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Edustation's blog > Using Capital Letters

Using Capital Letters

Added by Tomasz H. 6 March 2014 in category: English, Learning tips

When do we Use Capital Letters? The basic guidelines for using capital letters in English appear simple enough: capitalize the pronoun I, capitalize the first word in a sentence and capitalize proper nouns and most adjectives formed from proper nouns. But things become tricky once we get down to the details.

However, there are some regional disagreements, so please, don't regard these "rules" as the final word;)

Use a capital letter in the following situations:

The first word in a sentence

My brother lives in Germany.

The pronoun 'I'

What can I say?

A proper noun

We sailed in the Atlantic Ocean

John drives a Nissan

Historical periods

the Middle Ages

the Renaissance

Days, months and holidays (without seasons)




Boxing Day

A person's title

Dr. Smith

Mr. Jones

Countries, nationalities, races, religions, ethnic groups and languages



African American




Capitalize the first and last words of titles of publications, other words within titles (including the short verb forms Is, Are, and Be)

Journal of Organic Chemistry

War and Peace

Gone With The Wind

Capitalize each letter in an acronym or initialism




Capitalize the formal names of government units, agencies, and divisions

White House

Department of Education

The names of awards, prizes, and scholarships

the Nobel Prizes

the Academy Award

Do you have any thoughts, questions or suggestions? Have you spotted a mistake or you don't agree with something? Leave a comment :-)

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Comments: (2)

Amelia Łukasiak - March 7, 2014, 12:01 p.m.

Is it correct to write Mr. with dot?

Tomasz H. - March 21, 2014, 12:28 p.m.

Americans tend to write "Mr.", "Mrs.", "Dr." etc.
British will usually, but not always, write "Mr", "Mrs", "Dr" etc.

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