This tags is for questions about the use of capital letters in writing.

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6
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1answer
3k views

When to capitalize the name of a season

Which sentence uses the correct capitalization for the name of the season? I will travel in the summer of 2013. or I will travel in the Summer of 2013.
6
votes
2answers
7k views

Are white and black ever capitalized when referring to people

What is the accepted custom regarding capitalization when it comes to "White" and "Black" when referring to race, whether they are being used as nouns or adjectives?
6
votes
2answers
689 views

Why are some words not capitalized in titles?

I understand the how, but the why escapes me completely. After a decent amount of searching on the internet I can only find people talking about how to capitalize a title (or more importantly which ...
5
votes
10answers
2k views

Are there examples of terms named after a person that are no longer capitalized?

Are there any grammatically correct examples of terms named after someone that are no longer capitalized? I know certain brand names have become so ingrained in the lexicon that they are no longer ...
5
votes
10answers
71k views

Should it be “Happy Birthday!” or “Happy birthday!” when used as a two word sentence?

I've always simply written it "Happy birthday!" but my wife recently said that "Birthday" should be capitalized as well. What's grammatically correct?
5
votes
3answers
710 views

Capitalization of “Theorem 1” in mathematics papers

In many mathematics papers I read sentences like "...with an appeal to Theorem 4.5 we get...". Is the capitalization of theorem in this case correct? If it is correct why do we capitalize the word?
5
votes
2answers
6k views

Should 'I' be capitalized or in lower case? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why should the first person pronoun 'I' always be capitalized? I am in a serious doubt here. I just want to know whether to use small or capital letter for ...
5
votes
4answers
9k views

Shouldn’t “Heaven” and “Hell” be capitalized, as they are the names of places?

Shouldn’t Heaven and Hell be capitalized, as they are the names of places?
5
votes
1answer
22k views

Do you capitalize the names of holidays?

I always thought the names of holidays were proper names, and should thus be capitalized "Christmas", "Thanksgiving", etc. However, I recently made a typo when talking about Christmas (Christmsa), and ...
5
votes
1answer
544 views

Correct Usage of Capital Letters

Suppose there is a Department of English (note: the name is not English Department) at Abc University. I want to know the correct use of capital letters in these sentences: The Department of ...
5
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2answers
247 views

Does use-mention distinction warrant breaking conventions?

Does use-mention distinction sometimes warrant breaking the following capitalization and punctuation conventions? American convention recommends placing punctuation within quote marks. Sentences ...
5
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2answers
1k views

Achilles' heel or achilles heel? - Is it proper to lowercase the usage

I was reading an article that uses the phrase "Achilles' heel" to refer to Facebook's acquisition of Instagram, but it was written thus: achilles heel My main question is - was this a bad ...
5
votes
1answer
850 views

Capitalization in “the University has 1000s of students. ”

The University of London is huge. The University/university has 1000s of students. Is it correct to leave out the capital u in the second sentence?
5
votes
1answer
735 views

Initial capitalization of foreign surnames when starting a sentence

In the book, "The Crystal Shard," by R.A. Salvatore, a character is surnamed "de Bernezan." Which of the following complete sentences uses the correct English-language capitalization: de Bernezan ...
5
votes
3answers
869 views

Correct capitalisation of “Machiavellian”?

Does the adjective Machiavellian always have a capital letter? For example: The Machiavellian Iago manipulates Othello into believing his wife, Desdemona, had an affair. Not sure if this is ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

When is correct to capitalise these words?

At the beginning of sentence is a given. Here are some examples for each word. Should any be capitalised? If not, is there any situations where they should? The word "government" The government ...
5
votes
1answer
547 views

Capitalization of “Assembly Language”

This Wikipedia article does not capitalize "assembly language," for understandable reasons. It uses it as an indefinite article, i.e. "an assembly language." But how should it be written when using ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Correct capitalization of words beginning with “e-”

What is the correct capitalization of words beginning with "e-" (like e-mail or e-learning or e-assessment) when used in a title? Is it "E-Learning" or "E-learning" or even "e-Learning"? To clarify: ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

Should broader types be capitalized?

I'm seeing that I get a red squiggle under the words asian and european. When I right-click either, it wants to capitalize the word. I wouldn't think a general type of thing gets capitalized, such as ...
5
votes
1answer
243 views

Her love letters--to and from Daddy--were in an old box,

Her love letters--to and from Daddy--were in an old box, tied with ribbons and stiff, rigid-with-age leather thongs:1918 through 1920;... Why (Daddy) in this sentence was written with a capital D?
5
votes
1answer
595 views

Capitalising the first letter of a reference to God?

like "He", "His", "Thy", "the Creator", "the Omnipotent", etc. What is the origin of this practice? When should I capitalise words like this? for any deity? only the deity of the Abrahamic faiths?
5
votes
2answers
67 views

Universe or universe? [duplicate]

When to use Universe or universe? I'm editing a document where it is "The Creator of the universe". Is it correct?
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Are the names of game tokens capitalized?

Are the names of game tokens considered proper nouns, and hence need to be capitalized? Apparently not for chess, as king, queen, bishop etc. are written in lowercase. But what about games whose terms ...
4
votes
1answer
729 views

Should I capitalise the first letter when a sentence starts with a number?

When starting a sentence with a number, should the first letter be capitalised? For example, 96% Real meat. or 96% real meat.
4
votes
4answers
3k views

Should I capitalize the word 'Web' in this sentence?

