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Reply to "Commas and Ship's Names"

Hi, Midge,

@Midge posted:

 

The steamship Titanic hit an iceberg.

Or

The steamship, Titanic, hit an iceberg.

 

Only the first one, which is a restrictive appositive, is correct: the proper name "Titanic" defines the steamship being referred to.

Alternatively, you can use a non-restrictive apposition with commas where the common noun merely provides extra information about the proper name, but in that case the order will be different:

- Titanic, the steamship, hit an iceberg.

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