If a proper noun is a name that identifies a particular person, place, or thing (Oxford Living Dictionary), then is the title of a chapter such as 'The Hen and the Hare', or 'Chapter Three: The Hen and the Hare,' or just 'Chapter Three' a proper noun?

I'm trying to figure out whether to capitalize it when referring to it within the text

Example: In Chapter Three, we saw how the hen outsmarted the hare.

  • 1
    "Chapter Three: The Hen and the Hare" is, "Chapter Three" is not. HTH.
    – Kris
    Dec 16, 2017 at 12:40
  • Thanks, Kris, but I have to wonder why since Chapter Three identifies a particular chapter in this book?
    – user191110
    Dec 16, 2017 at 12:42
  • Since that's the case, it's a common noun. Also, a part of the title does not "identify" it.
    – Kris
    Dec 16, 2017 at 12:44
  • Well, it isn't a part of a title here but the entire title (one way that it could be written, that is). Also, I wouldn't say it is a common noun just because it does not refer to all Chapter Threes in every book that's ever been written.
    – user191110
    Dec 16, 2017 at 12:49
  • In the given context, it is. "The brother" does not refer to all the brothers in the world but to the one in context. As you've noted, if just "Chapter Three" were the title, then that would surely be a proper noun in the given case.
    – Kris
    Dec 16, 2017 at 12:53


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