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Capital and Capitol

Commonly Confused Words

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Capital and Capitol

Capital has multiple meanings: (1) a city that serves as the seat of government; (2) wealth in the form of money or property; (3) an asset or advantage; (4) a capital letter (the type of letter used at the beginning of a sentence).

Capitol refers to the building in which a legislative assembly meets. (Remember that the o in capitol is like the o in the dome of a capitol building.)


Examples:

  • The dome of the United States Capitol may well be the most famous man-made landmark in America.

  • Juneau is the capital of Alaska.

  • "It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data." (Arthur Conan Doyle)

  • "Capital punishment would be more effective as a preventive measure if it were administered prior to the crime." (Woody Allen)

Practice:

(a) The United States Capitol is the ______ building that serves as the location for the United States Congress.

(b) It is located in Washington, D.C., the ______ of the United States.

(c) If lying were a _____ crime, the hangman would work overtime.

(d) Proper funding of _____ programs will help the district avoid fiscal emergencies.

Answers to Practice Exercises

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