Proper punctuation


If a word, eg iPhone, that is spelled with a small letter (i in this case) begins a sentence, does that first letter get capitalized?


I'm writing an article about drug products.  One of the drug brand names is "ella" (purposefully small letter "e").  ella begins several sentences.  Do I capitalize the "e"?

thank you.

asked Apr 10 '12 at 15:19 Bruce Glasscock New member

2 answers


This is a tough one.


In formal writing, I'd say the rule about starting sentences with numerals (25) applies. If a number starts a sentence, you spell it out (twenty-five). If you can't spell it out (too long), you should reword so another word starts the sentence.  So, I wouldn't begin with a lower case letter (unless I were e e cummings).


In less formal writing, starting with iPhone might be acceptable, athough an article "an" or "the" may be required and make the question moot.


In any case, I would not start a sentence with a lower case "etta" -- too visually confusing. Try rewording.  "The product, etta-blah blah, was introduced ..."


Hope this helps.

link comment edited Apr 10 '12 at 15:35 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow

Or you could use the generic name, Ulipristal.

link comment answered Apr 11 '12 at 04:11 Tony Proano Expert

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