living in settlements called <the> New Settlement

apoziopeza

Senior Member
slovak
Hi,

Could you please advise, would you any article befor the name of the settlement as listed below?

Thanks,

Natalia

Their policies consist in steady measures seeking to increase the living standards, particularly of its most marginalized community living in what has become known as the Old Settlement. [old settlement mentioned for the first time] ...

These Roma have been living in settlements called the New Settlement and the Old Settlement. Romani families built their family houses forming the New Settlement in the late 1970’s. [there is only one old and one new settlement]
 
  • MarFish

    Senior Member
    English - American
    Looks good except "the" should be capitalized for all three if it is part of the name ("The New Settlement", "The Old Settlement").
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    apoziopeza. I take it that as you have used initial capitals these are place names, not just descriptions. The use of articles very much depends on context. If you are translating form another language to English and the other language uses articles, then use the articles the same way (eg Den Haag, The Hague). If you are translating from another language that does not use articles you have to make a decision, and it is difficult to offer guidance.

    In English place names there may or may not be an article - it is part of the name. You have places called Old Settlement and New Settlement. Similar English place names are Old Dock, New Dock, Old Town, New Town. They do not have the definite article.
     

    apoziopeza

    Senior Member
    slovak
    Hi Anygc, I have sometimes a problem to distinguish when it is a name (e.g., New York) and when just mere description. It is a translation from Slovak and we do not use articles. That is why I would opt to omit "the" and leave it only if there are more old settlements and specify one particular old settlement. I guess people call it these names, so it should be without articles.

    Thanks,

    A.
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    MarFish said:
    Looks good except "the" should be capitalized for all three if it is part of the name ("The New Settlement", "The Old Settlement").

    I disagree with this. There are almost no times when "the" should be capped as part of a town name, though it is usually capped when it's part of a publication title, e.g. The New York Times or The Chronicles of Narnia.
     

    MarFish

    Senior Member
    English - American
    I disagree with this. There are almost no times when "the" should be capped as part of a town name, though it is usually capped when it's part of a publication title, e.g. The New York Times or The Chronicles of Narnia.
    Then "the" shouldn't even be part of the sentence in the first place: "These Roma have been living in settlements called the New Settlement and the Old Settlement." Like I said in my original post, it depends on whether "the" is part of the name (hence the "if"...)
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    Sorry, MarFish, but even with your additional qualification, I simply disagree. The should be capped only when it's part of a composition title. It doesn't make a difference if it's "part of" a place name or not; it's still not capped. You don't cap the the in "the Rockies" or "the Amazon River," so you don't cap it if it's used with "the New Settlement" either. Or perhaps I should say that I don't. :) I don't know many other people who do, but then again, maybe you do.
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Or perhaps I should say that I don't. :) I don't know many other people who do, but then again, maybe you do.
    Well, about 60 million Brits for starters - in place names such as:
    The Alders (Staffordshire), The Bage (Herefordshire), The Bank (Cheshire), The Brushes (Derbyshire), The Green (about 16 of those), The Neuk (Kincardineshire), The Fence (Gloucestershire).
    I could go on and on ...... and on.

    [But just for you, Kate, the Cot (Monmouthshire) :D]
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    JustKate, would you be so kind and provide an example of a composition title? thanks, A.
    Sure: "I saw it in yesterday's edition of The Washington Post."
    "Shakespeare's 'The Taming of the Shrew' was first performed in between 1593 and 1594."
    "When she was a toddler, my niece loved the book The Little Engine that Could."


    Well, about 60 million Brits for starters - in place names such as:
    The Alders (Staffordshire), The Bage (Herefordshire), The Bank (Cheshire), The Brushes (Derbyshire), The Green (about 16 of those), The Neuk (Kincardineshire), The Fence (Gloucestershire).
    I could go on and on ...... and on.

