Has approved in mail OR has approved on mail- Which one is correct?


Please suggest: Which one is correct? If i am seeking any approval via mail due to any reasons and the person approves, how would I say/write "approved in mail" OR "approved on mail" OR has been "approved by XXXX in mail/on mail".


The confusion is related to the use of preposition "In" & "On".


Please assist

edited Sep 18 '12 at 19:44 Dharmesh New member

1 answer


I would say (and write) that it was approved by Jane Doe in a letter dated September 18, 2012.


Mail is too general of a term to be referred to in this sense.  If you are looking to prove a point, or provide some documentation, being very specific about who (Jane), what (letter), and when (date) is more useful information than how it was sent (mail or email). 


In the mail means that something is on its way.  (The check is in the mail.)  On the mail would mean you have a pile of mail and something is sitting on top of it.  Note that there is an article before the word mail.


Here's an easy way to figure out whether to use in or on.  Replace in with "inside of" or "within".  Imagine there is a box or wall around the thing.  If you  are inside of the box or wall it is in.  Replace on with "on top of" where one thing is sitting on top of the other.


In your sentence, you want to relate the words of approval with the letter that was mailed.  The words are within the letter, not sitting on top of the letter.


I hope that helps.

link edited Sep 18 '12 at 21:58 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

Thank you Patty for your kind education. Actually, working in an orgnaization, I often have to
seek approvals and have later to display via verbal/written communication. My intent is to be
completely ascertained of using the correct word/sentence.

However, according to you, if someone approves any actions/instance in mail/e-mail I should be using "approved by Jane in mail" instead of saying/writing "approved by Jane on mail". Also, the article should be placed before "mail/e-mail". (Correct me at both the places, If i am in the

"approved on mail"

DharmeshSep 19 '12 at 15:48

We would use letter or email, but not mail. Mail is not the correct terminology. "In the mail" carries a different meaning than what you are trying to say. It should be "in a letter" if it was mailed through the post office, or "in an email." Either way, "in" is the correct preposition. "On" is incorrect. Regarding the article, yes, it is placed before the noun.

Patty TSep 19 '12 at 18:52

Thanks a Ton Patty for your deep clarifications...

DharmeshSep 20 '12 at 16:23

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