X letter PNG Transparent Images

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Submitted by on Mar 15, 2020

In ancient Greek, ‘Χ’ and ‘Ψ’ were part of several variants of the same letter, used initially for / kʰ / and later, in western regions such as Arcadia, as a simplification of the digraph ‘ΧΣ ‘for / ks /. In the end, more conservative oriental forms became the standard of classical Greek, and thus ‘Χ’ (Chi) represented / kʰ / (later / x /; palatalized in [ç] in modern Greek before the vowels in front. ). However, the Etruscans had taken over from “Χ” in Western Greek, so it means / ks / in Etruscan and Latin.

The letter ‘Χ’ ~ ‘Ψ’ for / kʰ / was a Greek addition to the alphabet, placed after the Semitic letters with the phi ‘Φ’ for / pʰ /.

English

In English orthography, ⟨x⟩ is generally pronounced as the voiceless consonant cluster /ks/ when it follows the accented vowel (e.g., the ox) and the consonant / ɡz / when it precedes the stressed vowel (e.g., the exam). It is also pronounced / ɡz / when it precedes a silent ⟨h⟩ and a stressed vowel (e.g., escape).

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There are very few English words starting with ⟨x⟩ (the smallest of any letter). When ⟨x⟩ begins with a word, it is generally pronounced / z / (e.g., xylophone, xenophobia, and xanthan); in recent rare loanwords or foreign proper names, it can also be pronounced / s / (for example, obsolete Vietnamese monetary unit xu) or / ʃ / (for example, Chinese names starting with Xi such as Xiaomi or Xinjiang ). Many words starting with ⟨x⟩ are of Greek origin or have standardized marks (Xerox) or acronyms (XC). In abbreviations, it can represent “trans-” (e.g., XMIT for transmission, XFER for transfer), “cross-” (for example X-ing for crossing, XREF for cross-reference), “Christ-” as short for the labarum (for example Xmas for Christmas, Xian for Christian), the crystal “crys-” (XTAL), or various words starting with “ex-” (for example XL for extra-wide, XOR for exclusive or).

X is the third least used letter in English (after ⟨q⟩ and ⟨z⟩), with a frequency of about 0.15% in words.

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