Alpha Beta: How 26 Letters Shaped the Western World

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Wiley, Mar 25, 2002 - History - 320 pages
1 Review
Praise for Alpha Beta
"This book comes at the perfect moment as we rediscover the importance in early reading of cracking the alphabetic code. The story of how that code came into being is a fascinating one, and Man is the ideal writer to tell it." Times Educational Supplement

"A richly absorbing exploration, from B.C. to PCs, of the evolution of the most fundamental characters of our cultural history, the alphabet we so much take for granted. John Man writes with a compellingly restless curiosity and immediacy. The ever surprising, exotically detailed narrative in his informative book makes it as undryly enjoyable as a successful archaelogical dig of one of Alan Moorehead s colorful histories of African exploration." David Grambs, author of The Describer s Dictionary and The Endangered English Dictionary

"Text that is crisp, taut, and as clear as a bell.... A fascinating story with many a beguiling subplot along the way." New Scientist

"Letter perfect the best histories and mysteries of our ABC s!" Jeff McQuain, author of Never Enough Words and Power Language

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Review: Alpha Beta: How 26 Letters Shaped the Western World

User Review  - Christina - Goodreads

Very approachable and informative. Read full review

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About the author (2002)

JOHN MAN is a historian and travel writer with a special interest in Mongolia. His most recent books are Gobi: Tracking the Desert and The Atlas of the Year 1000. He also wrote The Waorani: Jungle Nomads of Ecuador and The Atlas of D-Day. He lives with his wife and family in London.

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