What is the oldest letter in the alphabet and what is the most recent?
#113654. Asked by star_gazer. (Mar 26 10 12:02 AM)
The oldest letter in our alphabet is o, which has existed in its present form for more than 3,000 years!|
J is the last addition to our modern alphabet. Scholars kept it from dictionaries until the late 19th century. It is descended from I, and in medieval times was used as a consonantal form of I. J is one of only two capitol letters with a descender (the other being Q).
More about O:
O and capitol I make up the two basic forms of all letters in our modern alphabet. O is unique also in that its forms are basically the same between upper and lower-case letters. The letter descended from the the Semitic “ayin” which meant the word “eye” in Phoenician. The Greeks adapted O from the Phoenicians and used it as the vowel “omnicron” in their early alphabet. In later Greek a break occured between the two Greek variant alphabets — the Chalcidean (west) and Ionion (east). Chalcidian became the basis of the Roman alphabet, wheras the eastern, or Ionion, became classic Greek. The Ionian alphabet replaced the O for omega, placing it at the end of their alphabet.
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