Baronet  – Image rights istock

A baronetcy is an hereditary dignity, the holder of which is accorded the prefix of 'Sir' and the suffix of 'Baronet' to his name. The suffix is abbreviated in correspondence, usually to 'Bt', but the more old-fashioned 'Bart' is still sometimes used.

Many Scottish baronets use their territorial titles in conjunction with their surnames. In this case 'Bt' should appear at the end, eg Sir Archibald Grant of Monymusk, Bt.

Ecclesiastical, armed forces and ambassadorial ranks should precede Sir: for example, The Rev Sir John Brown.

A baronet who is also a privy counsellor is styled The Rt Hon Sir John Brown - the letters PC are unnecessary since the Rt Hon is sufficient indication. All other letters after the name follow 'Bt':

Lt-Gen Sir John Brown, Bt, KCB, CBE, DSO
; or, The Rev Sir John Brown, Bt, DCL

In social usage it is not uncommon to combine styles emanating from other sources with titles conferred by the Sovereign (eg Alderman Sir John Smith and Professor Sir William Brown), although this practice is deprecated by purists.

How to address a Baronet

The recommended (social) style of address is as follows:

Beginning of letter

Dear Sir John

End of letter

Yours sincerely


Sir John Stratton, Bt

Joint form of address

Sir John and Lady Stratton

Verbal communication

Sir John (or Sir John Stratton if distinction is necessary, or on introduction)

Invitation/Joint invitation*

Sir John Stratton/Sir John and Lady Stratton

Description in conversation

Sir John Stratton

List of Directors or  Patrons

Sir John Stratton

Place card

Sir John Stratton

Legal document

Sir John Stratton Baronet

*Note that, traditionally, invitations to a married couple, when sent to their home address, are addressed to the wife alone, with both names being inscribed on the invitation card. It has become increasingly acceptable, however, to address the envelope with both names.

How to Address...


Wife of a Baronet

Widow and Former Wife of a Baronet

Family of a Baronet



Forms Of Address

the debrett's 500

the debrett's 500

the Debrett's 500

the Debrett's 500

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