Ingenious Ideas For You To Explore With The English Alphabet: A Study of Symbol

An Alphabet (from Greek alpha and beta ) is a set of letters or other symbols used to represent sounds, so that letters combined into syllables and words convey through the eye the same ideas as are conveyed through the ear by sounds. A perfect alphabet would neither have more than one letter for any one sound, nor express more sounds than one by one letter. These letters can be combined to write all the words of a language. But alphabet commonly has more letters than one for some of the sounds in the language, that is, they are redundant:

 (1) Because some new letter has been introduced with new words from another language using a different sign for the sound, as in English K has been introduced expressing the same sound as C (hard), and has taken its place in many words.

(2) Because pronunciation has changed and assimilated sounds of letters which once were different, as the pronunciation of C before E and i, which was hard, has been assimilated to s, or the soft c of the French language.

(3) On the other hand, alphabets commonly express more sounds than one by one letter, that is, they are deficient: small varieties of sound are too many to be distinguished at the early stage of a language when writing is first used in a nation, as of vowel-sounds, ache, bat ; being, bed;; brute, but.

(4) Or because intercourse with other nations brings in new sounds without new signs for them, as ch in cherry, z in azure, u in pure.

 (5) Or because such intercourse lessens the distinction between two sounds, so that one sign is lost and the remaining one serves for both, as in English th stands for dh in this, and for th in thing.

The English alphabet of twenty-six letters, now used, is the common Latin alphabet (which was spread by the Romans over Western Europe), with one letter, w, added.

Letters of the alphabet that generally stand for sounds made with a partially open or open mouth: A, E, I, O, U, and sometimes Y (as in myth, style, cyber….).

Letters of the alphabet that stand for sounds often made with a partially closed or closed mouth: B, C, D, F, G, H, J, K, L, M, N, P, Q, R, S, T, V, W, X, Z, and sometimes Y (as in yellow, yell, yes…..)

The letters have two forms :—

The capital—A. B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z.

The small—a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, k, 1, m, n, o, p, q, r, s, t, u, v, w, x, y, z.
Letters are Vowels, expressing sound by themselves, A, E, I, O, U ; a, e, i, o, u :

Or Consonants, requiring a vowel to be sounded with B, C, D, F, G, H, J, K, L, M, N, P, Q, R, S, T, V, X, Z.

   Ardhendu De

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An English Teacher;    M. A.(English) , D. Ed., B. Ed., UGC- NET Qualified

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