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O
Basic Latin alphabet
Aa Bb Cc Dd    
Ee Ff Gg Hh
Ii Jj Kk Ll Mm Nn
Oo Pp Qq Rr Ss Tt
Uu Vv Ww Xx Yy Zz

O is the fifteenth letter of the basic modern Latin alphabet. Its name in English (pronounced /ˈoʊ/) is spelled o; the plural is oes, though usage of this is rare.[1]

Contents

History

Egyptian hieroglyph
ir
Proto-Semitic O Phoenician
ayin
Etruscan O Greek
Omicron
D4
Proto-semiticO-01.svg PhoenicianO-01.png EtruscanO-01.svg Omicron uc lc.svg

The letter was derived from the Semitic `Ayin (eye), which represented a consonant, probably the voiced pharyngeal fricative (IPA: [ʕ]), the sound represented by the Arabic letter ع called `Ayn. This Semitic letter in its original form seems to have been inspired by a similar Egyptian hieroglyph for "eye".

The Greeks are thought to have come up with the innovation of vowel characters, and lacking a pharyngeal consonant, employed this letter as the Greek O to represent the vowel /o/, a sound it maintained in Etruscan and Latin. In Greek, a variation of the form later came to distinguish this long sound (Omega, meaning "large O") from the short o (Omicron, meaning "small o").

Its graphic form has also remained fairly constant from Phoenician times until today. Indeed, even alphabets constructed "from scratch", i.e. not derived from Semitic, usually have similar forms to represent this sound—for example the creators of the Afaka and Ol Chiki scripts, each invented in different parts of the world in the last century, both attributed their vowels for 'O' to the shape of the mouth when making this sound.

Usage

O is most commonly associated with the close-mid back rounded vowel [o] in many languages. This form is colloquially termed the "long o" in English, but it is actually most often a diphthong /oʊ/ (realized dialectically anywhere from [o] to [əʊ]).

In English there is also a "short O", which also has several pronunciations. In most dialects of English English, it is an open back rounded vowel [ɒ]; in North America, it is most commonly an unrounded back to central vowel [ɑː] to [a].

O is used at some times to mean Zero(0), which is a number. It is not wrong to use it as a number in phone numbers, room numbers, etc.

Common digraphs include OO, which represents either /ʊ/ or /uː/; OI which typically represents the diphthong /ɔɪ/; and OA, OE, and OU represent a variety of pronunciations depending on context and etymology.

Other languages use O for various values, usually back vowels which are at least partly open. Derived letters such as Ö and Ø have been created for the alphabets of some languages to distinguish values that were not present in Latin and Greek, particularly rounded front vowels.

In the International Phonetic Alphabet, [o] represents the close-mid back rounded vowel.

Codes for computing

Alternative representations of O
NATO phonetic Morse code
Oscar –––
ICS Oscar.svg Semaphore Oscar.svg ⠕
Signal flag Flag semaphore Braille

In Unicode, the capital O is codepoint U+004F and the lowercase o is U+006F.

The ASCII code for capital O is 79 and for lowercase o is 111; or in binary 01001111 and 01101111, correspondingly.

The EBCDIC code for capital O is 214 and for lowercase o is 150.

The numeric character references in HTML and XML are "O" and "o" for upper and lower case respectively.

See also

References

  1. ^ "P" Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition (1989); Chambers-Happap, "oes" op. cit. Oes is the plural of the name of the letter. The plural of the letter itself is Os, O's, os, o's.
The Basic modern Latin alphabet
Aa Bb Cc Dd Ee Ff Gg Hh Ii Jj Kk Ll Mm Nn Oo Pp Qq Rr Ss Tt Uu Vv Ww Xx Yy Zz
Letter O with diacritics

history palaeography derivations diacritics punctuation numerals Unicode list of letters ISO/IEC 646



Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

The Universal Character Set
LetterO.svg
Unicode name LATIN CAPITAL LETTER O
Basic Latin U+004F

Contents

Translingual

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Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

Letter

O upper case (lower case o)

  1. The fifteenth letter of the basic modern Latin alphabet.

See also

Symbol

O

  1. (chemistry) Symbol for oxygen.
  2. (mathematics) The upper bound function also known as big O.

See also

Other representations of O:


English

Pronunciation

Abbreviation

O

  1. (cricket) The number of overs bowled.

Letter

Singular
O

Plural
O's

O (plural O's)

  1. The fifteenth letter of the English alphabet, preceded by N and followed by P.
  2. A blood type that lacks A or B antigens and may only receive transfusions of similar type O blood, but may donate to all (neglecting Rh factor). Synonym: universal donor.
  3. (printing) American Library Association Abbreviation of octavo, a book size (20-25 cm).

Particle

O

  1. (grammar) The English vocative particle (always in upper case), used for direct address in translations from languages which have the vocative case.
    O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? -- Galatians 3:1

Derived terms

Usage notes

This is one of the few grammatical particles English has, and it is borrowed via the various translations of the Bible. Irish is the last Indo-European language which does have it (as a full-blown grammatical case, unlike English, not resurrected but rather preserved), and indeed does it with the capital O.

Interjection

O

  1. Expression of earnestness or reverence, used before the name of a deity or revered person in impassioned speech.

Synonyms


American Sign Language

Letter

O (Stokoe O)

  1. The letter O

Dutch

Pronunciation

  • (letter name): IPA: /oː/

Letter

O (capital, lowercase o)

  1. The fifteenth letter of the Dutch alphabet.

See also

  • Previous letter: N
  • Next letter: P

Galician

Abbreviation

O

  1. oeste, occidente (west)

Synonyms

  • (west): W

Italian

Pronunciation

Noun

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Italian Wikipedia has an article on:
O

Wikipedia it

O m. and f. inv.

  1. The thirteenth letter of the Italian alphabet
  2. The fifteenth letter of the Latin alphabet

Romanian

Pronunciation

Letter

O (capital, lowercase o)

  1. The eighteenth letter of the Romanian alphabet representing the phoneme /o/. Preceded by N and followed by P.

Usage notes

When followed by the letter a, a dipthong representing the phoneme /o̯a/ is formed, as in foarte /'fo̯ar.te/


Slovene

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Slovene Wikipedia has an article on:
O

Wikipedia sl

Pronunciation

Letter

O (capital, lowercase o)

  1. The 16th letter of the Slovene alphabet. Preceded by N and followed by P.

Spanish

Letter

O (upper case, lower case o)

  1. The 18th letter of the Spanish alphabet.

Simple English

The Latin alphabet
Aa Bb Cc Dd
Ee Ff Gg Hh Ii Jj
Kk Ll Mm Nn Oo Pp
Qq Rr Ss Tt Uu Vv
Ww Xx Yy Zz

O is the fifteenth (number 15) letter in the English alphabet.

Meanings for O









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