    [But just for you, Kate, the Cot (Monmouthshire) :D]
    Well, if it's OK with you guys, I guess it's OK with me, but I'd lowercase all of those thes, if it were up to me, and Garner's Modern American Usage and The Associated Press Stylebook agrees with me. (If I have a chance, I'll check Reuters, since it's more in line with BrE style.) I do think it's silly, but to each form of English its own silliness.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Well, about 60 million Brits for starters - in place names such as:
    The Alders (Staffordshire), The Bage (Herefordshire), The Bank (Cheshire), The Brushes (Derbyshire), The Green (about 16 of those), The Neuk (Kincardineshire), The Fence (Gloucestershire).
    I could go on and on ...... and on.

    [But just for you, Kate, the Cot (Monmouthshire) :D]
    We also have town names in the U.S. with "The" capitalized. "The Dalles" in Oregon comes to mind. I think it's not as common as it is in England but we do have them.
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    but I'd lowercase all of those thes, if it were up to me, and Garner's Modern American Usage and The Associated Press Stylebook agrees with me. (If I have a chance, I'll check Reuters, since it's more in line with BrE style.)
    Kate. It's not up to you. What on Earth do style books have to do with it? These places have The as part of their names. I don't think the Ordnance Survey and the various Gazetteers of the United Kingdom care a toss what Garner's, Associated Press or Reuters think.
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    If I may quote Garner (part of a long section on capitalization), "In general, always capitalize an article when it's part of the title of a book, play or other literary or artistic work, but leave it lowercase if it is not part of the title...Finally, the is lowercase when referring to many countries and geographic entitities," but it goes on to say that sometimes there are exceptions, or possible exceptions, and he lists The Dalles among these possible exceptions. He's not very didactic about it, though, apparently because there is no way to tell what should be an exception to the general rule "Don't cap it" and what shouldn't be.

    In any case, even if The Dalles and the 16-odd The Greens have earned their capped Thes, that doesn't mean the New Settlement has. I really do think the best rule for unusual capitalization is, "When in doubt, don't."
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    Kate. It's not up to you. What on Earth do style books have to do with it? These places have The as part of their names. I don't think the Ordnance Survey and the various Gazetteers of the United Kingdom care a toss what Garner's, Associated Press or Reuters think.

    The problem is that there is no standard, no rule. When is the part of the name and when isn't it? Can you explain it? The Ordnance Survey doesn't care what Associated Press or Reuters thinks, but those of us who have to write about these things do, and what both we writers and our style guides care about is being fair and consistent.

    Should I really have to google every place name, checking multiple listings, to figure out whether the should be capped or not? No, I shouldn't. And what if I do check and the various listings disagree (which they definitely do for the/The Rockies and the/The Hague)? Do I just flip a coin or what? I think by far the most sensible and fair thing to do is to treat all definite articles the same. Give me a rule and I'm happy to follow it. It will still be obvious that it's a proper name so long as I make sure I cap it, whether it's the Bage or The Bage, won't it?
     
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    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Now that the discussion has wandered from the specifics of the question set out in post #1, it has wandered into territory that has, in part, been addressed at considerable length already in, for example:

    The Hague

    Country names with "The"

    articles before countries

    Antarctica vs. the Antarctic; Argentina vs. the Argentine

    These do not always cover the capitalisation issue.

    If I want to know whether to capitalise "the" in a location name, I check a reputable source, preferably a source that represents the location in a formal way.
    For example many government sites use The Hague, including http://thehague.usembassy.gov/ and http://en.denhaag.nl/en.htm
     
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    JamesM

    Senior Member
    ? I think by far the most sensible and fair thing to do is to treat all definite articles the same. Give me a rule and I'm happy to follow it. It will still be obvious that it's a proper name so long as I make sure I cap it, whether it's Bage or The Bage, won't it?
    I can tell you that the people who live in The Dalles, Oregon would not be happy if you called it Dalles. They would not recognize it as the name of their town. The name is "The Dalles".

    As for consistency in naming conventions... what a marvelously optimistic thought. :) As long as humans are involved in naming things you are guaranteed to have some inconsistency.
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    ^ I would never suggest calling it Dalles - what I suggested was calling it the Dalles, with a lowercase "t" - just like the Rockies, the Mississippi River, the Grand Canyon, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. (Ohio State, by the way, tries to make everybody call it The Ohio State University, which is far, far sillier than The Dalles, if you ask me.) Of course "the" would be capped if it was the first word in a sentence or when it's on an envelope, when it would be the first word on that particular line of the address, but other than that, I just don't get it. Maybe if I lived somewhere that had a weird capitalization thingy I would, but as it is, it's just seems senseless to me. It's more senseless than even other place name weirdnesses because it can be controlled. All it would take is a teensy, weensy bit of consistency.
     

    PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    Somewhere in the world are a Mr and Mrs The. The The family are very pleasant.

    The problem with place names with The in them arises when I have to go to the The Hague office of my firm; going to the Paris office presents no difficulties.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Consistency is not difficult.
    If you are writing for an organisation that has a style guide, follow it whether you like it or not.
    If you are writing for yourself, and you have a personal style guide, follow it.
    If you are writing for yourself and you care to get it right, check with an authoritative source such as the official website for the location. I have to confess that this will not always give you an unequivocal answer :)
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Kate said:
    ^ I would never suggest calling it Dalles - what I suggested was calling it the Dalles, with a lowercase "t" - just like the Rockies, the Mississippi River, the Grand Canyon, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
    But you would be misleading the reader. If I have something named "the Mississippi River" I can logically extend that to assume that I could have something like "Mississippi River State Park". I can't do the same with "The Dalles". If you write it "the Dalles" people could assume they might have "Dalles State Park". That would be an incorrect assumption. "The" is actually part of the name. That is why it is capitalized.

    To me, this applies to the original question. If you can refer to the place as Old Settlement (as in "Altestadt" in German or "Old Town" in English) then I can see calling "Old Settlement". If it is always preceded by "The" in the original I would use "The" in English.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Somewhere in the world are a Mr and Mrs The. The The family are very pleasant.

    The problem with place names with The in them arises when I have to go to the The Hague office of my firm; going to the Paris office presents no difficulties.
    If you follow my suggestion for those who care (above) you will see that there is no article in the adjectival form - Reports of fish mortality in Hague waters
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    Consistency is not difficult.
    If you are writing for an organisation that has a style guide, follow it whether you like it or not.
    If you are writing for yourself, and you have a personal style guide, follow it.
    If you are writing for yourself and you care to get it right, check with an authoritative source such as the official website for the location. I have to confess that this will not always give you an unequivocal answer :)
    Yes, I have noticed that!

    But you would be misleading the reader. If I have something named "the Mississippi River" I can logically extend that to assume that I could have something like "Mississippi River State Park". I can't do the same with "The Dalles". If you write it "the Dalles" people could assume they might have "Dalles State Park". That would be an incorrect assumption. "The" is actually part of the name. That is why it is capitalized.

    To me, this applies to the original question. If you can refer to the place as Old Settlement (as in "Altestadt" in German or "Old Town" in English) then I can see calling "Old Settlement". If it is always preceded by "The" in the original I would use "The" in English.
    I'm sorry to be so dense (really - I'd like to understand even if I can't agree, and right now, I'm neither understanding nor agreeing!), but I still don't get what's so unique about, for example, the/The Dalles that it really needs that capped "the." I get that it wants it, I get that the townspeople are attached to their capped The, I get that they use it every single chance they can, but I don't see why it's necessary.

    And what I really don't get is what additional information a capped The adds to a name that a lowercase the does not. The Mississippi River is just as important and majestic if its the is lowercased, and so it is with the/The Dalles. But hey, I live in a town without an article in the name, and in fact, I've never lived in a town with an article in the name, and I begin to suspect that therein lies the difference.

    In any case, I don't want to encourage the New Settlement people to get all bothered by their definite article. So if they aren't already attached to it, I recommend not letting any of them see this discussion, OK?
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    No, not OK. :) I think this is a valid discussion.

    "The Mississippi River is vast. A Mississippi River boatman can spend a lifetime learning its thousands of miles of waterways."

    But I have to write:

    "The Dalles is beautiful. A The Dalles resident can happily spend a lifetime here." (Arguably, I would probably write it "A resident of The Dalles", but I think the first collocation might get the point across more clearly.)

    "The" is part of the name. It is not an article preceding the name.

