X is For XYZ Affair….

XYZ Affair….
A to Z Blog Challenge is fast approaching to the finishing line. Just three more letters to go to find the finishing line. 

Today is the turn of the 24th letter in the Alphabet, that is: “X”
Pic. Credit: Wikipedia
The beginning or origin of this letter is very interesting.  The World Encyclopedia says, and I quote:  “It came from a word used by the Semites, who once lived in Syria and Palestine.  They named it samekh,  their word for fish, and adapted an Egyptian hieroglyphic, or picture symbolized to represent  fish.  The Greeks later took the symbol into their alphabet, and used the letter to represent the sound of  ch.  The Romans used the letter to represent the same sound, but changed its shape slightly.”

“It is considered as the 23rd letter most frequently used letter in books, newspapers and other printed material in English. This letter is used alone or in combination with other letters.  Often stands for the word “Christ” as in “Xmas.   X is also the Roman numeral for ten.  Also it is used in physical science and in mathematics to denote an unknown quantity or a quantity that was at first unknown, as in X ray.  In arithmetic problems, x is the sign of multiplication.  And in describing measurements, x represents the word by, as in 9’x12’; or nine by twelve feet.”

Now come to the XYZ Affair: 

This was the name given to a controversial exchange of diplomatic proposals between France and the United States in 1797.  The relationship between two nations strained and France put forward outrageous demands.  These were made by three French agents and later they were known as X Y and Z.   The fighting between two countries began at sea though war was never declared.  It all started while France was at war with Great Britain.  The British had captured many French ships in the war.  And France has to depend on American ships to carry on the trade.  But the French became enraged at the Americans in 1796, when the U.S. British Jay Treaty took effect and the treaty failed to guarantee American rights to trade with France and they began to seize American ships and cargoes.  The friction continued…. Read more about that here at this link. XYZ Affair


World Book

Philip V Ariel Founder and CEO at Philipscom

A freelance writer, editor and a blogger from Kerala. Now based at Secunderabad, Telangana, India. Can reach at: pvariel(@)Gmail [.] Com
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