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Published by the Folio Society, London in 2006.


The book is in excellent condition bound with burgundy cloth boards with gilt title to spine, as well as gilt and brown decoration to covers. Brown endpapers. The original orange slipcase has some slight shelfwear marks, but is otherwise very good. The binding illustration is based on the letter A in Luca Pacioli's "De Divina Poportiona of 1509. The background is a detail of a Pompeian inscription, from a rubbing made by the author.


This book gives a brief history of the alphabet's development, tracing the path of change in simple, direct prose, illustrated with numerous examples of symbols, engravings and script. From the rebus effect to minuscules, he makes clear these first steps in the sometimes hazy world of philology, introducing us along the way to a cast that varies from free-booting Phoenicians, Renaissance bibliophiles and modern-day texting teenagers. An entertaining guide to explaining why A stands for Ox and E for Hey.

A is for Ox by Lyn Davies

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