Let’s start with the word tittle-tattle, i m sorry is a reasonably well known English expression that means to host a casual conversation about other people, commonly involving details that are not confirmed as true. In various other words: idle gossip. Tattle way to to let out tricks to who in authority, frequently to reason trouble. So, we have the right to infer that tittle-tattle is come talk about other people’s secrets behind their backs. Currently we room not walking to execute that but we will expose some secrets around typography.

You are watching: What is the dot on top of the letter "i" called?


So why is there a dot over the small letter i and j?

This diacritical mark is also called a tittle and also it exist to assist the leader easily distinguish them from other letterforms. In this instance, the word tittle finds that is etymology indigenous Hebrew and refers come the tiny overhang in a pen stroke that distinguishes one letter from another very similar letter.


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Compare the Hebrew resh character listed below (on the left) which is made through one smooth stroke. The daleth character (in the middle) is made v two strokes of the pen. Note the separating overhang ~ above the daleth (on the right) at the roof that the letter. There’s our tittle.


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The dog ear

Another quite typographic hatchet is ear or dog ear. This refers to the tiny stroke that extends native the upper-right side of the key on a lowercase g and, sometimes, the lowercase r. The figure of the dog ear depends on the typeface, but its enhancement creates a friendly open character as well as providing far better recognition once scanning text.


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Upper and also lowercase

Now we store referring to the ax lowercase. This derives from the time when print was developed using a hot metal press. Each character was kept in boxes called cases, v the majuscule (capital letters) in the upper case and the smaller sized minuscule letter in the lower situation – therefore lowercase and also uppercase.

There are countless other typographic terms favor aperture, counter, eye and also terminal i m sorry you deserve to learn much more about by visiting our typographic glossary.


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A parting gift

We hope the scratched your typographical itch. We will leave friend with an additional of ours favourite typographic term, the Crotch: an acute, within angle where two strokes meet.


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Hopefully you i will not ~ look therefore horrified the following time girlfriend hear your designer stating that they’ve been looking a crotches every day you.

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