Including a Comprehensive Condemnation and an Urgent and Immediate Call to Action
No epics about heroism, bravery, or unrequited love will be related here. This piece is not meant as an undying tale to entertain generations to come. Rather, it is a modest exposé — though doubtless one with the utmost importance. This essay’s true purpose is to bring to public attention the undeniable truth that the sixth letter in the Latin alphabet, which shall not be transcribed here, is the sole major shortcoming in the modern English language. Every other issue present — inconsistent spelling, homographs, homophones, regional spelling variations — is workable; each one can be overlooked. But it is not so with this glaring blemish, this unsightly stain on our culture. It is our duty and destiny to expunge it in its entirety.
The sixth letter certainly serves as the originator to all mistakes and miscommunications within the English vernacular. Without this letter in our vocabulary, human civilization undoubtedly would have advanced considerably past the point at which it remains stagnant today. Its very existence has corrupted our minds, making it nearly impossible to create a logical thought or transmit a consequential concept without initially considering using it. I believe it is well past the time to change this — to reclaim our lost souls, snatching them back through history’s long, winding corridors; to break the iron shackles mercilessly chaining our minds to the cold, cruel ground. This endeavor will be long, grueling, and even torturous, but these hardships must be endured. Time will see to it that these hardships are recompensed countless times over.
The unspeakable symbol’s precursor is the Proto-Semitic and Phoenician letter Waw “𐤅”, which made the sound v or w. Its descendents exist in many Semitic abjads (scripts without vowels), such as the Syriac “ܘ”, Hebrew “ו”, and Arabic “و”. It travelled via Phoenician trade routes, appearing in the Greek alphabet as both Upsilon “ϒ” and Digamma “Ϝ”. Upsilon continued evolving, becoming the ancestor to the English letters “U”, “V”, “W”, and “Y”. Digamma, on the other hand, was not used in Ancient Greek, other than as a numeral. However, once the Etruscan alphabet came into contact with the Greek alphabet, Digamma began to be pronounced as w, and it was used in a digraph (two letters which make a single sound when placed together) alongside “H”, representing the same sound as ph. When Romans adopted the alphabet, they used “V” to represent both the vowel u and the consonant w. This meant that Digamma’s sole use was representing ph. The letter “H” in the corresponding digraph was no longer necessary, and consequently dropped — leaving the unmentionable letter on its own with the modern English use. In other words, the symbol only exists in the English alphabet due to recurring coincidences and indiscretions.
The sixth letter in the alphabet is a mockery when compared to all the greatest artworks and achievements throughout human history. The Pyramids at Giza, the Colosseum, the Taj Mahal, the Empire State Building — all look down upon that sorry letter with their glorious arches, domes, and spires high above. Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, Rembrandt van Rijn’s The Night Watch, Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night, Edvard Munch’s The Scream — every shade, tint, and stroke remains unshakably stoic, proud with the knowledge that the wretched glyph is nothing compared to their eternal beauty. The Venus de Milo, Michelangelo’s David, Rodin’s The Thinker, Christ the Redeemer — each holds its meticulously sculpted head high, paying the piteous symbol no heed. Humanity continues, day-to-day, unconcerned with the letter’s insidious chicanery and boundless malevolence.
But therein lies the issue: is our complacency tantamount to capitulation? Have we, in our quest to live on despite the letter’s evils, accidentally accepted it as routine and unremarkable? While I suppose that this should be answered by each reader individually, I shall humbly submit my personal opinion here. I strongly believe that we have, indeed, become negligent towards our duty to resist the beguiling sixth letter — so much so that some would even commit a great sin by including it in their literary works and everyday speech. We must take an unyielding stance against this letter and its transgressions. We must commit to its complete eradication with haste. We must extinguish every occurrence in our lexicon where the letter may have the audacity to appear. No traces can be allowed to remain.
The sixth letter in the alphabet has been allowed to hold sway over humanity well past its due time. It would be indecent and reprehensible to allow this to continue. As such, it is incumbent upon us to decrease its leverage and break its hold on our minds, our souls, and our lives. We should do as I have done here and strive to communicate eloquently without granting the letter any aggrandizement, approbation, attention, or application.