Is there a word for using a common noun as a proper noun

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kanmanaf
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Is there a word for changing a common/concrete noun into a proper noun? e.g the chair - the Chair. Would it class as personification?
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Lit teacher
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(Original post by kanmanaf)
Is there a word for changing a common/concrete noun into a proper noun? e.g the chair - the Chair. Would it class as personification?
It's not personification. if you are referring to a meeting, the Chair is a title (a shorter, gender neutral version of Chairman). It is capitalised as it is a reference to a particular person, in the same way as Prime Minister is a proper noun.
When you are not referring to a particular person but to the job title in general it stops being a proper noun.
So 'The Chair called the meeting to order' but 'All the different committee chairs were gathered together'.
Having said that, the rule about capitalisation is not very strictly observed, and in your example 'Chair' is often treated as a proper noun to avoid confusion with the item of furniture.
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kanmanaf
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(Original post by Lit teacher)
It's not personification. if you are referring to a meeting, the Chair is a title (a shorter, gender neutral version of Chairman). It is capitalised as it is a reference to a particular person, in the same way as Prime Minister is a proper noun.
When you are not referring to a particular person but to the job title in general it stops being a proper noun.
So 'The Chair called the meeting to order' but 'All the different committee chairs were gathered together'.
Having said that, the rule about capitalisation is not very strictly observed, and in your example 'Chair' is often treated as a proper noun to avoid confusion with the item of furniture.
Hi, thankyou for responding
I may have used a bad example there I was trying to reference a chair as in the object, the actual word in mind is “Palace”
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(Original post by kanmanaf)
Hi, thankyou for responding
I may have used a bad example there I was trying to reference a chair as in the object, the actual word in mind is “Palace”
OK, I think you may be referring to synecdoche. That's when a person or organisation are represented by a part of them. So when writing about the royal family, journalists sometimes put "The Palace refused to comment", or for in America "The White House remained defiant".
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kanmanaf
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(Original post by Lit teacher)
OK, I think you may be referring to synecdoche. That's when a person or organisation are represented by a part of them. So when writing about the royal family, journalists sometimes put "The Palace refused to comment", or for in America "The White House remained defiant".
I'm not sure it was used in that context it was more used as a description of a building. The sentence itself being "I found the Palace of Green Porcelain", which is later discovered to be a museum.
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(Original post by kanmanaf)
I'm not sure it was used in that context it was more used as a description of a building. The sentence itself being "I found the Palace of Green Porcelain", which is later discovered to be a museum.
Since it is not actually a palace, this is a metaphor, although historically the word 'palace' didn't just refer to somewhere lived in by royalty. 'Crystal Palace' in London was just a huge greenhouse, while Alexandra Palace is an entertainment venue.
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A mistake.
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