A proper noun or proper name is a capitalized noun representing a unique entity as opposed to a common noun, which represents a class of entities or nonunique instances of that class.

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Why is there an indefinite article before “London”? [duplicate]

Two years after his reported Reichenbach Fall demise, Sherlock, who has been cleared of all fraud charges against him, returns with Mycroft's help to a London under threat of terrorist attack. I ...
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British and Canadian but not Coloradan?

In the May 11 issue of this year's New Yorker, the ever-excellent Atul Gawande wrote (emphasis mine): Among those which caught my eye: a British case report on the first 3-D-printed hip implanted ...
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Use of articles with adj.+country name

Often in writings, I see use of the articles "a", the" with country names preceded by adjectives: a strong China, a friendly Cyprus, the rich Paraguay, etc. What rule is that?
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How do names of heroes in comics sound to the native? [closed]

For example, names of heroes are: Batman, Superman, Green Lantern, Spiderman, Wolverine, etc. Also names of villains can be included: Joker, Bane, Magneto, etc. (Sorry if I put heroes in villains and ...
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Is there a term for a grammatical construction like “Exhibit A”?

Is there a term for names that consist of a noun or noun phrase followed by an ordinal letter or numeral? For example: Exhibit A The Land Before Time IV Patient Zero Perhaps ordinal proper noun or ...
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47 views

Should we always capitalize Christians, Muslims, etc.? [duplicate]

A christian and a jew went into a bar.... or A Christian and a Jew went into a bar... The former is marked incorrect by microsoft word.
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42 views

Skullcandys or Skullcandies? [closed]

'Skullcandy' is a plural noun but can also refer to a product, so will the plural be Skullcandys or Skullcandies?
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What is the difference between 'Muslim" and 'Islamic'?

I have seen 'Muslim' and 'Islamic' both used as adjectives to describe things relating to Islam. Is there a nuanced difference between the two words? I know that 'Muslim' can also be used as a noun, ...
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105 views

In the UK which of the following regions should have capital letters? [closed]

In the UK, which of the following regions, none of which have any administrative significance, should be given capital letters? I have arranged them according to my own inclinations. With capitals ...
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When would “mom/dad” require capital letter in writing? [duplicate]

I understand the capitalization rule for nouns, proper nouns require a capital letter. Also, I should begin a new sentence with a capital letter. When & why "mom/dad" requires a capital letter ? ...
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Is it grammatically correct to use “baby” as a proper noun

A lot of baby books and products use the word baby as you would a proper noun. For example "when lying baby down in the cot" instead of "when lying your baby down in the cot". Another example from a ...
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Title for student organization

I'm updating the website for my student organization. Link. Officially, we are the Texas A&M University Student Branch of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. The banner at the ...
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70 views

Writing and speaking duplicated words

A recent workplace conversation prompted this question. Red Hat, the software company behind a popular Linux distribution, came by the office and everyone got some random trinkets, including a number ...
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92 views

Proper ways to refer to New York City [closed]

Excluding the myriad nicknames of the city, I've seen it called both "New York City" and "New York" in contexts where it was not ambiguous that the city, and not the state, was being referred to. I ...
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176 views

Odd possessive form of a proper name: Why does Dryden write “Lord Nonsuch his” instead of “Lord Nonsuch’s” but “Bibber’s” instead of “Bibber his”?

While researching a question posed on EL&U, I came across this list of the characters in John Dryden’s The Wild Gallant (1663), from a 1735 collection of Dryden’s works: DRAMATIS PERSONAE. ...
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Does the abbreviation for Saint in a church name require a period?

In referring to a local church, does the name "St Giles" require a period after the "St"? I was told that to add a period confuses it with the abbreviation for street.
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341 views

Why do the names of so many places end in -ia?

Many countries, continents, states, and cities have an English name ending in ‘-ia’: India, Indonesia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Asia, Alexandria, Philadelphia, California, … What ...
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In film reviews/essays about a book or film, does the title of the movie/book always have to be highlighted/put in italics?

In film reviews/essays about a book or film, does the title of the movie/book always have to be highlighted/put in italics? I know that at the start you have to put the title in italics, e.g.: ...
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44 views

How to mention a course name in an essay? [closed]

I searched this online, and I found only a single site with information regarding how to mention a course name in an essay. There were two conflicting answers: If you prefer to (or need to) ...
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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
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Were points of the compass always written with capital letters?

@bamboo has indicated that in the 1960s in Britain teachers insisted that points of the compass - North, South, East and West always be written with capital letters irrespective of context. From my ...
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1answer
205 views

Why is 'Middlesbrough' so spelled?

Why is the English town of Middlesbrough so spelled, and why is the first 'o' of borough missing, as it is not with such as Scarborough, Peterborough, Knaresborough, etc. I note that there are towns ...
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Why is Lord Alfred Tennyson often written as Alfred Lord Tennyson?

Why is Lord Alfred Tennyson often written as Alfred Lord Tennyson? This occurs with and without a comma after Alfred: Alfred, Lord Tennyson and Alfred Lord Tennyson. Should Lord precede the entire ...
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1answer
159 views

Should I capitalize “bible” in “the Christian Bible”? “the Discordian Bible”?

"The Bible" is typically used to refer to the collection of holy books of the Christian faith. It's a proper noun and it gets capitalised. However, "bible" can also be used as a common noun, in ...
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Are software titles italicized?

