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  1. #1
    Alice B Guest

    Default Surnames including "de"

    Hi! I have this question.

    We are writing an interview with a person with a Spanish surname. His name is "Juan de la Guarda."

    So, the question is, when we use the surname alone, without the name, should we use it with a capital letter? Instead of "de la Guarda said", should we write "De la Guarda said"?

    I don't know hoe English works in theses cases with foreign surnames that include "de", "dos", "d' ", etc.

    Thank you for your help!

  2. #2
    anupumh's Avatar
    anupumh is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Surnames including "de"

    Why don't you use the complete name "Juan de la Guarda"...

  3. #3
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: Surnames including "de"

    Quote Originally Posted by Alice B View Post
    Hi! I have this question.

    We are writing an interview with a person with a Spanish surname. His name is "Juan de la Guarda."

    So, the question is, when we use the surname alone, without the name, should we use it with a capital letter? Instead of "de la Guarda said", should we write "De la Guarda said"?

    I don't know hoe English works in theses cases with foreign surnames that include "de", "dos", "d' ", etc.

    Thank you for your help!
    There is no global rule in English about this. Generally in the middle of a sentence you would not capitalize. I prefer not capitalizing a name if it is not normally capitalized - not even for the beginning of a sentence.

    de la Guarda comments in his essay, " ... ". He was answered by von Hempelstein. van der Witt offered a third opinion.

    This seems more respectful of a person's name.
    However, many style sheets would require a capital for the first word in a sentence. I have some books that capitalize 'van' in the References/Bibliography section, and others that don't.

    Here is an example that makes it up as it goes along:

    =============================================
    What Van Gogh’s letters reveal of his life

    Review by Jackie Wullschlager
    Published: September 19 2009 00:18 | Last updated: September 19 2009 00:18

    Vincent van Gogh’s ‘The Sower’ (1888)The Letters: The Complete Illustrated Edition
    By Vincent van Gogh
    Edited by Leo Jansen, Hans Luijten and Nienke Bakker
    Thames & Hudson 325, six volumes, 2,240 pages
    Even if van Gogh had destroyed every canvas he painted, his letters would still fix his place in history. The most complete, vivid, authentic and ...




    References:
    Van Gogh’s Letters: The Artist Speaks’, October 9 2009-January 3 2010, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam; www.vangoghmuseum.nl
    ‘The Real van Gogh: The Artist and his Letters’, Royal Academy of Arts, London, January 23-April 18 2010; www.royalacademy.org.uk

    FT.com / Books / Non-Fiction - What Van Gogh?s letters reveal of his life

  4. #4
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: Surnames including "de"

    PS: Most common names like this start with: da, de, d', della, le, la, l', van, von.

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