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capitalization: deities

Capitalize names, synonyms and personifications of deities and other supernatural beings:

  • God
  • Allah
  • Jehovah
  • Gitchi Manitou
  • the Creator
  • the Almighty
  • Christ
  • the Messiah
  • Mother Nature
  • St. Gabriel the Archangel
  • the Devil

Do not capitalize such words used as common nouns:

  • The adoring public regarded the film star as a god.
  • The child was an angel.
  • Greg was a little devil when he was young.

Derivatives

Derivatives of these terms are normally lower-cased, as are similar terms used metaphorically:

  • christen
  • messianic
  • a saviour

Pronouns

Capitalize personal pronouns that refer to deities when they are used as proper nouns, but do not capitalize relative pronouns:

  • Trust in Him whose strength will uphold you.

Pagan deities

Do not capitalize the words god and goddess when they refer to pagan deities, but capitalize the names of the deities themselves (Baal, Woden, Zeus).

Terms for the afterlife

Do not capitalize words such as heaven, paradise, purgatory, nirvana and happy hunting ground when they are used in a non-religious sense:

  • After his wife died he went through purgatory.
  • War is hell.

but

  • God is in Heaven.
  • Many Buddhists seek to attain Nirvana.