Is there a corresponding word to go with capital to mean lower-case?

  • Computer geeks informally say "no caps"
    – user3065
    Apr 7, 2011 at 16:22

6 Answers 6


There are capital letters and small letters.

In a formal or technical context I would use "lower-case" to avoid seeming like a young child talking about big letters and small letters.


In typography and calligraphy the corresponding terms are majuscule and minuscule:

See the Wikipedia entry on Capital letters. Minuscule also serves as the counterpart of capital.


For this analogy question, small is the word you are looking for:

uppercase : capital :: lowercase : small

small (adj): lowercase

Definition 1b of small in Merriam-Webster

  • Wow. I had no idea.
    – jbelacqua
    Apr 8, 2011 at 5:50

Minuscule is also the word for them, although I doubt most people would know what you were talking about.


No, there is no equivalent (Like Pedi-Letter or something "Foot" related instead of "Head" related.)

You have the following options

  1. lowercase
  2. lowercase letter
  3. minuscule
  4. small letter

Although I do not recommend 3 unless you are amongst typographers, nor 4 (you will sound childish).

  • 3
    I think you will sound just as childish in North America if you use 4
    – Kevin
    Apr 7, 2011 at 13:46
  • @Kevin - Fixed :D
    – jsj
    Apr 7, 2011 at 13:51
  • shoeital? sockital? May 5, 2022 at 6:02

The word is actually "uncapitalized". It is "Upper case" to "capital letter" as "lower-case" is to "uncapitalized letter".

(Uncapitalized is an adjective, so "uncapitalized word". There is no noun form, "Uncapital" or anything like, as far as I know, though "non-capital" might be intuitive in context)

Granted, it's a bit clunky - one reason uncapitalized letters are usually referred to as "letters" with no modification. But when it is necessary to specify, one might end up saying something like "those words are actually uncapitalized", or else "when you type in that password, make sure to leave the h uncaptitalized", or "captial D, the rest is uncapitalized".

Uncapitalized: not capitalized, such as, not written in capitals or with an initial capital. "An uncapitalized word". - From Mirriam Webster


Capitalize: to write or print in capital letters letters or with an initial capital letter. Related forms: capitalizable, adjective; capitalizer, noun; noncapitalized, adjective; uncapitalized, adjective - from Dictionary.com

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.