I have read that short words – that is, those with less than five letters – should not be capitalized. However, online sentence-to-title case converters capitalize the pronoun/adjective "this".

What is the correct way to deal with words such as "this" or "these"?


  • 1
    Title Case Converter is an excellent tool for seeing how different style guides use title case. It also provides explanations. Aug 7, 2019 at 15:40

2 Answers 2


It depends which style guide you are following - but I couldn't find any that corresponded to "lowercase short words" (So "The Lord of the Rings" not "The lord of the Rings").

Grammarly suggests you capitalize the first word, all nouns, verbs, adjectives, and (implicitly) pronouns and adverbs and then says different style guides differ on how to handle articles, conjunctions, and prepositions. Some call for them to always be lowercase, and some for them to be upper cased if more than five letters.

Daily Writing Tips adds the last word and "subordinating conjunctions" ("as", "because", "although") to the "always capitalize" list (and discusses more the various style guides).

Everybody seems to agree though that "The This in a Title" is correctly title-cased.


I found this elsewhere (ha ha):

Looking up this in a dictionary (for example, Merriam-Webster) tells us it can have three grammatical functions: pronoun, adjective, and adverb. All title case styles consider pronouns, adjectives, and adverbs to be major words (along with verbs and nouns), and so it follows that this must always be capitalized in titles

  • You should include a link to the page you copied this from. Sep 11 at 13:20
  • 1
    'This' is never regarded as an adjective nowadays; in 'this car is mine' it is a proximal demonstrative determiner (determinative according to some treatments). And determiners include 'a' and 'the' (though I'd capitalise some of the others). Sep 11 at 13:50

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