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Beta (letter): Wikis


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Beta uc lc.svg
Greek alphabet
Αα Alpha Νν Nu
Ββ Beta Ξξ Xi
Γγ Gamma Οο Omicron
Δδ Delta Ππ Pi
Εε Epsilon Ρρ Rho
Ζζ Zeta Σσς Sigma
Ηη Eta Ττ Tau
Θθ Theta Υυ Upsilon
Ιι Iota Φφ Phi
Κκ Kappa Χχ Chi
Λλ Lambda Ψψ Psi
Μμ Mu Ωω Omega
Obsolete letters
Ϝϝ Digamma Ϙϙ Qoppa
Ϻϻ San Ϡϡ Sampi
Other characters
Ϛϛ Stigma Ϸϸ Sho
Ͱͱ Heta

Greek diacritics

Beta (uppercase Β, lowercase β, internal ϐ; Greek: Βήτα [ˈvita]) is the second letter of the Greek alphabet. In the system of Greek numerals it has a value of 2. It was derived from the Phoenician letter Beth Beth. Letters that arose from Beta include the Roman B and the Cyrillic letters Б and В.

In high-quality print, a variant of the letter is sometimes used that does not have a descender except at the beginning of a word: βίβλος is written βίϐλος. Lowercase ϐ is very common in handwriting.




Ancient Greek

In Ancient Greek, Beta represented a 'b' and the name of the letter, βῆτα, was pronounced something like [ˈbɛːta]. The name of the letter in English derives from this; the American pronunciation is /ˈbeɪtə/, whereas the British pronunciation is /ˈbiːtə/. See: American and British English pronunciation differences.

Modern Greek

In Modern Greek, it represents a voiced labiodental fricative /v/ and the Modern Greek name of the letter, Βήτα, is /ˈvita/.

Use as a symbol or name

Beta is often used to denote a variable in mathematics and physics, where it often has specific meanings for certain applications, such as representing beta particles, and beta radiation. In regression analysis, "B" symbolizes non-standardized partial slope coefficients, whereas "β" represents standardized (standard deviation-score form) coefficients; in both cases, the coefficients reflect the change in the criterion Y per one-unit change in the value of the associated predictor X.

In the International Phonetic Alphabet, Greek minuscule beta denotes a voiced bilabial fricative.

Common difficulties

In typesetting technical literature, it is a commonly made mistake to use the German letter ß as a replacement for the β. The two letters resemble each other superficially, but they are unrelated.

The Unicode number for β is U+03B2, and with β or β the β is coded in HTML. The internal version, ϐ, is encoded as U+03D0 in Unicode or ϐ in HTML.

Simple English

Common letters
ΑaA ΜmEm
ΒbBe ΝnEn
GgGe ΟοO
ΔdDe ΠpPe
hHa ЖжZhe
ΕɛE RrAr
ΖzZe SsEs
ΗeEe ΤtTe
ΘөEth UuU
ΙiI FfEf
JjJe WwWa
ΚkKa ΧxXa
LlEl ОWоwWe
Uncommon letters
Digamma Qoppa
San Sampi
Other letters
Stigma Sho

Greek alphabet

Beta (uppercase/lowercase Β β), is a letter of the Greek alphabet, used to represent the "b" sound in Ancient Greek and "v" in Modern Greek. In the system of Greek numerals, it has a value of 2. Letters that came from it include the Roman B and Cyrillic Б.

The sounds [b] and [v] resemble each other a lot. In the Ancient Greek the "b" sound became "v" around 200 BC. Therefore the letter B means the "v" sound in the Cyrillic alphabet, and a new letter, Б, was made for [b].


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