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When to use capital letters

Average: 4.1 (19 votes)

I'll ask my dad to take us to the station. Would you mind taking us to the station, Dad?

Why is dad not capitalised in the first sentence but is in the second?

In the first sentence we use the personal pronoun my before dad. This shows we are talking about dads in a general way, and so we don't need to capitalise. In the second sentence Dad is the person's title. It's his name for now.

Capital Letters Explained

Capitalise the first letter in the first word of a sentence. – The taxi is coming.

Capitalise the first word in a quotation. – Tom said, "Stop eating so much cake".

Always capitalise the pronoun I but no other pronouns. – Do you know I live with her? She is my sister.

Capitalise proper nouns - a person, place or thing. – I went to London with James. We visited the British Museum.

Capitalise days of the week and months, but not seasons. – We have to work every Saturday in July. I hate summer!

Capitalise the planets, but not earth, sun and moon unless in a list of planets – I think Mercury is the smallest planet. Do you think people will ever go to the moon again?

Capitalise historical events – We watched a show about World War II.

Capitalise races, languages and nationalities – We work for a Japanese company. She speaks Portugese because she is from Brazil.

Titles of people, publications, songs and paintings – We saw Sunflowers by Dutch painter Vincent van Gough. She reads The Wall Street Journal every day.

Now decide which of the sentences has the correct capitalisation:

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  • 10) Which is correct?