|Remember to capitalize the following:
Directions: The following sentences do not have correct capitalization. Correct the mistakes and rewrite the sentences.
- All proper nouns
- Names of people: the first letter of a person's first, last and middle name.
Examples: George W. Bush, Harriet Tubman
- Words used as names:
Examples: mother, father aunt, uncle when these words are used as names.
Will you ask Mother what we're having for lunch? - Mother is used as a name; remember if you could use her first name in its place then you capitalize. (Will you ask Sally what we're having for lunch?)
Will you ask my mother what we're having for lunch? - In this sentence, mother describes someone but is not used as a name. (If you replace mother with Sally it does not sound right -Will you ask my Sally what we're having for lunch?)
- Names, including initials, of individuals.
- Specific geographical locations: Hartford, Connecticut, Africa, Detroit Zoo, Lake Erie, the Northeast, the Southend.
- However, we do not capitalize compass directions or locations that aren't being used as names:
Examples: the north side of the city; we're leaving the Northwest and heading south this winter.
- Capitalize words that show a particular section of the country.
Examples: The Southern Coast is beautiful. I live in the South.
When these words indicate direction, don't capitalize them.
Walk four miles north to get to the next town.
- Names of celestial bodies:
Examples: Mars, Saturn, the Milky Way.
Do not, however, capitalize earth, moon, sun, except when those names appear in a context in which other (capitalized) celestial bodies are mentioned. "I like it here on earth," but "It is farther from Earth to Mars than it is from Mercury to the Sun.
- Names of newspapers and journals. Do not, however, capitalize the word the, even when it is part of the newspaper's title: the Hartford Courant, the Detroit Free Press.
- Days of the week, months of the year.
Examples: Tuesday, August
Do not, however, capitalize the names of seasons (spring, summer, fall, autumn, winter). "Next winter, we're traveling south; by spring, we'll be back up north."
- All names of holidays (excluding any prepositions).
Examples: Independence Day, Passover, Ramadan, Christmas.
- Historical events:
Examples: World War I, the Renaissance, the Crusades, the Civil War.
Examples: African American, Native American. (Most writers do not capitalize whites, blacks.)
Examples: Swedish,Jewish, French,American, Indian
Examples: English, Spanish, French
- Names of religions, religious terms, deities and sacred works:
Examples: God, the Almighty, Christ, Jesus, the Supreme Being, Allah, Buddha, Christianity, Christians, the Bible, Hinduism, Judaism, Jews, Islam, Muslims, Quran.
- Names of courses:
Examples: Economics, Biology 101, Computer 210,, Typing 11, History 101
However, we would write: "I'm taking courses in biology and earth science this summer."
- Brand names: Tide, Maytag, Chevrolet, Ford, Levi.
- Particular places, such as countries, cities, mountains, streets, oceans, lakes, and so on.
Examples: Chile, Peru, Mount Everest, Pacific Ocean, Rocky Mountains, the Nile River, Lake Erie
- Names of streets, buildings, parks, and companies.
Examples: Broadway, the Empire State Building, Central Park, Sony
- The names of prizes, treaties, and famous documents.
Examples: the Nobel Prize, the Declaration of Independence
- Academic degrees.
Example: John Smith, Ph.D.
- All words in the names of specific organizations and agencies excluding prepositions, conjunctions, and articles.
Examples: the Democratic Party, Republicans, Girl Scouts of America, a Democrat, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the U.S. Senate, the Middle Ages, World War I, the Battle of Britain.
- The names of ships, aircraft, satellites, and space vehicles: U.S.S. Arizona, Spirit of St. Louis, the spy satellite Ferret-D, Voyager II, the space shuttle Challenger.
- The names of specific courts.
Examples: the Supreme Court of the United States, the Massachusetts Appeals Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.
- Official names: names of businesses and the official names of their products.
Examples: Burger King, Popsicle, Crest toothpaste, Post Sugar Crisps
- Many abbreviations and acronyms.
Examples: Dec., Tues., Lt. Gen., UNESCO, B.C., A.D., A.M., P.M.