1. Punctuate THIS!
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    Punctuate THIS! Member

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    Title without a name

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Punctuate THIS!, Sep 29, 2009.

    If a character is none "only" by a title given to them (to be treated as a nickname), should that title/nickname be capitalized?

    "Your move, Gunsmith"

    And what about an indirect reference?

    "One of these days, I'm gonna catch the gunsmith."

    If so, is the word "the" inclusive to that title?
     
  2. witch wyzwurd
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    witch wyzwurd Contributing Member

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    Yes. Capitalized.
    If treated like a nickname, then no "the".
     
  3. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i have to disagree...

    whether used as a nickname or a name, a title would have to be capitalized, just like 'Doctor' or 'Major' would be... if used as a noun, that's when it wouldn't be... when 'the' is placed before it, it's a noun, not a name...

    anyway, 'gunsmith' isn't a 'title'... it's just an occupation... and the above rules apply only if the noun is being used as a name/nickname, which doesn't seem to be the case with your example... substitute any other noun/occupation for 'gunsmith' and you should see that it wouldn't be capitalized...

    "Your move, preacher."

    "Your move, mister."

    "Your move, bartender."
     
  4. jwatson
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    jwatson Active Member

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    I agree with Maia here. If you also mean a name the writer (you) are referring to a character as instead of their name, for example, I do it with my younger character. Instead of saying, "Daniel" sometimes I say "The youngster" not with the capital "y".
     
  5. jwatson
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    jwatson Active Member

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    And if it's a nickname, I don't think there is a "the" either.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If the name IS used as a nickname, though, it would be capitalized. For instance. a tinker is a general handyman. However, in Deep Space Nine's mirror universe, Sisko calls O'Brian Tinker. It is used as if it were a name, so it is capitalized.

    The same is true in many mystery novels. The detective notices he is being tailed by two unidentified people, one with a sport jacket, the other wearing a Dodger's baseball cap. Until he knows who they are, he refers to them to himself, possibly even to his partner, as Sport Jacket and Baseball Cap. For the time being, these are the characters; "names", so they are capitalized.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    yes!
     
  8. Punctuate THIS!
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    Punctuate THIS! Member

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    Well alright. That answered alot. Thank you.
     

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