзагообразно

30) subject (main point) – основная тема; содержание (письма)



2. Skim the text to grasp the general idea. Decide if the following statements are true (t) or false (f).

1) Snail-mail and email are the same things.

2) A perfect letter is the easiest one to read.

3) Recipient is a person who writes letters.

4) Those who are not English speakers worry that their writing is not perfect enough for business writing.

Business letters

Business letters are formal paper communications between, to or from businesses and usually sent through the Post Office or sometimes by courier. Business letters are sometimes called "snail-mail" in contrast to email which is faster.

Most people who have an occupation have to write business letters. Some write many letters each day and others only write a few letters over the course of a career. Business people also read letters on a daily basis. Letters are written from a person/group, known as the sender to a person/group, known in business as the recipient.

There are many reasons why you may need to write business letters or other correspondence: to persuade, to inform, to request, to express thanks, to remind, to recommend, to apologize, to congratulate, to reject a proposal or offer, to invite or welcome.

The term "business letter" makes people nervous. Many people with English as a second language worry that their writing is not advanced enough for business writing. This is not the case. An effective letter in business uses short, simple sentences and straightforward vocabulary. The easier a letter is to read, the better. You will need to use smooth transitions so that your sentences do not appear too choppy.

There are many standard types of business letters: Sales letters, Order letters, Complaint letters, Adjustment letters, Inquiry letters, Cover letters, letters of Recommendation etc.

There are certain standards for formatting a business letter, though some variations are acceptable (for example between European and North American business letters). Here are some basic guidelines:

  • Use A4 (European) or 8.5 x 11 inch (North American) paper or letterhead

  • Use 2,5 cm or 1,0 inch margins on all four sides

  • Use a simple font such as Times New Roman or Arial

  • Use 10 to 12 point font

  • Use a comma or a colon after the salutation (Dear Mr. Bond,:)

  • Use “Subject” or “Re”, “RE” if needed so that the reader immediately knows what the letter is about. The subject line is usually placed between the salutation and the body in BrE, in AmE it can also be placed between the recipient’s address and the salutation (Subject: Order No 175/03)

  • Lay out the letter so that it fits the paper appropriately

  • Single space within paragraphs

  • Double space between paragraphs

  • Double space between last sentence and closing (Sincerely, Best wishes…)

  • Leave three to five spaces for a handwritten signature

  • enc: (meaning “enclosure”)

  • Fold in three (horizontally) before placing in the envelope

(по материалам сайта http://www.englishclub.com)

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