    Some examples:

    http://gorgenews.com/news/?p=15222

    Ahier said the water rate hikes are creating a financial hardship for many The Dalles families and the next one shouldn’t happen if the city could find a way to avoid taking that step.

    http://www.dexknows.com/business_profiles/gorge_glass_and_contracting_inc-b64490

    "Gorge Glass & Contracting, Inc is a The Dalles, OR glass and window shop. We give personal service and expert advice with the goal of making your home even more beautiful. It's our job to pay attention to every detail."

    http://www.oregon.gov/OSP/NEWSRL/news/08_07_2008_snell.shtml

    "Shortly thereafter, a The Dalles police officer spotted the vehicle parked at the East 10th Street location with the female passenger inside and body armor in the unoccupied driver's seat."

    http://www.gototrafficschool.com/register/The-Dalles-Oregon-City-Online-Traffic-School.aspx

    "I was traveling recently and received a The Dalles Oregon traffic citation, so do I need to enroll in the The Dalles Oregon online defensive driving course?"


    You can't write these as "many the Dalles", "by a the Dalles" or "is a the Dalles" or, even stranger, "in the the Dalles". It wouldn't make sense grammatically. The capital letter indicates the status of "The" as part of the name.
     
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    scrotgrot

    Senior Member
    English - English
    I believe the traditionalist rule is to leave the uncapitalised, and talk of newspapers like the Times, the Daily Mail. Others look to the masthead of those same newspapers, so The Times, but still the Daily Mail. Still others would say the is part of the name no matter what.

    It does depend on context though. If PaulQ talked about going to just the Hague office, everyone would know what he meant because the Hague is a well known settlement and there's no common noun it could be confused with. In this case it's not worth him saying the The Hague because the meaning is already clear, and the next concern is making the sentence flow nicely stylistically. This gets even more complicated when you start mixing languages and talking about the Den Haag office or the Le Mans 24 hours.

    If Andygc talked about visiting the Fence in Gloucestershire, though, people would have trouble, firstly because fences are common nouns, but also because it's not a well known enough place. Even talking about the Neuk or the Alders people might easily assume he was talking about a pub or some other local feature.

    As a very general rule, I would say it is more stylistically correct to treat any leading the as if it were grammatical, and omitting and changing it as necessary. This means you say I read a "Times" article or I visited Camden's famous World's End pub rather than the awkward I read a "The Times" article or I visited Camden's famous The World's End pub. However if this gets in the way of the meaning, you should, as ever, sacrifice style for clarity and include the even if it wouldn't fit there in a run-on grammatical sentence.
     

    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    Scrotgrot, that sounds awfully...reasonable and sensible. Gosh.

    No, not OK. :) I think this is a valid discussion.

    "The Mississippi River is vast. A Mississippi River boatman can spend a lifetime learning its thousands of miles of waterways."

    But I have to write:

    "The Dalles is beautiful. A The Dalles resident can happily spend a lifetime here." (Arguably, I would probably write it "A resident of The Dalles", but I think the first collocation might get the point across more clearly.)

    "The" is part of the name. It is not an article preceding the name.

    Some examples:

    http://gorgenews.com/news/?p=15222

    Ahier said the water rate hikes are creating a financial hardship for many The Dalles families and the next one shouldn’t happen if the city could find a way to avoid taking that step.

    http://www.dexknows.com/business_profiles/gorge_glass_and_contracting_inc-b64490

    "Gorge Glass & Contracting, Inc is a The Dalles, OR glass and window shop. We give personal service and expert advice with the goal of making your home even more beautiful. It's our job to pay attention to every detail."

    http://www.oregon.gov/OSP/NEWSRL/news/08_07_2008_snell.shtml

    "Shortly thereafter, a The Dalles police officer spotted the vehicle parked at the East 10th Street location with the female passenger inside and body armor in the unoccupied driver's seat."

    http://www.gototrafficschool.com/register/The-Dalles-Oregon-City-Online-Traffic-School.aspx

    "I was traveling recently and received a The Dalles Oregon traffic citation, so do I need to enroll in the The Dalles Oregon online defensive driving course?"


