and per se and
For today's post, one of my favorite words: ampersand. Today I read a great little article on the ampersand and its origin. I knew "ampersand" came from "and per se and," but I didn't know why. Below, an excerpt.
The word “ampersand” came many years later when “&” was actually part of the English alphabet. In the early 1800s, school children reciting their ABCs concluded the alphabet with the &. It would have been confusing to say “X, Y, Z, and.” Rather, the students said, “and per se and.” “Per se” means “by itself,” so the students were essentially saying, “X, Y, Z, and by itself and.” Over time, “and per se and” was slurred together into the word we use today: ampersand.
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