1. Published on Amazon? If you have a book, e-book, or audiobook available on Amazon.com, we'll promote it on WritingForums.org for free. Simply add your book to our Member Publications section. Add your book here or read the full announcement.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Dismiss Notice
  1. Rumwriter

    Rumwriter Active Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2011
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    20

    The War

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Rumwriter, May 9, 2013.

    If you are writing about World War II (or any war for that matter), and you refer to it as "the war" throughout your story, should you capitalize The/War?
     
  2. squishytheduck

    squishytheduck Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Messages:
    187
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    No. Unless the war is called The War, or is otherwise unnamed.
     
  3. LordKyleOfEarth

    LordKyleOfEarth Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,249
    Likes Received:
    80
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX. USA
    Yes you would, as it is the name of that conflict. This site discusses it further, and includes examples, but here is an excerpt:
     
  4. Thomas Kitchen

    Thomas Kitchen Proofreader in the Making Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2012
    Messages:
    1,258
    Likes Received:
    426
    Location:
    I'm Welsh - and proud!
    Whilst I agree with your excerpt, I disagree with it in this context: The Great War (WWI) can obviously be capitalised as it is often referred to as that, but the Second World War was not referred to as 'The War', and thus cannot be capitalised.
     
  5. LordKyleOfEarth

    LordKyleOfEarth Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,249
    Likes Received:
    80
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX. USA
    Correct, WWII was not 'The War', it was the war. But WWI, that was The Great War (because it was so much fun, no doubt).
     
  6. squishytheduck

    squishytheduck Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Messages:
    187
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Isn't that what I said? Sorry if I didn't phrase it well.
     
  7. LordKyleOfEarth

    LordKyleOfEarth Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,249
    Likes Received:
    80
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX. USA
    You may have. I misunderstood you with the "or is otherwise unnamed" bit.
     
  8. squishytheduck

    squishytheduck Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Messages:
    187
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Well, I was thinking that if in the book nobody ever says the actual name of the war, then The War is the name of the war by proxy.

    Like how He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named becomes Voldemort's name if nobody in the Wizarding World utters his actual name.
     
  9. LordKyleOfEarth

    LordKyleOfEarth Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,249
    Likes Received:
    80
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX. USA
    I suppose it depends on the context. If the story set in the year 2525 and mentions that a character just got home from fighting in the war, and that is the only reference made, it wouldn't be capitalized. But if his mother asks which war, and he tells her, "The War", it would be (because now its a proper noun that references a specific war, versus the earlier reference to an unspecific one).
     
  10. squishytheduck

    squishytheduck Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Messages:
    187
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    OK cool, thanks!
     
  11. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,316
    Likes Received:
    1,016
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon
    it depends on the context... if that's how the characters would refer to ww2, then it should be capitalized... otherwise, it would not...
     

Share This Page