    You can't write these as "many the Dalles", "by a the Dalles" or "is a the Dalles" or, even stranger, "in the the Dalles". It wouldn't make sense grammatically. The capital letter indicates the status of "The" as part of the name.

    James, your post has convinced me of three things:

    1. The people of the/The Dalles are really attached to their "the," and also to it's being capitalized. Really attached. Weirdly attached, if I might say so. It's a harmless form of madness, and perhaps even a bit charming, in an offbeat sort of way, and in any case it's much less crazy than, say, the Flat Earth Society or those people who spend all their spare time trying to prove that Shakespeare didn't write plays.

    2. But although it's a harmless form of peculiarity, I have to say that using The as you demonstrate it is just nuts, OK? (It would be just as nuts if the were lowercase, by the way.) "I live in The Dalles" is slightly odd, but it's at least within the realm of what passes for normality in English. But come on: "a The Dalles traffic citation" is something that would make sense only to someone from this town, and what's more, it would make sense only to someone from this town who is passionately devoted to that The. What is the point of writing something that makes sense only to a very small group of people? The reaction of virtually everyone else would be either "That's a weird typo" or else, "OK, so they like to be called The Dalles. I get that. Are you telling me that they can't even let loose of that The when using Dalles as a modifier?"

    I really, really, really find it difficult to believe that every town or city in the English-speaking world that likes its the/The likes it even half as much as The Dalles does. I imagine some other town somewhere is devoted/passionate/eccentric enough to use that "a The Townname traffic citation" construction, but may I say that I kind of doubt there are very many?

    3. I still haven't made up my mind about how I would write the/The Dalles should I ever need to - I'm rather hoping I never need to. But I do know that if I wanted to please someone from there - not saying I would, but if I did - I'd need to write it The Dalles, and I also know that I'm determined to not allow this weirdness to spread. I might concede The Dalles. Maybe. If I'm in a good mood. Though I cannot imagine being in a good enough mood to cheerfully agree to "a The Dalles glass and window shop." But if the New Settlement folks aren't yet passionate about their the, either capped or not, I vote that we nip this oddness in the bud and not allow it to spread any further.
     
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    jarabina

    Senior Member
    English - Scotland
    Just to return to the OP. The translation is presumably informative only since we generally don't translate place names unless they already have a different name eg Cologne or The Hague, which is certainly not the case here. There seems to be no real reason to use 'the' here, so I would go for:

    Their policies consist in steady measures seeking to increase the living standards, particularly of its most marginalized community living in what has become known as XXX XXX (Old Settlement).
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Scrotgrot, that sounds awfully...reasonable and sensible. Gosh.




    James, your post has convinced me of three things:

    1. The people of the/The Dalles are really attached to their "the," and also to it's being capitalized. Really attached. Weirdly attached, if I might say so. It's a harmless form of madness, and perhaps even a bit charming, in an offbeat sort of way, and in any case it's much less crazy than, say, the Flat Earth Society or those people who spend all their spare time trying to prove that Shakespeare didn't write plays.
    I don't know why you see it as so weird. Are the people of New York "oddly attached" to the "New" in their name? Should we write it "new York"? There is no reason a definite article (such as "the") cannot be part of a name while an adjective (such as "new") can.

    2. But although it's a harmless form of peculiarity, I have to say that using The as you demonstrate it is just nuts, OK? (It would be just as nuts if the were lowercase, by the way.) "I live in The Dalles" is slightly odd, but it's at least within the realm of what passes for normality in English. But come on: "a The Dalles traffic citation" is something that would make sense only to someone from this town, and what's more, it would make sense only to someone from this town who is passionately devoted to that The. What is the point of writing something that makes sense only to a very small group of people? The reaction of virtually everyone else would be either "That's a weird typo" or else, "OK, so they like to be called The Dalles. I get that. Are you telling me that they can't even let loose of that The when using Dalles as a modifier?"
    I disagree entirely. Following the new/New York analogy, what "by a New York state trooper" tells me is that the state trooper works for New York. What "a The Dalles police officer" tells me is that the officer works for a place called "The Dalles". That is universal, not specific to a small group of people. I now know that I must include "The" in the name of the city whenever I refer to it. This is following a convention, not breaking one.

