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Do You Capitalize the Names of Countries, Nationalities, and Languages?

You should capitalize the names of countries, nationalities, and languages because they are proper nouns—English nouns that are always capitalized.

Consider the following sentences and pay attention to the capitalized nouns:

English is made up of many languages, including Latin, German, and French.

My mother is British , and my father is Dutch .

The Mennonites began to worship in the Netherlands in the sixteenth century.

Jason has traveled extensively in Europe , Africa , and Southeast Asia .

If you’re ever wondering when to capitalize English, when you’re talking about the language or the nationality, the answer is always “yes.” Although people writing casually online often lowercase the word, it is a proper noun and therefore requires a capital letter.

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