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Egypt
thE quEst for immortality




q        ’s quest starts in the mid 1500s bc. she was in the
         Pharaoh’s domain and like everyone there she dreamed of
          999immortality. her symbol was a hill top or a slope that is
believed to have had the phonetic value of a deep k or what linguists
call a voiceless uvular plosive. Comparable to the modern arabic or
hebrew quaf.
  she lived under the reign of Pharaoh ahmose i who was the first
Egyptian king to venture outside of the usual Egyptian ruled territory
of upper and lower Egypt. after defeating his rivals the hyskos in
lower Egypt and taking over the delta, he moved north to Phoenician
cities. he ventured as far as heliopolis and Byblos. the phoenicians
didn’t resist the Egyptians but in fact accepted their presence in their
cities on grounds of economic cooperation. this period actually saw
a peak in trade between the two people as Egyptians bought Cedar
wood and tyrian Purple dye, and sold the Phoenicians Granite and
other stones that were abundant in both sinai and upper Egypt. q
eventually settled in the sinai desert.
  in proto-sinaitic script she looked like an 9 and was for the first time
called qoph. she was torn between her hieroglyphic roots and the
arising need for a phonetic alphabet that can convey information in a
more modern and economical way. in the next stage she evolved to
look more like she does today.
Phoenicia
thE quEst for wEalth




q
        moved north with the proto-canaanite alphabet.
        it was also known as the Proto-sinaitic alphabet because it
        9999was used briefly in southern Canaan, and considered to be
an intermediate writing system used by the Phoenicians as a base for
the abstract forms we now call letters.
  the Phoenician civilization was an enterprising maritime trad-
ing culture spreading across the mediterranean between the period
of 1550 bc to 300 bc. their love for the sea attracted q who dreamt
of conquering the world. like all Phoenician letters she had to have
a nickname that described what she looked like and the sound she
represents; qoph or Eye of the Needle. she represented a ‘deep
K’ sound different from the ‘shallow K’ used today in the English
language.
  Phoenician merchants spread the new writing system through their
use of it in their daily trade functions. it was used in book-keeping and
the description of content on jars. however the biggest difference from
earlier writing systems is that it was a multilingual script; proper names
can be spelled and pronounced accurately regardless of their origin or
meaning.
  this was the birth of a comprehensive and phonetic writing system
known as the alphabet; named after the first two letters aleph and
Bet. q ranked 17th out of 20 Phoenician letters, but she was the initial
of famous Phoenicians like qadmus who delivered her and her peers
to the Greeks.
Greece
thE quEst for KNowlEdGE




q
            admus brought to greece the revolutionthat
            was going to change the world forever. writing became
            easier and more versatile with the arrival of the phonetic
writing system. and more importantly the world had a multilingual
alphabet.
  But the Greeks wouldn’t simply accept what their rivals of the sea
created. they questioned the right-to-left direction the Phoenicians
used, and eventually changed it into boustrophedon and later
left-to-right.
  the Greeks also came up with new Greek names for the letters.
quoph was renamed qoppa and together with Kappa 9aka Kaph9,
represented the sound K instead of the deep q sound it was designed
for. that deep q was non-existant in the Greek language and as years
went by Greeks thought that the presence of two symbols for one
sound was just crowding their alphabet and one had to be sacrificed.
although once the symbol for Corinth and a big part of Greek culture,
qoppa was no longer used by the Greeks.
  the Greeks eventually dropped three of the Phoenician letters but
also added new letters most notabely vowels. the Greek alphabet will
work as a base for the latin or roman alphabet.
rome
thE quEst for PowEr




the Greeks ceased the use of q when she was deemed unneces-
sary, this was about to end q’s quest. the dream of immortality q
had in the Egyptian days started to fade. But the Etruscan alphabet
which was based on western Greek, saved her and delivered her to the
romans who fell in love with her. the romans loved q so much that
they included her in their motto sPqr 9senatus Populusque romanus:
the senate and People of rome9 that represented their Government
and City, despite the fact that she wasn’t an initial letter of any of the
abbreviated words.
  after romulus and remus founded rome the romans quickly
adopted the Etruscan alphabet and refined it extensively to become
what we call today the roman alphabet 9 the basis for the latin script.
the letterforms were elaborately redesigned for government use and
as a sign of roman pride. much of the look and feel that resulted from
that refinement was due to the fact that romans chiseled their text in
stone. text that often described victorious Emperors and Epic tales.
these were times of grandeur for q and the other lettes as they were
only writte in capitals, minuscules and lowercase letters had to be
reinvented later.

				
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