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Showing posts from March, 2018

Genesis 10-11: The Tower of Babel

Interrobang: The Latest Punctuation Mark

With the addition of the letter J to the Roman alphabet in the early 16th century, languages that use that alphabet haven’t seen any new letters.  It’s hard to make the case for a new letter once literacy is widespread, since at that point, most everyone will already agree that the letters currently in use are enough.  The same thing goes for punctuation marks: who needs a new one, and how can you convince anyone to adopt it?You’d need marketing skills to pull that off.
Perhaps it’s unsurprising that it took an ad man to invent and promote a new punctuation mark, which he did with some success.  This visionary was Martin K. Speckter, the head of Martin K. Speckter and Associates, a Manhattan advertising agency.In 1962, Speckter proposed the addition of a new punctuation mark in an article he wrote for Typetalks magazine, a trade publication about printing and typography.  The idea was that advertisers needed a new punctuation mark to convey disbelief.For example, the phrase “You call t…

The Lost Letter Eth (ð)