Writers Workshop: Writer Resources
Grammar Handbook: Common and Proper Nouns
Nouns can be divided into two categories: common nouns and proper nouns.
Common nouns name ordinary things that are not specific or important enough to be capitalized (except at the beginning of a sentence). Common nouns refer to any of a class of people, places, or things. Common nouns include most of the nouns used to name things.
A few examples:
Proper nouns name particular people, places, or things, that are special enough to be always capitalized.
A few examples: President Clinton, Georgia, Sony, Catholic, Pacific Ocean, Melissa, McDonalds, Walnut Street