Rules of capitalization

I have noticed capitalization errors in many essays I corrected. The rules of capitalization aren’t all that complicated and with a little effort you can learn them and avoid these silly mistakes.

Capitalize I

This is the first time I have visited a foreign country.

Capitalize national adjectives (German, Indian, French, American, Arabian etc.) and nouns (India, America, Japan, Korea, Kuwait etc.)

  • Have you ever been to Australia?
  • The Japanese are known for their hospitality.
  • India is the land of gods.

Capitalize the names of languages

  • She has been learning English for six months.
  • Can you speak Hindi?

Capitalize the first word of a sentence.

Capitalize proper nouns (names of people, festivals, institutions, days, months etc.)

  • I met James yesterday.
  • Julie is my best friend.
  • He is at Oxford.
  • He works at Toyota.
  • North Indians celebrate Holi in March.
  • I have invited Tom and Peter to my party.

What not to capitalize

Do not capitalize common nouns.

  • There are fifty students in the class. (NOT There are fifty Students in the Class.)
  • The camel is a beast of burden. (NOT The Camel is a Beast of burden.)

Study the following examples.

  • He is at university. (Here the word ‘university’ is not capitalized because it is a common noun.)
  • He is at the University of Harvard. (University of Harvard is a proper noun and hence we capitalize it.)

Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I'm Manjusha. This is my blog where I give IELTS preparation tips.

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