capital letters

capital letter

noun
a letter of the alphabet that usually differs from its corresponding lowercase letter in form and height, as A, B, Q, and R as distinguished from a, b, q, and r : used as the initial letter of a proper name, the first word of a sentence, etc.
Also called capital.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

capital letter
late 14c.; see capital. So called because it is at the "head" of a sentence or word.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

capital letters definition


One of the two kinds of letters. Capital letters, also called upper-case letters, are larger than, and often formed differently from, lower-case letters. Capital letters are used at the beginning of a sentence or a proper name and may be used to show respect. Some examples are: “The dog barked,” Daniel, the Lord, and Queen Elizabeth.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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