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Lowercase when referring to a partisan of a country. Capitalize only when referring to alignment with a politcal party to which this is the proper name

Nationalist China

see china ?

nationalities and races

Capitalize the proper names of nationalities, peoples, races, tribes, etc. : Arab, Arabic, African, American, Caucasian, Cherokee, Chinese, Eskimo, French Canadian, Japanese, Jew, Jewish, Nordic, Sioux, Swede, etc. See race for guidelines on when racial identification is pertinent to a story. Use derogatory terms only in direct quotes when essential to the story and flag the contents in an editor's note

National Labor Relations Board

NLRB is acceptable on second reference

National League of Cities

its members are the governments of cities with 30,000 or more residents, and some state and municipal leagues. It is separate from the U.S. Conference of Mayors, whose membership is limited to mayors of cities with 30,000 or more residents. The organizations often engage in joint projects, however. The office is in Washington

National Newspaper Association

A newspaper association representing community newspapers, their owners, publishers and editors. NNA is acceptable on second reference. Headquarters is at the Missouri School of Journalism, Columbia, Mo. See

National Organization for Women

Not of. NOW is acceptable on second reference. Headquarters in Washington

National Park Service

A bureau of the Interior Department. It manages the 391 units of the National Park System, which includes 58 national parks as well as monuments, battlefields, historic sites and seashores, and the White House. It was created in 1916, although the first national park, Yellowstone, was established much earlier in 1872. The National Park Service also helps administer dozens of affiliated sites, the National Register of Historic Places, National Heritage Areas, National Wild and Scenic Rivers, National Historic Landmarks, and National Trails

National Rifle Association

NRA is acceptable on second reference. Headquarters in Washington

National Weather Service

The weather service [lowevase] may be used in any reference

Nation of Islam

The nationalist religious movement traces its origins in 1930 to W.D. Fard, also knowsn as Wall Fard, who called for racial separation. Elijah Muhammad took over the leadership in 1934, holding the post until his death in 1975. A son, Warith [Wallace] Dean Muhammed, succeeded to the leadership and pointed the movement toward integration and traditional Islam. Louis Farrakhan led a militant faction into a separatist movement in 1976. The Nation of Islam does not release membership figures. Use the titles minister on first reference of clergymen: Minister Louis Farrakhan


one word for across a nation


see citizen, resident, subject, national, native

Native American

Acceptable for those in the U.S. Follow the person's preference. Where possible, be precise and use the name of the tribe: He is a Navajo commissioner. In stories about Amerian Indians, such words or terms as wampum, warpath, powwow, teepee, brave, squaw, etc., can be disparaging and offensive.


Acceptable in all references for the North Atlantic Trade Organization


A trademark for a brand of simulated leather

nautical mile

It equals 1 minute of arc of a great circle of the Earth or 6,076.11549 feet, or 1852 meters. To convert to approximate statute miles (5,280 feet) multiply he number of nautical miles by 1.15

naval, navel

Use naval in copy pertainin to a navy. A navel is a bellybutton. A navel orange is a seedless orange, so named because it has a small depression, like a navel

naval station

Capitalize only as part of a proper name: Norfolk Naval Station


Capitalize when referring to U.S. forces: the U.S. Navy, the Navy, Navy policy. Do not use the abbreviation USN. Lowercase when referring to the naval forces of other nations; the British navy. This approach has been adopted for consistency, because many foreign nations do not use navy as the proper name

Nazi, Nazism

Derived from the German for the National Socialist German Workers' Party, the fascist political party founded in 1919 and abolished in 1945. Under Adolf Hitler, it seized control of Germany in 1933


Acceptable in all reference to the National Broadcasting Co. A unit of General Electric Co. Divisions are NBC News, NBC Radio and NBC-TV

NCR Corp.

Formerly National Cash Register Co. Headquarters is in Dayton, Ohio

Near East

There is no longer a substantial distinction between this term and Middle East


when used in a medical sense, it means an individual can see well at close range but has difficulty seeing objects at a distance


Abbreviate Neb. in datelines and stories. Postal code: NE


proper spelling for the nighty

albino, albinos

proper spelling for the people without pigment

Alcoa, Inc.

Alcoa is acceptable in all references to the formerly named Aluminum Company of America. Alcoa is also a city in Tennessee


Use recovering, not reformed, in referring to those who have the disease of alcoholism


Do not abbreviate


see weather terms

Alitalia Airlines

Headquarters of this airline is in Rome


Pan-Arab satellite television news network based in Doha, Qatar


Use a hyphen: all-around (not all-round), all-out, all-clear, all-star


The Arabic word for God. The word God should be used, unless the Arabic name is used in a quote written or spoken in English

Allahu akbar

The Arabic phrase for "God is great"


the word must be used with great care: -Avoid any suggestion that the writer is making an allegation. -Specify the source of an allegation. In a criminal case, it should be an arrest record, an indictment or the statement of a public official connected with the case. -Use alleged bribe or similar phrase when necessary to make it clear that an unproved action is not being treated as fact. Be sure that the source of the charge is specified elsewhere in the story. -Avoid redundant uses of alleged. It is proper to say: The district attorney alleged that she took a bribe. Or: The district attorney accused her of allegedly taking a bribe. -Do not use alleged to describe an event that is known to have occured, when the dispute is over who participated in it. Do not say: he attended the alleged meeting when what you mean is: He allegedly attended the meeting. -Do not use alleged as a routine qualifier. Instead use a word such as apparent, ostensible or reputed

Allegheny Mountains

or simply: the Alleghenies


do not abbreviate. See addresses

allies, allied

Capitalize allies or allied only when referring to the combination of the United States and its Allies during World War I or World War II: The Allies defeated Germany. He was in the Allied invasion of France.

