Using Superscript cross on wedding invitations to indicate Groom’s Parents

I have read through the posts already here about deceased parents, but I still have a question….

My fiancé’s parents are both deceased and they were also divorced. I read somewhere that in lieu of using

“the son of the late Mr John Doe and the late Mrs. Jane Smith”

their passing could be indicated by a superscript cross next to their names as this is an old fashion way of doing this and more proper.

Is this correct?

You help in this situation is greatly appreciated! Thanks!

Nancy Tucker

Hello Dmchina94, the groom’s parents would not be mentioned on the invitation. The invitation is issued by the parents of the bride when they are hosting the wedding. The deceased parents can be mentioned on the wedding program.

I have never heard of the superscript indicator.

Brandi Hamerstone,
Owner/Senior Wedding Planner All Events Planned

I am on the same page with Nancy. The groom’s parents would only be mentioned on an invitation if there were hosting an event. If you are referring to using them in an announcement of your wedding, that is a different subject. On invitations, there would be no mention.
I tried to research the superscript cross next to the name of a deceased person, even online, and wasn’t able to find any reference to that. I’m not sure where that idea came from, but I don’t recommend using it since most, if not all, would not be familiar with that concept.


Thanks for your help on this.

Is there a particular reason as to why they should not be mentioned on the invitation? My fiance and I feel that not mentioning them would be disrespectful.

I understand that if they were listed first, it would indicate they are hosting, which would not be possible. But since my parents are hosting, they get listed first…like I have listed below, and there is only a mention of who his parents are, but no indication of them hosting.

Mr. and Mrs. John A. Smith
request the honor of your presence
at the marriage of their daughter
Jamie Beth
Brady James Jones
son of the late Mr. Jim Jones and
the late Mrs. Jane Doe

Again I appreciate your help!


Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites

Not mentioning them wouldn’t necessarily be disrespectful. What does the groom think? What would he like?

Your wording above is fine since it doesn’t appear as deceased people are inviting.

Rebecca Black, Etiquette By Rebecca

I agree. You can mention them as you have here. And, I too haven’t heard of superscript.


Perfect! Thanks for your help.

Brandi Hamerstone,

In wanting to only provide the best advice to anyone who post, this information was provided by an invitation company, who saw the advice and contacted me to let me know this interesting tidbit-

“The Hispanic tradition, on the other hand, does include the name of a deceased parent. If the deceased parent is the bride’s father, her mother’s name appears alone on the first line and her father’s name, followed by a small cross if Christian or a Star of David if Jewish, appears on line two. One note of caution: Your guests may not be familiar with this custom and may not understand the meaning of it.”

So, you were definitely going in the right line of thinking when you suggested that you did see this style somewhere before. A good piece of information for all of us.