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h, eighth letter of the alphabet. It coincides to Semitic cheth and Greek eta (Η). It might derive from a very early symbol for fence. In the beforehand Greek alphabets a type via three horizontal bars and also the much easier develop H were both commonly spread. In Etrusdeserve to the prevailing develop was similar to the early Greek develop, and the very same or a similar form occurs in exceptionally early Latin inscriptions, however the develop H came right into basic usage in Latin, either from the Chalcidic Greek alphabet of Cumae or from some various other source. The modern-day majuscule H is derived straight from the Latin. The cursive Latin create resembled a stylized variation of the contemporary minuscule h, as did the uncial create. Both of these forms outcome from writing the letter without taking the pen from the paper, the right-hand also vertical bar being hence foreshortened and also the horizontal stroke rounded. From these came the Carolingian create and also the modern minuscule h.
In the alphabets offered to write the East Ionic language of Greek the letter came to be superfluous as an outcome of the loss of the aspirate which it represented in that language. It was appropriately put to a new usage to show the open lengthy e which had developed via change of the primitive Greek lengthy a. In a couple of engravings from Thera, Naxos, and also several other localities the letter was offered through syllabic value; that is, it consisted of he, hence showing its old consonantal and its brand-new vocalic value at the same time. Ultimately, as a result of the spread of the Ionic alphabet, its usage for the lengthy vowel e or η ended up being basic throughout Greece, while its consonantal value as the aspirate h passed from the western Greek alphabets right into the Etruscan alphabets and also then right into the Latin and various other alphabets of prehistoric Italy. In the Romance langueras the sound has actually mainly disshowed up, however the letter is still generally used, partially through just etymological value, (e.g., French homme), partially with fancied etymological worth (e.g., French haut from Latin altus, via h with the affect of hoh, the Old High German word of the same meaning), partly with distinct orthographical functions. For example, in Italian h is provided in combination with c or g to indicate the hard sound before a front vowel (e.g., chi, ghetto).
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In English the initial h is pronounced in words of Germanic origin (e.g., hunt, hook); in some words of Romance beginning, the h continues to be unpronounced (e.g., heir, honour), but in others it has actually been brought back (e.g., humble, humour). The initial h regularly disappears in unaccented syllables (e.g., “What did he say?”). In chemistry H is the symbol for the aspect hydrogen.