Capitalization: Directions That Are Names
When giving directions (north, south, east, west, left, right), we don’t use capital letters.
Go south on the highway, and then take the third exit.
Turn right, then left, then right again.
When he graduates, he has plans to move somewhere east because he prefers the weather in that area.
The clouds are moving westward.
Knives go on the right-hand side of the plate.
Sometimes the directions can be used as a proper noun, so they require a capital at the beginning. For instance, “the East” generally refers to the Oriental countries such as China and Japan. “Eastern Europe” differentiates countries like the Ukraine and Russia from “Western Europe” which refers to Germany, France, etc. “The Left” and “the Right” can refer to political views.
During the Civil War, the North battled with the South.
Politically, Andrew has always leaned fairly far to the Left.
The Far East has always held some mystical appeal to those who have never been there.