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Hi all,

In formal writing (e.g. correspondence between two mayors), when you conclude a letter, which of these is more acceptable?

"I extend to you my warmest regards."
"I give you my warmest regards."

I was translating a memo from one mayor to another, and I wrote "give" without giving it a second thought, but the woman from the city administration wrote back and said that I should have written "extend".

Now, Google search says that "give" is far more frequent, but the results are not relevant enough because I cannot filter only formal letters, so any input will be appreciated.

Looking forward to an expeditious response, I GIVE you my kindest regards,
Dejan
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Hi,
I'd say the normal terms are 'offer' and 'extend'.

'Give' is not idiomatic here, probably because it sounds less polite. It sounds like the other person has no choice in the matter, but must accept what is being 'given'.

Best wishes, Clive
Comments  
I prefer the version with "extend". I don't think "give" is technically wrong, but "extend" seems to better suit the formal nature of the sign-off.
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My understanding of the version with "extend" was that you send regards to someone via someone else (extend my regards to your boss), because of the other sense of the word, meaning stretching and expanding, and that's why I still root for "give" Emotion: smile
Dejanm83
My understanding of the version with "extend" was that you send regards to someone via someone else (extend my regards to your boss), because of the other sense of the word, meaning stretching and expanding, and that's why I still root for "give" Emotion: smile


I don't think of the meaning of "extend" as restricted in that way. At http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/extend it gives the definition "to make the offer of; proffer" which seems to fit the bill here.
 Clive's reply was promoted to an answer.
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I do agree with your idea too that "extend" is meant for a more formal use in official language.