Monday, February 23, 2009

everything you ever wanted to know about H

Hello, howdy, hey, hi, hullo,

A short history on the evolution of the letter H: The American Heritage dictionary says the letter heth originally represented a consonant h in Semitic languages which included Phoenician. When the early (eastern) Greeks adopted the Phoenician alphabet they used this letter for their h sound or "rough breathing." In the eastern Ionic dialect the h was lost. Later both western Greeks and Romans used an alphabet that retained the h and from them came the symbol that the Romans simplified to the modern form of the letter H.

In ancient Egyptian the hieroglyph for fence was most likely the starting point of the symbol we recognize today as H.The Proto-Semitic H appeared as:
The Phoenician H was represented by this mark:
The Etruscan H was:
In the Greek alphabet the H appeared in this recognizable form.

And finally the H in Latin:

Henry VIII by Hans Holbein the Younger

Beginning with H:

Names and Places: Hong Kong, Hitchcock, Haiti, Holland, Hoboken, Ho Chi Minh-the city and the person, Nathan Hale, Jimmy Hoffa, Hungary, Hawaii, Hammurabi, Homer-the cartoon character, the poet and the artist, Honduras, Honolulu, Hoosier, Harry Houdini, Hadrian and his wall, New Hampshire, and the Hamptons, Helene Hanff-favorite writer, five former presidents-Warren G. Harding, William Henry Harrison, Herbert Hoover, Rutherford B. Hayes and Benjamin Harrison.

Food: hashbrowns, honey, hominy, honeydew melon, hummus, ham, hamburger, hot dog, horseradish, herring, halibut, haggis, Hershey's chocolates, hot tamales, hoagies, herbs, and hen

The most famous, most used sans-serif typeface in the advertising world is Helvetica. It even has it's own documentary. My son Brandon and I watched it this summer while we were on vacation in Florida...cause we are weird like that.

This clip is really long, so you may not want to watch it all. That won't hurt my feelings. But if you love typology you will be interested.

Please don't make fun of us......

H words that we should use more often:

harbinger, hoity toity, hassle, hillbilly, harridan, hope chest, hootchy-kootchy, hushpuppy, harrumph, hodgepodge, harmonious, hokum, hindsight, hoopla, hippogriff, hinterland, hornswoggle, hipster, hurdy-gurdy, hobnob, hunky-dory, huzzah, hosanna, hyacinth, hooligan, halcyon, hooray, hopscotch, hijinks, hog heaven, hightops, harangue, haberdashery, hullabaloo

My birth year makes me a Horse in the Chinese zodiac. Here is what a horse is supposed to be like. I'm not sure this is totally me:

1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002

People born in the Year of the Horse are popular. They are cheerful, skillful with money, and perceptive, although they sometimes talk too much. The are wise, talented, good with their hands, and sometimes have a weakness for members of the opposite sex. They are impatient and hot-blooded about everything except their daily work. They like entertainment and large crowds. They are very independent and rarely listen to advice. They are most compatible with Tigers, Dogs, and Sheep.

As far as I know, there is no goodbye word that starts with H so I will have to end this with a simple you and you and you! So long farewell!

I was supposed to name 10 H things that I really liked. I'm not too good at following directions. If you would like a letter to write about and would like to do as you're told....visit Betsy at My Five Men. And tell her I'm sorry while you're over there please.


  1. You little rebel, you! Ha-ha! I like the history, anyway! And I promise to try to use words like hooligan, haberdashery, and hullabaloo more often! :)

  2. This was great, Stevie! I use many of these "h" words on a regular basis - particularly "harangue".
    I love hummus too. Oh, and hashbrowns (wait, I think I have some in the freezer. Is it lunch yet?)


  3. My dear, I would tell you to take up knitting or sewing, but that would be far less educational.

    I'm glad you're enjoying your literary madness! =] We do too!


  4. Thought I'd come by and hobnob and I'm in hog heaven with these h words. Good by starting with h? Hey bye ya'll.

  5. Huzzah for the halcyon days of H! Such a hullabaloo and yet in hindsight, quite harmonious. Is this a harbinger of hokum to come. (And are you sure you don't sometimes have a weakness for members of the opposite sex???)

  6. I like the Hog that begins with H. The country fried bacon is the best in the world.

    I also like this post.

    I suppose you are going to do the entire alphabet. Good luck.

  7. Hi Abe, thanks for visiting. Drop in anytime. I like Hacon too! : )

    Rosezilla, I only fall prey to the hotties!

  8. This makes me think of Sesame Street, and the muppet coming up shiftily to a passerby and saying, "Psssssst, hey, ya wanna buy a letter?"

  9. Wow! That was a comprehensive lesson in 'H', the evolution of 'H'and about Helvetica font (very interesting). Very educational Steviewren. Thanks - Dave

  10. How'd I miss this post? I love the letter H! IT looks so cool on the page. One of the coolest looking letters for sure. I like your H words. I've often used the word harridan, it comes in sooooo handy....

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