Initial Capitalization in Titles and Headines
According to the Chicago Manual of Style
site (Capitalization,Titles), the rules about titles or "headline-style
capitalization" are somewhat flexible. As they stated in an old FAQ:
In regular title capitalization,
also known as headline style, the first and last words and all nouns,
pronouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs, and subordinating conjunctions
(if, because, as, that, etc.) are capitalized. Articles (a, an, the),
coordinating conjunctions (and, but, or, for, nor [so, yet]), and
prepositions, regardless of length, are lowercased unless they are the
first or last word of the title or subtitle. . . .
They conclude that "considerations of
meaning and aesthetics can probably be
let in". In other words, the rules are sometimes broken, depending on
what seems appropriate at the moment. Still, rules should be understood
before you break them.
How does this relate to WordPerfect?
WordPerfect stores exceptions to the rules for initial
capitalization (i.e., when you use Edit, Convert Case, Initial
Capitals) in a normal WP file, WTNNXX.ICR (where NN is your WordPerfect
version number and XX is your language version). Words in this file
will be not be capitalized when the Initial Capitals feature is
The WTNNXX.ICR file can be edited as any
other WP file, to add or delete words (punctuation is ignored) (see footnote on this page).
However, it does not contain a comprehensive list of prepositions (see
the CMS quote above). In any case, many such words can also be nouns,
adverbs, or adjectives. So, bear in mind that if you use WP's Initial
Capitals feature with titles or headlines, you may want to inspect the
conversion to ensure it meets standard rules such as those embodied in
the CMS, or that it meets aesthetic needs [e.g., John Updike’s Rabbit
is Rich (lower case "i") makes more sense than Rabbit Is Rich
(upper case "I"), even though the rule says the word "is" should be
capitalized, and WP will dutifully capitalize it].
On top of this, for some reason there is
a large difference in the exception lists for the US/CE language
versions of the .ICR file (which contain 70 words) and the UK/OZ
versions (13 words). For example, the letter "a" is not in the UK/OZ
exception files, and the conjunction "nor" is missing in all four
English language lists, which means it will always be capitalized.
WordPerfect is a computer program, after
all. Don't expect it to take the place of your own judgment.