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Letters 2 - Capital Letters
The Empire State Building.

Letters 2 - Capital Letters

English is a language of many conventions and grammatically a difficult language to master. You often come across words which start with a capital letter. This quiz will show you where capital letters should be used.

The first word in this introduction, 'English', is written with its first letter 'E' in capitals. The placement of the word at the beginning of a sentence means that it must be written with its first letter in capitals. This is a convention that is followed every time and you will see this in your text books or when you read a magazine article or when you read a novel. There is one more place where capital letters are used. Take a look at this sentence:

’He found the English language difficult to master.’ You will have noticed that 'English' is still written with its first letter in capitals. The reason is that all language names are considered to be proper nouns and proper nouns are always written with their first letter in capitals.

The name of a person, place or object is generally treated as a proper noun. Each friend of yours has a name and that name is a proper noun. For instance, Mustaq, Anamika, Mary, Milkha and so on. Similarly, all names of places such as New Delhi, London, Washington, Bangalore and Chennai are proper nouns. Also, titles and names of awards are always to begin with a capital letter and the examples here are Oscar Awards or Academy Awards or Bharat Ratna or Nobel Prize.

A proper noun can be defined in another way in the sense that it refers to a unique entity. Assuming Mustaq is your friend, you will realise that he is a unique person and you would not confuse him with any other person and this qualifies him to be a proper noun. Same way with Bangalore as a city. It is unique and cannot be confused with another city.

It may be worthwhile to remember that capital letters are also known as upper case letters. Take this quiz and learn more about capital letters and where and how they should be used.

1.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
Narendra Modi is the new leader of india.
narendra modi is the new leader of India.
Narendra Modi is The new leader of India.
Narendra Modi is the new leader of India.
In Answer 1, 'india' needs to be written with an I as country names are proper nouns and should always be written with a capital first letter. In Answer 2, 'narendra modi' needs both words to start with capitals as names of people are also proper nouns. In Answer 3, the word 'The' is neither a proper noun nor at the beginning of the sentence and so need not start with a capital
2.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
On the 15th of august every year India celebrates Independence Day.
On the 15th of August every year India celebrates independence Day.
On the 15th of August every year India celebrates Independence day.
On the 15th of August every year India celebrates Independence Day.
Specific months have to be written with a capital, as must days of the week. In answers 2 and 3, 'Independence Day' is a special day and it must always be written with capitals at the start of both words
3.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
He went to the cricket match and I went to the music concert.
He went to the cricket match and i went to the music concert.
he went to the cricket match and I went to the music concert.
He went to the cricket match and I went to the music Concert.
In Answer 2, 'i' refers to a person in the first person and it has always to be written in capitals. In Answer 3, the first word should start with a capital whilst in answer 4, the last word needs no capital
4.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
The taj mahal is one of the wonders of the world.
The Taj Mahal is one of the wonders of the world.
The Taj Mahal is one of the wonders of the World.
The Taj Mahal is one of the Wonders of the world.
In Answer 1, 'taj mahal' needs both words to begin with capitals as names of places, cities, buildings, towns and street names are proper nouns. In Answer 3, 'world' is a common noun and appears at the end of the sentence and so need not be written with a capital. In Answer 4, 'wonders' refers to all wonders and so is a common noun and as it appears in the middle of the sentence it needs no capital
5.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
The boy ran away from home.
the boy ran away from home.
The boy ran Away from home.
The boy ran away from Home.
Answer 3 spells 'away' with an A and answer 4 spells 'home' with an H, neither of which are required for words in the middle of a sentence unless they are proper nouns. Answer 2 does not use a capital T for the first word and, as we know, all sentences should begin with a capital letter
6.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
The physicist, Sir C V Raman is a Nobel Prize winner from India.
The physicist, sir C V Raman is a Nobel Prize winner from India.
The physicist, Sir C V Raman is a nobel Prize winner from India.
The physicist, Sir C V Raman is a Nobel prize winner from India.
In Answer 2, the title 'sir' is always to be written with a capital. In Answer 3, 'nobel' needs a capital. In Answer 4 'prize' goes with 'Nobel' and hence it also requires a capital. Remember that titles and names of awards are always to begin with a capital letter
7.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
The empire State Building is no longer the tallest structure in the world.
The Empire State Building is no longer the tallest structure in the world.
The Empire state Building is no longer the tallest structure in the world.
The Empire State building is no longer the tallest structure in the world.
The Empire State Building is the name of a famous building and names of buildings are proper nouns and so must begin with a capital letter
8.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
my mother said, "Do your homework".
My mother Said, "Do your homework".
My mother said, "Do your homework".
My mother said, "do your homework".
In Answer 4, the first word in the direct quote between inverted commas should start with a capital. In answer 1, the first word needs to begin with a capital and in answer 2, 'Said' needs no capitals as it is not a proper noun
9.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
The names, rama, Jesus and Allah are all names of gods.
The names, Rama, jesus and Allah are all names of gods.
The names, Rama, Jesus and Allah are all names of gods.
The names, rama, jesus and allah are all names of gods.
The names of gods are proper nouns and so must always to be written with a capital letter at their beginning
10.
Choose the sentence that has the correct capital letter usage.
Britney Spears' song toxic is topping the charts.
Britney Spears' song Toxic is Topping the charts.
Britney Spears' song Toxic is topping the charts.
Britney Spears' song Toxic is topping the Charts.
In Answer 1, 'toxic' is the name of a famous song by the singer and hence a proper noun requiring a capital. Note that titles of articles, magazines, stories, books and songs are always written with a capital. In Answer 2, 'Topping' appears in the middle of the sentence and hence needs no capital. In Answer 4, 'Charts' appears at the end of the sentence and hence needs no capital
Author:  V T Narendra

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