The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary







X is the twenty-fourth letter of the Latin alphabet. It is also the form of St Andrew's Cross .

/ks/ was in Ancient Greece written as Chi 'Χ' (Western Greek) or Xi 'Ξ' (Eastern Greek). In the end, Chi was standardized as (the voiceless velar fricative /x/ in Modern Greek) as well as Xi for /ks/. But the Etruscans took over X from older Western Greek, therefore, it stood for /ks/ in Etruscan and /ks/ and /gs/ [gz] in Latin. Only in Kurdish, Azeri, Uzbek, Tatar and Lojban as well as the IPA and SAMPA (the latter is used here) is X pronounced [x] (as in German Bach). Some scholars claim that Latin X is not identical with Greek Χ.

It is also controversial whether Psi, Chi (Khi) and Xi are Greek inventions or whether they are ultimately of Semitic origin.

The letter X is not used in the Italian language, except for words borrowed from other languages, or names of foreigners. No words in the Basic English vocabulary begin with X, but it occurs in words beginning with other letters.

The letter X is spoken as X-ray in the NATO phonetic alphabet.

Meanings for X

See also


Similar non-Latin letters:

Unicode has also several similar non-letter symbols:

  • × : multiplication sign
  • ╳ : box drawings left diagonal cross
  •  : multiplication x
  •  : ballot x
  •  : heavy ballot x
  •  : vector or cross product

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