from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A word that changes sound and meaning when the case is changed; a case-sensitive word.


capital + -onym (Wiktionary)


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  • Oh, yay! Thanks to Wiktionary, we finally have an official definition for capitonym:

    "Wiktionary (1 definition)–noun
    (linguistics) A word that changes sound and meaning when the case is changed; a case-sensitive word."

    The fox was right (of course)!*

    *But I'm still going to pronounce lower-cased "capitonym" as captionym. (It's too late--I've already recorded it.) See Chile.

    November 5, 2010

  • See usage note on Chile.

    March 7, 2010

  • November 29, 2009

  • Not to be a contrarian or anything, but I always believed that, for a word to be a capitonym, both the meaning *and the pronunciation* had to change depending on capitalization.

    Thus, reading and polish qualify, but john, for instance, does not.

    November 15, 2007

  • It means you're just not a typie.

    November 15, 2007

  • Does that mean I have to make up a definition for "pointsettia"? As soon as I entered it I saw my typo, but I just tagged it as a misspelling.

    November 15, 2007

  • Skipvia, apparently you haven't attended the University of Madeupical Etymology. There's still time to enroll!

    November 15, 2007

  • skipvia... shhhh... just make up a definition, pretend you meant it! See captionym for my attempt.

    November 15, 2007

  • It's capitonym. Captionym is not a word. I mistyped the word originally and deleted it immediately when I realized my mistake. It's still showing up, however.

    I hereby renounce all claim to being a Wordie.

    November 15, 2007

  • Not to be a killjoy, but... is this capitonym, or captionym? (The pronuncation is different depending on where the I is.)

    November 15, 2007

  • Words that have a different meaning depending on capitalization, such as polish and Polish.

    November 15, 2007