(Editor's note: This is the first in 26 semi-consecutive [excluding Sundays] posts for the A-to-Z Challenge. For more info, check the link in the sidebar.)
For as long as I can remember, ampersand has been my favorite word. I think it's because I have always enjoyed the stories of things left behind or dropped out of use. How is this relevant?
&, despite not representing a basic sound like the other 26, was the 27th letter of the alphabet. However, the ampersand only received it's moniker through human laziness, as the recitation of the english alphabet ended in "and per se and," and you can see how the laziness slurred into its current name.
The phrase "per se" means "by itself," which means that, when ending the alphabet, one would say "...x, y, z, and [a symbol, which by itself means] and."
Originally, since the scribes of the time wrote in a form of cursive handwriting, the symbol was a slur of the letters e and t, which spell the word "and" in Latin.
I probably like the ampersand a little bit more than the average word nerd. I have begun collecting (and making) art in which the subject is the ampersand. I made a finishing stamp, carved out of a rubber eraser, that is an ampersand.
I think it will always be my favorite word, as I just like the way it's pronounced. It just sounds right.
Tomorrow, we talk about kissing.