Talk:letter

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One who lets[edit]

I think we're missing the senses from let +‎ -er, e.g. a person who lets (rents out) a room, or one who performs blood-letting. Equinox 12:36, 24 September 2009 (UTC)

Added. Equinox 12:07, 23 June 2012 (UTC)

Origin of Letter[edit]

The origin of the word 'letter' is tamil word 'எழுத்து' Ezhutthu which means the written alphabets or any other symbol. In tamil grammatical book Tolkāppiyam , the first part is Ezhuttadikaram. This book has been dated variously between 8000 BCE and 10th CE. Just try to know these basis. The verb form of that word is 'எழுது' Ezhuthu which means 'to write'. This is origin of all the word literature, literary, etc., Can you allow this to add into this article ?

ezhutthu + ar -> elutthu + ar -> elett(h)er -> lett(h)er.

Actually, tamil word 'எழுத்து' has a root இலு (இழு) 'ilu' which means pull. --Inbamkumar86 (talk) 12:05, 23 June 2012 (UTC)

Ancient method of writing is to pull the sharpness of the big needle on the palm leaf. So then, ezhu, uzhu are different form of tamil root ilu for different type of pullings. uzhu goes to agriculture. ezhu goes to write. If you read the etymology of all these words in tamil, then it is easy to know that letter is derived from the tamil word 'எழுத்து' Ezhutthu. --Inbamkumar86 (talk) 12:10, 23 June 2012 (UTC)

Please read this reference : http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:0zkh5DiFmeoJ:valavu.blogspot.com/2011/07/3.html+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk

--Inbamkumar86 (talk) 12:13, 23 June 2012 (UTC)

Let’s analyse this. The word “letter” could have come from:
  • Old French letre < Latin littera. All sound changes perfectly explained by the phonological histories of English and Old French. Borrowed from a language in direct contact with English.
  • Tamil “ezhutthu”. Applying random sound-change rules which didn’t occur in English to half the phonemes until the word acquires the desired form. Borrowed from a language which didn’t have contact with English until colonialism.
  • Internetish “trololol”. With syllabic metathesis it becomes “lolotro”, with haplology it becomes “lotro”, with metathesis “lotor”, unstressed vowel centralisation “lotər”, back-vowel fronting “lœtər”, vowel unrounding “lɛtər” == letter.
See? I can apply real sound changes to any word until it becomes the one I want. — Ungoliant (Falai) 14:51, 24 June 2012 (UTC)
From 12th century through 14th century, the word "letter" defines as below,
  • mid-12c., 'graphic symbol, written character,' from O.Fr. lettre, from L. littera (also litera) "letter of the alphabet," of uncertain origin, perhaps from Gk. diphthera "tablet," with change of d- to l- as in lachrymose. In this sense it replaced O.E. bocstæf, lit. "book staff" (cf. Ger. Buchstabe "letter, character," from O.H.G. buohstab, from P.Gmc. *bok-staba-m). The pl. litteræ in Latin meant "epistle, written documents, literature," a sense first attested early 13c. in M.E., replacing O.E. ærendgewrit, lit. "errand-writing." School letter in sports, first awarded by U. of Chicago football coach Amos Alonzo Stagg.
  • late 14c., from L. lit(t)eratura "learning, writing, grammar," originally "writing formed with letters," from lit(t)era "letter." Originally "book learning" (it replaced O.E. boccræft), the meaning "literary production or work" is first attested 1779 in Johnson's "Lives of the English Poets" (he didn't include this definition in his dictionary, however); that of "body of writings from a period or people" is first recorded 1812.

And also we have a proof that Tamil speaking land have had trade relations with Western countries for about more than 2500 years. The above mentioned book Tholkapiyam is definetely written before 12th century. There is a possibilities of having Tamil origin. --Inbamkumar86 (talk) 21:15, 5 April 2013 (UTC)

w:Plautus was using the word in the 3rd century BCE. It's probably older than that. Trade relations usually mean that words are borrowed for things without a word of their own in the borrowing language. Since writing was well known in the ancient Mediterranean, with a history going back more than a couple of millenia earlier than that, borrowing from a distant country seems highly unlikely. Besides, where are the intermediate forms in the languages in between? Chuck Entz (talk) 00:13, 6 April 2013 (UTC)