What is a Proper Noun?

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What is a Proper Noun?
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Contents

Pip is helping Koko prepare for her big debut at the art gallery. His job is to write a one sentence description of Koko's paintings, but there's one problem...Pip didn't capitalize the proper nouns and the gallery is opening soon! However, Pip doesn’t know what is proper noun. Let's help Pip fix his mistakes so they're ready in time by learning: What is a proper noun?

What Are Proper Nouns, and How Do I Use Them?

Below, we will learn what is the definition of proper noun and how to identify proper nouns, along with proper noun rules and proper noun examples.

What is the Definition of a Proper Noun?

What does proper noun mean? The proper noun meaning is similar to a common noun. A proper noun gives a special name to a common noun and always starts with a capital letter. Now that we know the proper noun definition, let’s take a look at the difference between common noun and proper noun.

Common Noun vs Proper Noun

The definition of a proper noun is a little different from the definition of a common noun. A common noun is a person, place, thing, or idea. In case you forgot what's a proper noun, a proper noun gives a special name to a common noun and always starts with a capital letter. As you can see, they are closely related but different from each other. You may be wondering, are proper nouns always capitalized? In the next section, we will discuss the proper noun capitalization rules.

Proper Noun Capitalization

Do proper nouns always start with a capital letter? The answer is yes, proper noun words will always be capitalized. In order to know if you are looking at a sentence with a proper noun, it is important to know all types of proper nouns. What are all the proper nouns? Below is a list of all the different types:

  • Names of people or characters
  • Titles of people
  • Names of places
  • Calendar days and months
  • Holidays
  • Brands and company names
  • Titles

In order to know the answer to questions like, “is a name a proper noun?”, and, “is a title a proper noun?” it is important to remember the different types of proper nouns. Next, we will see an example of a proper noun

What is an Example of a Proper Noun

The first painting Pip wrote a description for is pictured below. See if you can find an example of proper noun he forgot to capitalize. Here’s a hint: there’s more than one!

queen-bertha-treats-herself-on-national-ice-cream-day-proper-nouns.svg

Queen is a proper noun example because it is Bertha's title and it is at the beginning of the sentence, so it needs a capital ‘Q’.

queen-with-a-capital-q-bertha-treats-herself-on-national-ice-cream-day-proper-nouns.svg

Bertha is a proper noun example because it is the hippo's name, so it needs a capital ‘B’.

queen-bertha-with-a-capital-b-treats-herself-on-national-ice-cream-day-proper-nouns.svg

Last, "National Ice Cream Day" is a proper noun example because it is a holiday, so it should also be capitalized.

queen-bertha-treats-herself-on-national-capital-n-ice-capital-i-cream-capital-c-day-capital-d-proper-nouns.svg

Whats a Proper Noun Summary

Do you remember how to define proper noun? A proper noun gives a special name to a common noun and always starts with a capital letter. It’s important to always follow the proper noun capitalization rules when using proper noun examples in sentences.

Now that you’ve learned the proper noun definition and examples, it’s time to practice! On this website you will find proper noun activities and proper noun worksheets!

Transcript What is a Proper Noun?

Pip is helping Koko prepare for her big debut at the art gallery. His job is to write a one sentence description of Koko's paintings, but there's one problem... Pip didn't capitalize the proper nouns and the gallery is opening soon! Let's help Pip fix his mistakes so they're ready in time by learning... "What is a Proper Noun?" A noun, also known as a common noun, is a person, place, thing, or idea. A proper noun gives a special name to a common noun (...) and ALWAYS starts with a capital letter regardless of its location in a sentence. There are seven types of proper nouns: names of people or characters (...) such as Pip... titles of people, (...) such as Queen Bertha... names of places, (...) such as The Leaning Tower of Pisa... calendar days and months, (...) such as Tuesday October thirty-first... holidays, (...) such as the Fourth of July... brands and company names, (...) such as Tater Potato Chips... and titles (...) such as this painting called, "The Very Hungry Hippo". Now that we know different types of proper nouns, let's look at Pip's descriptions to see if we can find the proper nouns he forgot to capitalize! This description says, "queen bertha treats herself on national ice cream day." What did Pip forget to capitalize in this sentence? (...) Queen is a proper noun because it is Bertha's title AND it is at the beginning of the sentence, so it needs a capital . Bertha is a proper noun because it is the hippo's name, so it needs a capital . What else did Pip forget to capitalize? (...) "National Ice Cream Day" is a proper noun because it is a holiday, so it should also be capitalized. We capitalized all the proper nouns Pip forgot! Let's check another description. It says, "Early on monday, the wallaby times newspaper delivered the story 'kangaroo strike' to all of australia." What did Pip forget to capitalize in this sentence? (...) Monday' is a proper noun because it is a calendar day, so it needs a capital . What else did Pip forget to capitalize in this sentence? (...) The Wallaby Times' is a proper noun because it is the name of the newspaper, so it should also be capitalized. (...) 'Kangaroo Strike' is a proper noun because it is the title of the story or article... and 'Australia' is a proper noun because it is the name of a place, so it should be capitalized. We helped fixed all the descriptions just in time! Before we see how the art gallery turned out, let's summarize. Remember (...) a proper noun gives a special name to a common noun and ALWAYS starts with a capital letter. There are seven types of proper nouns: names of people or characters, (...) titles of people, (...) names of places, (...) calendar days and months, (...), holidays, (...), brands and company names, (...), and titles. "Koko, could you please come here for a second?" "Pip! What happened in here!?" "I made art."