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capital letter

a letter of the alphabet that usually differs from its corresponding lowercase letter in form and height, as A, B, Q, and R as distinguished from a, b, q, and r : used as the initial letter of a proper name, the first word of a sentence, etc.
Also called capital. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Word Origin and History for capital letter

late 14c.; see capital (adj.). So called because it is at the "head" of a sentence or word.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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