In English usage, a proper adjective
is an adjective
In grammar, an adjective is a 'describing' word; the main syntactic role of which is to qualify a noun or noun phrase, giving more information about the object signified....
that takes an initial capital letter. A common adjective
is an adjective that is not a proper adjective. The term is used informally only; it is not used by grammarians or linguists.
Description of proper adjectives
In general, an adjective is a proper adjective if its meaning is "pertaining to "x", where "X" is some specific person, place, language, or organized group.
Most proper adjectives are derived from proper nouns; for example the proper adjective Japanese
is derived from the proper noun Japan
. Occasionally the reverse is true; for example the proper noun Hispanic
is derived from the proper adjective Hispanic
Sometimes, a word is written as a proper adjective to designate an ethnic group with a shared culture, heritage, or ancestry. This usage asserts the existence of a unified group with common goals. For example, in Canadian government documents, Native
A proper adjective can become a common adjective when it takes on new, more remote meanings, such as chauvinistic
. In addition, over time, a proper adjective can become a common adjective by convention, generally when the word has overshadowed its original reference, such as gargantuan
, or roman
in the term roman numerals
An adjective is not a proper adjective just because it is capitalized as part of a name or title. For example, great
is not a proper adjective in Great Britain
, and lost
is not a proper adjective in Raiders of the Lost Ark
Raiders of the Lost Ark is a 1981 American action-adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg, produced by George Lucas, and starring Harrison Ford. It is the first film in the Indiana Jones franchise...
An adverb is a part of speech that modifies verbs or any part of speech other than a noun . Adverbs can modify verbs, adjectives , clauses, sentences, and other adverbs....
formed from a proper adjective is written with a capital letter. For example:
- We have regularly received enquiries regarding the availability of Islamic finance products, in particular Islamically compatible finance to purchase both residential and commercial properties.
- There are people who express themselves 'Frenchly,' while others have forms of life that are expressed 'Koreanly' or 'Icelandicly.'
Other parts of speech
Verbs such as Canadianize
are written with a capital letter, although not generally described as "proper verbs".
Capitalization is writing a word with its first letter as a majuscule and the remaining letters in minuscules . This of course only applies to those writing systems which have a case distinction...
A demonym , also referred to as a gentilic, is a name for a resident of a locality. A demonym is usually – though not always – derived from the name of the locality; thus, the demonym for the people of England is English, and the demonym for the people of Italy is Italian, yet, in english, the one...
- Letter case
In orthography and typography, letter case is the distinction between the larger majuscule and smaller minuscule letters...
- List of adjectival forms of place names
- List of case-sensitive English words
- List of eponymous adjectives in English
- Noun#Proper nouns and common nouns