Where did the letter Z come from?

Last Letter in the Alphabet

Man first tried to write down his language by drawing pictures of objects on rocks and other surfaces.

Some scholars think that in the beginning the letter “Z,” the last letter in our alphabet, came from a symbol the ancient Egyptians used for a weapon.

In making the first alphabet, the Semites, who once lived in Syria and Palestine, used the old Egyptian weapon picture-word for one of the letters.

They called the new letter “zaying,” and made it look like this (=) .  Later, the letter changed in shape to look like this  ( l ).

The Greeks, after the alphabet came to them, changed the letter to look like the Z we use today, and called it “zeta.”

The Romans borrowed the alphabet from the Greeks, and moved the Z to the end of the alphabet without changing it.

Today, Z is the letter least frequently used in books and other material printed in English. – Dick Rogers


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