Published on August 22, 2022 by Jack Caulfield. Revised on February 28, 2023.
Bạn đang xem: common noun là gì
A common noun is a noun that describes a type of person, thing, or place or that names a concept. Common nouns are not capitalized unless they appear at the start of a sentence, unlike proper nouns, which are always capitalized.
Common nouns include the names of different jobs, plants and animals, geographical features, ideas, objects, and many other things. They can be concrete nouns or abstract nouns.
Inequality is a major problem in many societies.
The farmer said his name was Tom.
Table of contents
Common nouns vs. proper nouns
Common nouns are defined by contrast with proper nouns. That means that all nouns are either common or proper (though the same noun can be both, in different contexts).
- Common nouns are general: they usually name classes of things, people, and places rather phàn nàn specific things, people, and places. They are only capitalized at the start of a sentence, and they can be modified by articles, determiners, and adjectives.
- Proper nouns are the names of specific individuals, things, places, companies, etc. They are always capitalized and typically not modified by articles, determiners, or adjectives.
Common nouns that can become proper nouns
Common nouns can often become proper (i.e., gain capitalization) when they are used as a name, or as part of a name.
For example, nouns designating family roles, such as “dad,” are common in most cases. But when they’re used directly as a name, without any articles or other determiners, they become proper and gain capitalization.
In a similar way, nouns that act as titles (e.g., “president,” “archbishop,” “professor”) are capitalized only when they’re used as part of the name of someone holding that title.
The current archbishop of Canterbury is Archbishop Justin Welby.
The cardinal directions (north, east, south, west) are common nouns in most cases. But they become proper when used with a cultural or political meaning or in the name of a specific location.
There is no longer a country called East Germany.
Countries categorized as part of the Global South are often still in the process of industrializing.
Conversely, proper nouns sometimes become so sánh general in their meaning that they turn into common nouns. For example, “thermos” was originally a brand name, and therefore capitalized, but is now used more generally to tướng refer to tướng any vacuum flask.
Academic concepts are usually common nouns
One common mistake is to tướng assume that concepts, theories, models, and frameworks are proper nouns, and therefore capitalize them. In fact, they are usually common nouns, although they may include proper nouns (or proper adjectives), which should be capitalized.
The Akaike information criterion evaluates how well a model fits the data it was generated from.
Xem thêm: làm nam châm điện
A revolution in scientific thought was initiated by Einstein’s theory of relativity.
In the late 18th century, German idealism responded to tướng ideas from the dominant schools of thought at the time, rationalism and empiricism.
Other interesting language articles
If you want to tướng know more about nouns, pronouns, verbs, and other parts of speech, make sure to tướng kiểm tra out some of our other language articles with explanations and examples.
Frequently asked questions about common nouns
- What’s the difference between common and proper nouns?
Common nouns are words for types of things, people, and places, such as “dog,” “professor,” and “city.” They are not capitalized and are typically used in combination with articles and other determiners.
Proper nouns are words for specific things, people, and places, such as “Max,” “Dr. Prakash,” and “London.” They are always capitalized and usually aren’t combined with articles and other determiners.
- Are seasons capitalized?
The names of seasons (e.g., “spring”) are treated as common nouns in English and therefore not capitalized. People often assume they are proper nouns, but this is an error.
The names of days and months, however, are capitalized since they’re treated as proper nouns in English (e.g., “Wednesday,” “January”).
- Are academic concepts capitalized?
No, as a general rule, academic concepts, disciplines, theories, models, etc. are treated as common nouns, not proper nouns, and therefore not capitalized. For example, “five-factor model of personality” or “analytic philosophy.”
However, proper nouns that appear within the name of an academic concept (such as the name of the inventor) are capitalized as usual. For example, “Darwin’s theory of evolution” or “Student’s t table.”
Sources in this article
We strongly encourage students to tướng use sources in their work. You can cite our article (APA Style) or take a deep dive into the articles below.
This Scribbr article
Caulfield, J. (2023, February 28). What Is a Common Noun? | Definition & Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved September 7, 2023, from https://aqv.edu.vn/nouns-and-pronouns/common-nouns/
Aarts, B. (2011). Oxford modern English grammar. Oxford University Press.
Butterfield, J. (Ed.). (2015). Fowler’s dictionary of modern English usage (4th ed.). Oxford University Press.
Show all sources (3)
Is this article helpful?
You have already voted. Thanks :-) Your vote is saved :-) Processing your vote...
Xem thêm: toan chuc cao thu