All Nippon Airways

Headquarters of this airline is in Tokyo

all right

(adv.) never alright. Hyphenate only if use colloquially as a compound modifier: He is an all-right guy

all time, all-time

An all-time high, but the greatest runner of all time. Avoid the redundant phrase all-time record

allude, refer

To allude to something is to speak of it without specifically mentioning it. To refer is to mention it directly

allusion, illusion

Allusion means an indirect reference: The allusion was to his opponent's war record. Illusion means an unreal or false impression: The scenic director created the illusion of choppy seas

alma mater

mother school

almost never

Do nut use the phrase. Instead use seldom or hardly ever


International terrorist organization headed by Osama bin Laden


a noun for something

altar, alter

an altar is a tablelike platform used in religious service. To alter is to change

alumnus, alumni, alumna, alumnae

Use alumnus [alumni p.] when referring to a man who has attended a school. Use alumna [alumnae p.] for similar references to a woman. Use alumni when referring to a group of men and women

Alzheimer's disease

A progressive, irreversible neurological disorder. Most victims are older than 65, but Alzheimer's can strike in the 40s or 50s. Symptoms include gradual memory loss, impairment of judgment, disorientation, personality change, difficulty in learning and loss of language skills. No cure is known.


Acceptable in all references to the amplitude modulation system of radio transmission

Amalgamated Transit Union

Use this full name on first reference. Headquarters in Washington


Use for both men and women. Capitalize as a formal title before a name

Amber Alert

A procedure for rapidly publicizing the disappearance of a child

amendments to the Constitution

Use First Amendment, 10th Amendment, etc.Colloquial references to the Fifth Amerndment's protection against self-incrimination are best avoided, but where appropriate: He took the Fifth seven tiems.


An acceptable description for a citizen of the United States

American Airlines

Headquarters is in Fort Worth, Texas. Parent Company is AMR Corp.

American Baptist Association

See Baptist churches

good will, goodwill

One word when used as the financial term referring to the amount by which the purchase price exceeds the fair value of an acquired company's net assets. Accounting rules require companies to evaluate goodwill yearly and take write-downs, known as impairment charges, to reflect any diminished value


A trademark for a Web search engine. Google (uppercase) is used informally as a verb for searching for information on the Internet. Headquarters of Google, Inc. is in Mountain View, Calif.


Grand Old Party. GOP is acceptable on second reference for Republican Party.

Gospel(s), gospel

Capitalize when referring to any or all of the first four books of the New Testament: the Gospel of St. John, the Gospels. Lowercase in other references: She is a famous gospel singer.

gourmand, gourmet

A gourmand is a person who likes good food and tends to eat to excess; a glutton. A gourmet is a person who likes fine food and is an excellent judge of food and drink


Always lowercase, never abbreviate: the federal government, the state government, the U.S. government

Government Accountability Office

The Government Accountability Office is a nonpartisan congressional agency that audits federal programs (Formerly the General Accounting Office). GAO is acceptable on second reference

governmental bodies

FULL NAME: Capitalize the full proper names of governmental agencies, departments, and offices: The U.S. Department of State, the Georgia Department of Human Resources, the Boston City Council, the Chicago Fire Department WITHOUT JURISDICTION: Retain capitalization in referring to a specific body if the dateline or context makes the name of the nation, state, county, city, etc. unnecessary: The Department of State (in a story from Washington), the Department of Human Resources or the state Department of Human Resources (in a story from Georgia), the City Council (in a story from Boston), the Fire Department or the city Fire Department (in a story from Chicago). Lowercase further condensations of the name: the department, the council, etc. FLIP-FLOPPED NAMES: Retain capital names for the name of a governmental body if its formal name is flopped to delete the word of: the State Department, the Human Resources Department. GENERIC EQUIVALENTS: If a generic term has become the equivalent of a proper name in popular use, treat it as a proper name: Walpole State Prison, for example, even though the proper name is the Massachusetts Correctional Institute-Walpole. PLURALS, NONSPECIFIC REFERENCES: All words that are capitalized when part of a proper name should be lowercased when they are used in the plural or do not refer to a specific existing body. Some examples: All states except Nebraska have a state senate. The town does not have a fire department. The bill requires city councils to provide matching funds. The president will address the lower houses of New York and New Jersey legislatures. FOREIGN BODIES: The same principles apply

government, junta, regime

A government is an established system of political administration: the U.S. goverment. A junta is a group or council that often rules after a coup: A military junta controls the nation. A junta becomes a government after it establishes a system of political administration. The word regime is a synonym for political system: a democratic regime, an authoritarian regime. Do not use regime to mean government or junta. For example, use the Franco government in referring to the government of Spain under Francisco Franco not Franco regime. But: The Franco government was an authoritarian regime. An administration consists of officials who make up the executive branch of a government: the Reagan administration


Capitalize and abbreviate as Gov. or Govs. when used as a formal title before one or more names

governor general, governors general

The formal title for the British sovereign's representatives in Canada and elsewhere. Do not abbreviate in any use


Acceptable in all references to Global Positioning System. If a descriptive word is used following, use it in lowercase: The GPS satellite

grade, grader

Hyphenate in combining forms: a fourth-grade pupil, a 12th-grade student, first-grader, 10th-grader


(v.) Graduate is corectly used in the active voice: She graduated from the university. It is correct but unnecessary, to use the passive voice: He was graduated from the university. Do not, however, drop from: John Adams graduated from Harvard. Not: John Adams graduated Harvard

graham, graham crackers

The crackers are made from a finely ground whole-wheat flour named for Sylvester Graham, a U.S. dietary reformer


The smallest unit in the system of weights that has been used in the United States.

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