Capitalizing Nouns 101

Proper nouns are capitalized, common nouns aren’t. After all the years of English classes, and grammar tests it seems most of us still struggle with not only grammar but capitalization, especially in nouns. Well after reading Mignon Fogarty’s Grammar Girl’s website I found myself more comfortable with these common mistakes made among many of us.

Always remember the basics, a noun is simply a person, place, or thing, while proper nouns name specific people, places, or things. Pretty easy, right? Internet is a word that is capitalized, while website is not, website is not capitalized because there is many, it’s not just one specific, whereas Internet is one source, one form that many people use. Events and things would be capitalized, there’s a good example referring to “Ground Zero,” and how since September 11 “Ground Zero” is automatically referred back to September 11. Before hand the term ground zero was the term used referring to the site of an explosion.

It surprised me to read that earth isn’t always capitalized. There are certain circumstances where earth would be capitalized, but most of the time it’s not. For instance, if one is to say “Were taking off from Earth and heading to Mars,” than earth would be capitalized. It’s very tricky if one doesn’t keep a close eye on these simple yet profound rules of writing. So remember the two most important facts noted earlier in this blog, proper nouns are capitalized and common nouns aren’t. Just another random fact I found out on the Grammar Girl’s website, nicknames are also always capitalized, for all those who like to include nicknames in rosters or anything else they might be included in.

Now that I’m pretty well educated/informed on how to capitalize nouns, one thing I would like to learn more about would be the the proper way the use quotation marks, and parenthesis.