Q is the 17th letter of the Latin alphabet.
The Semitic sound value of Qôp was /q/ (voiceless uvular plosive). In Greek this sign (called Qoppa in Greek) probably came to represent several labialized velar plosives, among them /k_w/ and /k_w_h/. These sounds changed to /p/ and /p_h/ respectively. Therefore, Qoppa was transformed into two letters: Qoppa, which stood for a number only, and Φι (Phi) which stood for the aspirated sound /p_h/ that came to be pronounced /f/ in Modern Greek. The Etruscans used Q only in conjunction with V, symbolizing thus a /k_w/. Some scholars claim that Q and Phi are unrelated.
In most modern languages, Q is rather superfluous; in Romance and Germanic languages it appears almost exclusively in the digraph QU. In English this digraph most often denotes the cluster /kw/, as it does in Italian (where [w] is an allophone of /u/); in German, /kv/; and in French, Spanish, and Catalan, /k/. (In Spanish and in French, "qu" replaces c for /k/ before the vowels i and e, since in those contexts c is a fricative.). In the Azeri, Uzbek, and Tatar languages, Q is pronounced the same as the Semitic sound /q/, and Q is often used to transliterate /q/ Semitic languages. In Maltese and Võro, Q denotes the glottal stop.
Quebec represents the letter Q in the NATO phonetic alphabet.
Meanings for Q
- In biblical criticism, Q is an abbreviation used by scholars of the New Testament to describe the Q document, a hypothetical lost written "source" (German, Quelle, hence, Q) behind the Synoptic Gospels.
- In biochemistry, Q is the symbol for glutamine.
- in chess, Q is a notation symbol for the queen piece
- In computing:
- In engineering, Q is a symbol for characterizing filters; see Q factor. Q stands for quality.
- In English, Q can be an abbreviation for 'question'.
- In film, Q is a character in the James Bond series; see Q (James Bond) (see also: science fiction, below).
- in financial securities, Q is the stock symbol for Qwest Communications International Inc.
- In international licence plate codes, Q stands for Qatar.
- In Financial economics q stands for Tobin's-q.
- In literature,
- In marketing, Q is sometimes used as a synonym for Q Score
- In mathematics, blackboard bold represents the rational numbers.
- In medicine, Q is the name of a bacterial infection; see Q fever. "q" also is a medical abbreviation for every, often used to specify drug dosing schedules (e.g., q6h indicates every 6 hours; q4w indicates 4 times per week).
- In military science, Q is the name for anti-submarine ships; see Q-ship.
- In phonetics, lowercase [q] is the International Phonetic Alphabet symbol for the voiceless uvular plosive.
- In physics, Q is a symbol for electric charge or heat.
- In fusion power, Q is the symbol for the fusion energy gain factor
- In a deck of playing cards, Q is used to mark each of the queens.
- In publishing, Q is the name of a British music magazine; see Q magazine
- In radiotelegraphy and amateur radio, the Q code is a set of three-letter code signals.
- In science fiction, Q is a character in several Star Trek spin-off series; see Q (Star Trek).
- In Video Games, Q is a character in Capcom's Street Fighter series of fighting games.
- Q was also the name for a number of comedy series written by and starring Spike Milligan
- Q is an acronym for queue
- In economics, Q is usually used to represent quantity.
- Q is an acronym for "queer", an appropriation of the historically pejorative word, now used neutrally or positively by those who strongly reject traditional gender identities.