English Grammar and Usage

In case-differentiated writing systems, Capitalization or just "capitalisation" is the practice of writing a word with its first letter as a capital letter (uppercase letter) and the remaining letters in lower case. The term can also refer to the type of casing used on text. Different languages have different capitalization conventions in their traditional writing systems. Several capitalisation styles exist; the proper capitalization depends on the region, the words and their use.

Proper nouns[]

Generally each word in a proper noun is capitalized. Examples:

  • Susan Anthony
  • Mohammed Sami
  • Los Angeles, California
  • English
  • Weatherly Elementary School

The exceptions are rare occasions where people or companies decide that the "proper" spelling of their names use lower or an unusual mixed case. Examples:

  • e. e. cummings
  • iPod, iBook, iPad, iPhone (Apple naming and branding convention for a series of their products.)

Sentence case[]

In English the first word of a sentence is capitalised. Other words in the sentence are not capitalize except if there is another reason to capitalise them, such as when a something is a proper noun.


  • The quick, brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.
  • The sixth sick sheik's sixth sheep's sick.
  • The gift was for Dani.

Titles and section headers[]

This one is tricky. There are regional variations for how to capitalize titles, like book titles, and headers, such as chapters, sections or other titles.

more to come

People's titles[]

Titles accompanying a proper noun are capitalized.

  • Ms Kapoor
  • President Obama