#EngKnowledge: History of ampersand

Yes, the symbol “&” is called ampersand. In this post, we will talk about its origin and history.

The ampersand (&) is used by Old Roman since more than 1,500 years ago. In the 1st century, Roman wrote in cursive, so when they wrote the Latin word “et” which means “and” they connect the e and t.

The ampersand symbol keeps evolving until the form of the symbol that is used today.

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The name “ampersand” is rarely used until the 19th century, from “and per se and”.

In 1800s, the symbol ampersand (&) was actually part of the English alphabet. Since it would have been confusing to say “X, Y, Z, and.” So, people called the symbol “&”, “and per se and.”

The word “per se” means “by itself.”, so ”and per se and” means “and [the symbol] by itself is and.” Over time, “and per se and” was slurred together into the word we use today: ampersand.

 

Source: What Character Was Removed from the Alphabet?

Compiled and written by @AnienditaR at @EnglishTips4u on Saturday, October 1, 2016

 

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^MQ

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