B

B is the second letter in the Latin alphabet. Its name in English is spelled bee or occasionally be (pronEng|biː), plural bees. ["B" "Oxford English Dictionary," 2nd edition (1989); "Merriam-Webster's Third New International Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged" (1993); "bee," op. cit.]

History

The letter B might have started as a pictogram of the floorplan of a house in Egyptian hieroglyphs or the Proto-Sinaitic alphabet. By 1050 BC, the Phoenician alphabet's letter had a linear form that served as the beth.

Typography

The modern lowercase letter "b" derives from later Roman times, when scribes began omitting the upper loop of the capital.

The letter B is often confused with the visually similar German ß which stands for "ss".

Usage

In English and most other languages that use the Latin alphabet, the letter b denotes the voiced bilabial plosive (IPAEng|b), as in "bib". In English it is sometimes silent, as in "debt" or "comb" (however the 'b' in 'comb' was actually pronounced at one time). In Estonian, Icelandic, and in Chinese transcription, B is not voiced, but is still contrasted to P, which is geminated IPA|/pp/ in Estonian and aspirated IPA|/pʰ/ in Chinese and Icelandic. In Fijian B is prenasalized IPA2|mb, whereas in Zulu and Xhosa it is implosive IPA2|ɓ, in contrast to the digraph Bh which represents IPA2|b.

Finnish uses the letter "b" only for loanwords.

In the and X-SAMPA, letter IPA|/b/ denotes the voiced bilabial plosive. Variants of the letter b denote related bilabial consonants, like the voiced bilabial implosive and the bilabial trill. In X-SAMPA, capital B denotes the voiced bilabial fricative.

B is also a musical note.

Codes for computing

Letter
NATO=Bravo
Morse=–···
Character=B2
Braille=⠃
In Unicode the capital B is codepoint U+0042 and the lower case b is U+0062.

The ASCII code for capital B is 66 and for lowercase b is 98; or in binary 01000010 and 01100010, correspondingly.

The EBCDIC code for capital B is 194 and for lowercase b is 130.

The numeric character references in HTML and XML are"B" and "b" for upper and lower caserespectively.

References

See also

*В, в : Ve (Cyrillic)
*Б, б: Be (Cyrillic)
*The Semitic letter Bet
*Unicode|Ɓ
*B postcode area (United Kingdom)

af:B
als:B
ar:B
arc:B
ast:B
az:B
zh-min-nan:B
bs:B
ca:B
cs:B
co:B
cy:B
da:B
de:B
dv:B
et:B
el:B
es:B
eo:B
eu:B
fa:B
fur:B
gan:B
gd:B
gl:B
ko:B
hr:B
io:B
ilo:B
is:B
it:B
he:B
ka:B
kw:B
sw:B
ht:B
la:B
lv:B
lb:B
lt:B
hu:B
mzn:B
ms:B
nah:B
ja:B
no:B
nn:B
nrm:B
pl:B
pt:B
crh:B
ro:B
qu:B
se:B
scn:B
simple:B
sk:B
sl:B
szl:B
fi:B
sv:B
tl:B
th:B
vi:B
tk:B
vo:B
wuu:B
yo:B
zh-yue:B
bat-smg:B
zh:B


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