Capital and Lowercase Letters in Titles (Title Case)

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Titles should be written in title case. This means only using capital letters for the principal words. Articles, conjunctions, and prepositions do not get capital letters unless they start the title. For example:
  • The Last of the Mohicans

Using Capital Letters and Lowercase Letters in Titles (Title Case)

When writing a name or a title, it is a common convention to only use capital letters to start the principal words. This is called title case.

The principal words in a title are all the words which are not: In title case, articles, conjunctions, and prepositions are written with a lowercase letter unless they start the title.

Examples of Title Case

Here are some examples of titles in title case:
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
  • (In this example, the conjunction and and the article the are written with lowercase letters.)
  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • (Here, the preposition upon is written with a lowercase letter.)
  • Brighton on Sea
  • (Here, the preposition on is written with a lowercase letter.)
  • The Last of the Mohicans
  • (Here, the preposition of and the article the are written with lowercase letters. The article The starting the title is given a capital letter.)
Although title case looks neat, not everybody uses it. Many businesses use capital letters for all the words in their titles. You should copy the official versions if you know them.
THE MAIN WORDS ONLY

In title case, do not use capital letters for: The first word of the title is written with a capital letter regardless. For example:
  • The Last of the Mohicans
  • Have you seen "About a Boy"?
CLEAR GUIDELINES TO MAKE YOUR LIFE EASIER

Understanding title case removes the need to think about formatting titles. Some words are short and look awkward when you give them a capital letter. However, if you stick the rules, you will have clear guidance on whether to use a capital or not.
  • I read "How to be Black" in a day.
  • I read "How to Be Black" in a day.
  • (Despite being short, Be is a principal word.)


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