A dedicated web server may be required, depending on XXX, YYY, ZZZ, and the total number of concurrent Web users
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Capitalization of “Dictator”

I'm wondering whether the word dictator should be capitalized. Is it just an adjective and not an (official) title?
4
votes
1answer
4k views

Should I capitalize “chemical engineering department”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Correct Usage of Capital Letters To capitalize “department” or not Which of these sentences is correct? The chemical engineering department told me ...
4
votes
3answers
56k views

Should the words “city”/“state”/“province” be capitalized (if not followed by the name of the city)?

When referring to an entity like a government body, should it be capitalized if referring to is by classification(?). E.g., if I write: The City of New York requires us to get a building permit. ...
4
votes
1answer
6k views

Should words be capitalized for being religious terms?

While googling about whether "atheist" should be capitalized, and skimming past posts by people blogging about atheism rather than about English grammar, I came across ...
4
votes
2answers
504 views

Why are I and O always capitalized, but a is not?

There are three single-letter words. They are the article a, the pronoun I, and the interjection O. The pronoun I and the interjection O are always capitalized, but the article a follows normal ...
4
votes
4answers
179 views

“Create an Account” or “Create Account”

I have a registration form I want to name. Should I name it:  –  “Create Account”  –  “Create an Account” (or “Create the ...
4
votes
1answer
327 views

What's the etymology of English letter casing terminology?

The popular consensus around the web (i.e., Wikipedia) seems to be that "upper case" and "lower case" originate from typesetting convention of upper and lower drawers for letters, possibly preceded by ...
4
votes
2answers
7k views

When using complete sentences in parenthetical e.g. or i.e. situations, should the first word be capitalized?

In a bulleted list of very technical sentences, where each bulleted item has one or two parenthetical examples or restatements which are complete sentences, should the first letter of each e.g. or ...
4
votes
2answers
34k views

“Masters degree” — capital M or not?

When someone states "I have a Masters in Computer Science" should the word masters have a capital M? I've seen arguments for both and can't determine which is correct.
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Capitalisation of “chess”

When talking about the game of chess do I capitalise or not? If not why not? Example excerpt: I have picked chess as it is a popular, well understood game. Even if the programming unit doesn’t ...
4
votes
4answers
15k views

Should “State” be capitalized on its own?

Say we had the following: Higher Education spending, clout, and influence in New York State is substantial. Within the State’s borders... Should the latter instance of State be capitalized or ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

Why is “biblical” the only proper adjective to not use upper case?

Generally, when an adjective is derived from a proper noun, the adjective also has a capital initial, hence Googleable, Mancunian, British, and Shavian. (In contrast, verbs are not given capitals, ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Yoga terms in English and the capitalization thereof

I'm editing a manuscript in English that contains numerous yoga terms for poses, concepts etc. These are generally derived from Sanskrit, if not actual Sanskrit transliterations. My publisher requires ...
4
votes
1answer
87 views

Is “hoover” capitalised? [duplicate]

In the UK (and sometimes Australia), a vacuum cleaner will be called a hoover, regardless of its brand. Likewise, the verb "to vacuum" is replaced with "to hoover". With a brand name being used in ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Capitalization of “the Company”

I am writing a business plan. It is lengthy, so instead of always mentioning the company by its full name, I will write, "the company provides...". Another writer wants me to capitalize "The ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

How to cite an author who does not capltalize her name if you are beginning a sentence with her name

If you are writing a paper and citing works by an author/researcher who does not capitalize her name, how do you begin a sentence using the author's name?
4
votes
1answer
256 views

Should the first word after a dash used as self-interruption be capitalized?

When writing dialogue, a dash can be used to denote interruption. For example: “Hello, can I ask you about—” “No.” If a character is interrupting themself, should the first word of the ...
4
votes
1answer
6k views

Why is “I” capitalized in the English language, but not “me” or “you”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why should the first person pronoun 'I' always be capitalized? I realize that at one time a lot of nouns in English were capitalized, but I can't understand the ...
4
votes
2answers
218 views

Capital letters in “Theorem”, “Conjecture” etc

This is my first post and as you can probably guess I am a mathematician so I have no clue about grammar. I am writing a mathematical document at the moment and I would appreciate some advice on my ...
4
votes
2answers
408 views

Are pronouns for non-universal divines capitalized?

When following the formal English rule of Reverential Capitals, any reference to God Almighty is capitalized, as are equivalent non-Christian entities such as "Allah" or the neo-pagan "Goddess" (and ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Why Start Each Word in a Title with an Uppercase Letter? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Which words in a title should be capitalized? I'm not a native speaker of English, and I've asked myself a lot why on many (most?) blogs, all words in an article’s ...
4
votes
0answers
135 views

Should you capitalise “eBay” at the beginning of a sentence? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do you capitalize a proper noun such as “iPhone”? Which is correct? On the internet you can buy stuff. eBay is one place where you can buy stuff. ...
3
votes
6answers
12k views

Proper use of “TV”

It seems "TV" is always preferred when used as an abbreviation for "television" in informal writing, but is "tv" ever acceptable? (The capitalization seems to me to place undue emphasis on it.)
3
votes
4answers
6k views

Why is god, a common noun, capitalized? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should the word “God” be capitalized? I thought god is a common noun, but many people capitalize it when it is not the first letter of a sentence or a ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Should “brother” be capitalized in a letter salutation?

John Smith, a member of my congregation, would be addressed as brother in face-to-face conversation. If I write a letter to him, should I capitalize this word? For example, as in: Dear Brother ...