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Grammar lesson

November 27, 2015

8.67 Institutions and companies—capitalization
The full names of institutions, groups, and companies and the names of their departments, and often the shortened forms of such names (e.g., the Art Institute), are capitalized. A the preceding a name, even when part of the official title, is lowercased in running text. Such generic terms as company and university are usually lowercased when used alone (though they are routinely capitalized in promotional materials, business documents, and the like).

the University of Chicago; the university; the University of Chicago and Harvard University; Northwestern and Princeton Universities; the University of Wisconsin–Madison
the Department of History; the department; the Law School
the University of Chicago Press; the press
the Board of Trustees of the University of Chicago; the board of trustees; the board
the Art Institute of Chicago; the Art Institute
the Beach Boys; the Beatles; the Grateful Dead, the Dead; the Who (but Tha Eastsidaz)
Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band; the band
the Cleveland Orchestra; the orchestra
the General Foods Corporation; General Foods; the corporation
the Green Bay Packers; the Packers
the Hudson’s Bay Company; the company
the Illinois Central Railroad; the Illinois Central; the railroad
the Library of Congress; the library
the Manuscripts Division of the library
the Museum of Modern Art; MOMA; the museum
the New York Stock Exchange; the stock exchange
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; SOM; the architectural firm
the Smithsonian Institution; the Smithsonian
Miguel Juarez Middle School; the middle school

Source: The Chicago Manual of Style. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2014.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. November 27, 2015 22:46

    Well, la de dah! It used to be so … but such is the decline of the English Language. Alas, the usage of “The” before Reverend (e.g., The Reverend so and so) is also gone for the most part. Sigh….

  2. November 28, 2015 00:18

    You may be right, but I think the odd capitalization may stem from the canonical definition of the name of the church as The Episcopal Church. An analogy might be The Ohio State University. Odd but legal. I could be wrong.

  3. Jay Croft permalink
    November 30, 2015 12:29

    A common acronym these days is “TEC,” for The Episcopal
    Church. I’m not sure if this is a step up or a step down from “PECUSA.”

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