Reference of a big city, though not incorporating full title

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Typically I know not to capitalize "the city" as it is not a proper name, however, when a protagonist uses it consistently throughout a book to reference a big city, like NYC, is it ever o.k. to capitalize any part of "city"?  I guess the question is does this word or any part of it deserve emphasis to emphasize it over other general cities?  Thanks for your help!

asked Jun 26 '13 at 18:22 Patricia New member

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Only if it is being used in place of the name. As an example, I used to live in the East Bay area of California, which is across from San Francisco. Locals refer to San Francisco as 'the City', not 'San Fran', 'San Francisco', and certainly never as 'Frisco'. "Do you want to go over to the City?" is a commonly used phrase. In this case, 'City' should be capitalized. I also spent some time in the NYC area, but I don't remember 'the City' being used in the same way.

link comment answered Jun 26 '13 at 19:59 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow

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