    I really, really, really find it difficult to believe that every town or city in the English-speaking world that likes its the/The likes it even half as much as The Dalles does. I imagine some other town somewhere is devoted/passionate/eccentric enough to use that "a The Townname traffic citation" construction, but may I say that I kind of doubt there are very many?
    Well, seeing that you didn't even know there were towns with "The" in the name until recently, this incredulity may take time to wear off. :) And you're still missing the point. The construction is not "a The Townname". The construction is "a (multi-word townname)" (as in "Carson's Corners" or "New York"). It just happens that one of the words in the multi-word name is "The".

    3. I still haven't made up my mind about how I would write the/The Dalles should I ever need to - I'm rather hoping I never need to. But I do know that if I wanted to please someone from there - not saying I would, but if I did - I'd need to write it The Dalles, and I also know that I'm determined to not allow this weirdness to spread. I might concede The Dalles. Maybe. If I'm in a good mood. Though I cannot imagine being in a good enough mood to cheerfully agree to "a The Dalles glass and window shop." But if the New Settlement folks aren't yet passionate about their the, either capped or not, I vote that we nip this oddness in the bud and not allow it to spread any further.
    What an interesting way to decide to edit -- based on your mood. Definitely not the way to ensure consistency of any kind. The consistent rule is that people are allowed to name towns whatever they wish and we have the obligation to follow their naming conventions, not ours.
     
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    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    James, in the first place, I never said that I haven't known of place names with the in them before - all I said was that I've never lived in one. What I didn't know was that there were any who were so attached to their capitalized The.

    Second, the reason for New in New York was originally to differentiate it from other Yorks that aren't new, right? Are there Dalles that The Dalles needs to differentiate itself from? And if so, may I suggest that there are more understandable ways to do so rather than the idiosyncratic The?

    Third, my post #27 isn't intended to represent my views as an editor. They are my views as a person who uses English. I'll wait until I have to edit something with a capped The before I make a decision on that. And long may I wait!

    Fourth, it sounds as though I've annoyed you, and if so, I do apologize. I have enjoyed this conversation (for me it was all in good let's-debate-English! fun) and found it enlightening - baffling but enlightening. I truly do think The is silly, but I mean no disrespect to those who think it isn't. I have plenty of foibles myself that you are welcome to tease me about - with no hard feelings, I promise.
     

    apoziopeza

    Senior Member
    slovak
    just wanted to say that this reply has made my day :)

    Scrotgrot, that sounds awfully...reasonable and sensible. Gosh.




    James, your post has convinced me of three things:

    1. The people of the/The Dalles are really attached to their "the," and also to it's being capitalized. Really attached. Weirdly attached, if I might say so. It's a harmless form of madness, and perhaps even a bit charming, in an offbeat sort of way, and in any case it's much less crazy than, say, the Flat Earth Society or those people who spend all their spare time trying to prove that Shakespeare didn't write plays.

    2. But although it's a harmless form of peculiarity, I have to say that using The as you demonstrate it is just nuts, OK? (It would be just as nuts if the were lowercase, by the way.) "I live in The Dalles" is slightly odd, but it's at least within the realm of what passes for normality in English. But come on: "a The Dalles traffic citation" is something that would make sense only to someone from this town, and what's more, it would make sense only to someone from this town who is passionately devoted to that The. What is the point of writing something that makes sense only to a very small group of people? The reaction of virtually everyone else would be either "That's a weird typo" or else, "OK, so they like to be called The Dalles. I get that. Are you telling me that they can't even let loose of that The when using Dalles as a modifier?"

    I really, really, really find it difficult to believe that every town or city in the English-speaking world that likes its the/The likes it even half as much as The Dalles does. I imagine some other town somewhere is devoted/passionate/eccentric enough to use that "a The Townname traffic citation" construction, but may I say that I kind of doubt there are very many?

