Letter Perfect, by David Sacks

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I’ve had this book around for 2 or 3 years — I kept reading a chapter or two, then putting it down. I finally got through it the past few weeks — it’s an interesting book. It’s all about our alphabet, and how it came to be the way it is, in terms of which letters are in our alphabet, how they look, and how they sound. After the introduction, there’s a chapter for each letter — some are better than others, for sure. My favorite is on the letter “E” (always the glory hog, at least in English — see, there E goes again, starting that word) — and how it’s derived from a semitic character that is itself derived from an earlier character that was effectively “hey!” — both in meaning & pronunciation — and that the capital E letter shape itself is really from a person with both arms up yelling (rotate it counter-clockwise 90 degrees — teh end bars are the person’s arms, the middle is the head). Funny.

Anyway, fun book for letter & type nerds.

2 Replies to “Letter Perfect, by David Sacks”

  1. Hi, John. I gave a tiny review to the book at my bulletin board, and while looking for an Amazon link, I came across your more descriptive review. The book was a joy to read, and it came in handy, as I’m now able to explain to my Chinese and Mexican students why letters are shaped the way they are.http://rudycarrera.com/bbpress

  2. Hi, John. I gave a tiny review to the book at my bulletin board, and while looking for an Amazon link, I came across your more descriptive review. The book was a joy to read, and it came in handy, as I’m now able to explain to my Chinese and Mexican students why letters are shaped the way they are.
    http://rudycarrera.com/bbpress

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