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There used to be only 25 letters in our "Modern Roman" alphabet. Which letter was added later, and when?

Question #50970. Asked by peasypod.
Last updated Sep 22 2021.

Answer has 4 votes
21 year member
530 replies

Answer has 4 votes.
May I recommend this site from the University of Maryland, which shows the way that a number of alphabets have evolved over time. It's really quite cool.


Response last updated by satguru on Sep 22 2021.
Sep 13 2004, 8:42 AM
Answer has 2 votes
21 year member
3194 replies

Answer has 2 votes.
As for the standard 26 letter alphabet used in English, I'm pretty sure the newest letter is the letter J. Both vowel i and consonant j were represented by I until the 15th century. Then some of the monks working on illustrated manuscripts began to lengthen the I and curve it left when it began a word. Gradually this came to represent the consonant sound with the old form used for the vowel sound. The consonant sound is originally thought to have been like our y (so Julius was pronounced Yulius). The dzh sound came from Old French which has since softened in modern French.

Sep 13 2004, 5:02 PM
satguru star
Answer has 5 votes
Currently Best Answer
satguru star
21 year member
1247 replies avatar

Answer has 5 votes.

Currently voted the best answer.
It is W, which replaced a Runic Wynn with a double Latin VV in the 1300, following a U and J also added later than the others.


Sep 22 2021, 6:51 PM
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