    3. I still haven't made up my mind about how I would write the/The Dalles should I ever need to - I'm rather hoping I never need to. But I do know that if I wanted to please someone from there - not saying I would, but if I did - I'd need to write it The Dalles, and I also know that I'm determined to not allow this weirdness to spread. I might concede The Dalles. Maybe. If I'm in a good mood. Though I cannot imagine being in a good enough mood to cheerfully agree to "a The Dalles glass and window shop." But if the New Settlement folks aren't yet passionate about their the, either capped or not, I vote that we nip this oddness in the bud and not allow it to spread any further.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    James, in the first place, I never said that I haven't known of place names with the in them before - all I said was that I've never lived in one. What I didn't know was that there were any who were so attached to their capitalized The.
    This is the part that irritates me. The people of The Dalles are no more attached to "The" than the people of "Des Moines" are attached to the "Des" or the people of Los Angeles are weirdly attached to "Los". All of them are articles and those articles are part of their official name. They want to have their city name represented correctly. I don't think that's odd or weird or strangely attached, as you keep characterizing it. I think that's a fairly universal sentiment.

    Are you telling me that they can't even let loose of that The when using Dalles as a modifier?"
    Should I write "a Moines police officer" or "an Angeles city councilman"? Why would I alter the name because it contained an article?
     
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    JustKate

    Moderate Mod
    Again, I'm sorry if I've irritated you. Leaving out "weirdness," let me just say that whenever one comes across something that breaks the pattern - be it The Dalles, the kid mentioned in an article I edited who wanted his name written "Bo!" (yes, with the exclamation mark) or the titles of poems by e.e. cummings - each of us has to do the best he or she can at that moment to make sense of it - to decide how to handle an exception to the rule. When and if this ever comes up for me, all I can tell you is that I'll do the best I can to be fair, logical and consistent. I don't know what else to say.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    And what I am saying is that it is not an exception to a rule. It is an unusual town name, but it is treated consistently with the way any town name is treated: Los Angeles, Des Moines, The Dalles.
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    whenever one comes across something that breaks the pattern - be it The Dalles, the kid mentioned in an article I edited who wanted his name written "Bo!" (yes, with the exclamation mark) or the titles of poems by e.e. cummings - each of us has to do the best he or she can at that moment to make sense of it - to decide how to handle an exception to the rule.
    :confused:
    The normal rule is dead easy. You use the spelling and capitalisation that are correct for the name. New York, not new York; The Hague, not the Hague; Bo!, not Bo; e. e. cummings, not E E Cummings. These do not break a pattern and they are not exceptions to a rule, they are just names.

    When I was looking up place names in Britain for my earlier post, the gazetteer I used listed only one place name starting with "the" which was not capitalised. I regret that I have since discovered that it was a typographic error, and it should have been The Cot. So, if you want a rule for British place names, it is Any British place name starting with the definite article has the definite article capitalised. There appear to be no exceptions to that rule.
     

    lucas-sp

    Senior Member
    English - Californian
    There appear to be no exceptions to that rule.
    Oh. My. God. Did you find a rule in English with no exceptions to it?

    I also agree. If the name of the town is "The Cot" or "The Dalles," the "the" should always be capitalized. It's just the way the name is written.

    But I don't know if this is helpful for the original question. I think there the "the" shouldn't be capitalized. I compare it not to a town name but the name of a settlement, neighborhood, or colony, such as:

    living on the Bishop Indian Reservation
    living in the Oneida Community
    living in the Western Addition
    living in the Bronx (is this one going to be contentious?)
    etc.
     

    scrotgrot

    Senior Member
    English - English
    If it's a foreign article/determiner it's much more likely that it will be analysed as a normal part of the name. The cognitive dissonance will only be apparent to the most native of bilinguals. As a fluent speaker of French, and someone very aware of grammar, even I am untroubled by talking about a Des Moines police officer, the Notre Dame, the Le Mans 24 hours, but as I said in my earlier post something like a The Dalles traffic report is much more grating (though I would probably grit my teeth and use it anyway).

    The French (who are generally much more in tune with their own grammar than we are) have it even worse. Do you say à Le Mans or au Mans? Which lexical category does the article belong to, is it still a determiner or has it become subsumed into the noun? In France both are current.

    Oops, meant to quote JamesM (post 33).
     
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