The titles of freestanding works (books, movies, plays, albums, etc.) are italicized; smaller parts within these works (chapters in a book, articles in a magazine, songs within an album) are not (they ...
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When did we stop translating proper names?

It used to be that one would just translate a proper name that was in another language into English when referring to that entity. For example, William the Conqueror, Christopher Columbus, King ...
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Why “Jesu” rather than “Jesus” in this carol?

Why does this bit of O Come, All Ye Faithful use Jesu rather than Jesus? Yea, Lord, we greet thee Born this happy morning Jesu, to thee be glory given Am I right in my thinking that Jesus is ...
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91 views

How to handle non-standard capitalization in formal letters

I am writing a letter to apply for entry into a graduate-level university program through my company. I am struggling on how to write the name of the company in the letter. The company's trademark is ...
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Are particular seasons proper nouns?

Should fall be capitalised in the following? If yes, is it because Fall 2011 is a proper noun? Where should an app be released in Fall 2011? Context. In a Wikipedia article, Avatar (2009 ...
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City names with articles

Typically we don't use articles with city names, e.g. "Seattle" and not "the Seattle." I know at least one exception though which is The Hague. Are there any other city names which we use with the ...
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67 views

Is the name of Google's design language “material design” a proper noun?

Material design is a design language developed by Google. A design language is an overarching scheme or style that guides the design of a complement of products or architectural settings. Now is ...
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295 views

Guidelines for adding 's after name of company ending in s [duplicate]

How about adding 's to the name of a company that ends in s for a possessive? Is it the same guideline (go by how it would be pronounced)? Thanks.
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indefinite article plus proper name in organizational (i.e. business or bureaucracy) contexts

The use of the indefinite article with a proper name occurs often in business or organizational speech-contexts: We're lucky to have a Bill Jones to get the job done. The article plus proper ...
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noun adjunct order with proper noun

Given a proper noun, "Widget", should a noun adjunct come before or after the proper noun? Consider: "Windows" operating system and a noun adjunct applying to it: Enterprise Windows This, to ...
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199 views

Why 'the' in front of a company name [closed]

The sentence I have written is "IBM team uses CVS for storing the source code of the project". Should I add "The" in front of the the word "IBM". I am advised to do like that. Is it correct?
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If you called someone named “Shelly” “Shels” for short, would you spell it “Shels” or “Shells?” [closed]

Or Kelly -- "Kels" or "Kells?" Is there a rule for this? If it's just a judgement call, I'm inclined to go with one "l" as both "Shells" and "Kells" have potentially confusing homonyms. I'm talking ...
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Mars orbits Sun [duplicate]

Why do we call the star in our solar system "The Sun" when all other celestial bodies are addressed simply as Jupiter, Neptune, or Sagittarius A Star? Ex: The Saturn has many rings. Incorrect Ex: ...
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45 views

Plural possessive of a family name [closed]

If I want to say that I spent the night at the house that belongs to the Johnsons, which of the following structures is correct: I spent the night at the Johnson's. or I spent the night at the ...
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What does the most common usage of 'Korea' mean in modern-day English-speaking world?

On Meta.Travel.SE, we have a debate whether our 'Korea' tag should be mapped to 'South Korea'. One of the answers - from the moderator who made the synonym mapping - is that common usage of the word ...
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Why does Germany's English name differ from its German name?

Germany in German is Deutschland and the language is Deutsch. I'm used to words being anglicized, but why is there a complete replacement in this case?
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Capitalization: when does a phrase become a proper noun?

This is a question on capitalization. Proper nouns are capitalized. But how can I tell which parts of a term constitute a proper noun? Take, for example, the nickname for traveler's diarrhea (sorry, ...
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596 views

Is the word language in this context a proper noun?

My phrase is "Spanish language TV spend" with respect to advertising on Spanish language TV ads. In this context, should the l in language be capitalized?
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5answers
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Using the definite article before a country/state name

The Punjab is a rich state. Is it correct to use the before Punjab?
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589 views

Do I need “the” before the name of my university in the header? [duplicate]

Do I need "the" before the name of my university in the header? Header: Politechnika Wroclawska - name of university in my language (the Wroclaw University of Technology) - translated name ...
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1answer
164 views

University names? [duplicate]

I have some questions concerning names of university. What is the difference between "The Poznan University of Life Sciences" and "Poznan University of Life Sciences"? Are there any grammatical ...
2
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1answer
628 views

Why do we use the article “the” with the Matterhorn (a mountain)?

The rule is that we don't use an article before the name of an individual mountain, only with the name of a mountain range. So why do we say "the Matterhorn" (a mountain in the Pennine Alps)?
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Are there diagnostic tests to distinguish between proper and common nouns?

Are there some fill-in-the-blank type questions that, if one were to fill in the blank and it sounded right to a fluent speaker then it would have to be a proper noun (or it would have to be a common ...
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Family name pluralization

When pluralizing family (last) names that also happen to be common English words, does the pluralization follow the same rules as the common word? For example, "the Smith family" can be pluralized as ...
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Pluralization of proper nouns: regular or irregular? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Family name pluralization If a proper noun is a homograph of a common noun, is the proper noun subject to the same usage and form rules as the common noun, especially if ...