cap·​i·​tal·​ize | \ ˈka-pə-tə-ˌlīz How to pronounce capitalize (audio) , ˈkap-tə- \
capitalized; capitalizing

Definition of capitalize

transitive verb

1 : to write or print with an initial capital or in capitals Capitalize the names of cities and states.
2a : to convert into capital capitalize the company's reserve fund
b : to treat as an amortizable investment in long-term capital assets rather than as an ordinary operating expense to be charged against revenue for the period in which it is incurred capitalize development costs
3a : to compute the present value of (an income extended over a period of time)
b : to convert (a periodic payment) into an equivalent capital sum capitalized annuities
4 : to supply capital for

intransitive verb

: to gain by turning something to advantage capitalize on an opponent's mistake

Keep scrolling for more

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for capitalize



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of capitalize in a Sentence

Remember to capitalize the I in Internet. Capitalize the first word of your sentence. She rarely capitalizes her name when she signs her e-mails. The venture was capitalized with a loan of one million dollars. You can capitalize your investment at any time.
Recent Examples on the Web If Sony is able to capitalize on its proud history, this revamped PlayStation Plus may turn out to be a bigger deal than anyone expected. Gene Park, Washington Post, 16 May 2022 Outside of the game industry, companies such as Truist are looking to capitalize on the same interactive qualities that keep eyeballs glued to the screen for more mainline business activities. Suman Bhattacharyya, WSJ, 10 May 2022 While Thorne was able to capitalize off her massive following which translated into loyal OnlyFans subscribers, sources claim Content X had trouble replicating that success for its non-celebrity clients. Cheyenne Roundtree, Rolling Stone, 5 May 2022 On Tuesday, the leaders of the West sought to capitalize on Russia’s apparent lack of battlefield momentum to show Ukraine support and strengthen its resolve — and its arsenal. New York Times, 3 May 2022 The Panthers had a great opportunity to extend their lead early in the second with a two-man advantage for 51 seconds, but were unable to capitalize. Sun Sentinel, 28 Apr. 2022 Like Martinez, Nix needed a change in locale after failing to capitalize on his early success at Auburn. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, 27 Apr. 2022 Waltz Health is looking to capitalize on misalignment among the legacy players: what’s best for the PBM side of the business may not be best for the health plan side of the business, and this is where Waltz thinks its software can help. Katie Jennings, Forbes, 26 Apr. 2022 Instead, founders sought to capitalize on the breakout success of another Vietnamese company, Sky Mavis, which had developed a Pokemon-like battle game and ignited a boom in blockchain gaming, projected to be a $40 billion industry by 2025. Grady Mcgregor, Fortune, 16 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'capitalize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Keep scrolling for more

First Known Use of capitalize

1764, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for capitalize

(sense 1) capital entry 2 (sense 2) + -ize; (senses 2-4) borrowed from French capitaliser, from capital capital entry 2 + -iser -ize

Keep scrolling for more

Buying Guide

Our Reviews team has selected the best wireless keyboards.

Learn More About capitalize

Time Traveler for capitalize

Time Traveler

The first known use of capitalize was in 1764

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near capitalize



capitalize on

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for capitalize

Last Updated

21 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Capitalize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for capitalize


cap·​i·​tal·​ize | \ ˈka-pə-tə-ˌlīz How to pronounce capitalize (audio) \
capitalized; capitalizing

Kids Definition of capitalize

1 : to write with a beginning capital letter or in all capital letters
2 : to provide money needed to start or develop (a business)
3 : to gain by turning something to advantage The winner capitalized on his opponent's mistakes.

Other Words from capitalize

capitalization \ ˌka-​pə-​tə-​lə-​ˈzā-​shən \ noun


transitive verb
cap·​i·​tal·​ize | \ ˈka-pət-ᵊl-ˌīz How to pronounce capitalize (audio) \
capitalized; capitalizing

Legal Definition of capitalize

1a : to convert into capital capitalize the company's earnings
b : to treat as a capital expenditure rather than an ordinary and necessary expense the cost of the merger must be capitalized
2a : to compute the present value of (an income extended over a period of time) — compare amortize
b : to convert (a periodic payment) into an equivalent capital sum capitalized annuities
3 : to supply capital for had capitalized the business with her own savings

More from Merriam-Webster on capitalize

Nglish: Translation of capitalize for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of capitalize for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Food

  • a-light
  • Name these cookies!
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!