Character can be traced back to the Greek χαράσσειν meaning “to sharpen, cut in furrows, or engrave.”
This word gave the Greeks χαρακτήρ, a noun meaning “mark, distinctive quality” (a meaning that was shared by the Latin character).
When English adopted the word in the 14th century this “a distinctive differentiating mark” was among the earliest meanings of the word, along with “a conventionalized graphic device placed on an object as an indication of ownership, origin, or relationship,” a definition that includes the letters of the alphabet which make up the word itself.
You can also read: The word ‘bibliophile’
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