Iota

Iota (/ˈtə/; uppercase Ι, lowercase ι; Greek: ιώτα) is the ninth letter of the Greek alphabet. It was derived from the Phoenician letter Yodh.[1] Letters that arose from this letter include the Latin I and J, the Cyrillic І (І, і), Yi (Ї, ї), and Je (Ј, ј), and iotated letters (e.g. Yu (Ю, ю)).

In the system of Greek numerals, iota has a value of 10.[2]

Iota represents the sound [i]. In ancient Greek, it occurred in both long [iː] and short [i] versions, but this distinction was lost in Koine Greek.[3]

Iota participated as the second element in falling diphthongs, with both long and short vowels as the first element. Where the first element was long, the iota was lost in pronunciation at an early date, and was written in polytonic orthography as iota subscript, in other words as a very small ι under the main vowel. Examples include ᾼ ᾳ ῌ ῃ ῼ ῳ. The former diphthongs became digraphs for simple vowels in Koine Greek.[3]

The word is used in a common English phrase, "not one iota", meaning "not the slightest amount", in reference to a phrase in the New Testament (Matthew 5:18): "until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, (King James Version: '[not] one jot or one tittle') will pass from the Law until all is accomplished". (Mt 5:18)[4] This refers to iota, the smallest letter, or possibly Yodh, י, the smallest letter in the Hebrew alphabet.

The word 'jot' (or iot) derives from iota.[5]

The German, Portuguese, and Spanish name for the letter J (Jot / jota) is derived from iota.

Symbol

  • In some programming languages (e.g., A+, APL, C++, Go[6]), iota (either as the lowercase symbol or the identifier iota) is used to represent and generate an array of consecutive integers. For example, in APL ⍳4 gives 1 2 3 4.
  • The lowercase iota symbol is sometimes used to write the imaginary unit, but more often Roman i or j is used.
  • In mathematics, the inclusion map of one space into another is sometimes denoted by the lowercase iota.
  • In logic, the lowercase iota denotes the definite descriptor.
  • The lowercase iota symbol has Unicode code point U+03B9 and the uppercase U+0399.

Character encodings

CharacterΙι
Unicode nameGREEK CAPITAL LETTER IOTAGREEK SMALL LETTER IOTAMODIFIER LETTER SMALL IOTATURNED GREEK SMALL LETTER IOTA
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode921U+0399953U+03B97589U+1DA58489U+2129
UTF-8206 153CE 99206 185CE B9225 182 165E1 B6 A5226 132 169E2 84 A9
Numeric character referenceΙΙιιᶥᶥ℩℩
Named character referenceΙι
DOS Greek13688160A0
DOS Greek-2173AD227E3
Windows 1253201C9233E9
TeX\iota
Characterͺͅ
Unicode nameGREEK YPOGEGRAMMENICOMBINING GREEK YPOGEGRAMMENIGREEK PROSGEGRAMMENI
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode890U+037A837U+03458126U+1FBE
UTF-8205 186CD BA205 133CD 85225 190 190E1 BE BE
Numeric character referenceͺͺͅͅιι
  • Coptic Iaude
Character
Unicode nameCOPTIC CAPITAL LETTER IAUDECOPTIC SMALL LETTER IAUDE
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode11410U+2C9211411U+2C93
UTF-8226 178 146E2 B2 92226 178 147E2 B2 93
Numeric character referenceⲒⲒⲓⲓ
  • Latin Iota
CharacterƖɩ
Unicode nameLATIN CAPITAL LETTER IOTALATIN SMALL LETTER IOTA
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode406U+0196617U+0269
UTF-8198 150C6 96201 169C9 A9
Numeric character referenceƖƖɩɩ
  • Cyrillic Iota
Character
Unicode nameCYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER IOTACYRILLIC SMALL LETTER IOTA
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode42566U+A64642567U+A647
UTF-8234 153 134EA 99 86234 153 135EA 99 87
Numeric character referenceꙆꙆꙇꙇ
  • Technical Iota
Character
Unicode nameAPL FUNCTIONAL SYMBOL IOTAAPL FUNCTIONAL SYMBOL IOTA UNDERBAR
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode9075U+23739080U+2378
UTF-8226 141 179E2 8D B3226 141 184E2 8D B8
Numeric character reference⍳⍳⍸⍸
  • Mathematical Iota
Character𝚰𝛊𝛪𝜄𝜤𝜾
Unicode nameMATHEMATICAL BOLD
CAPITAL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL BOLD
SMALL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL ITALIC
CAPITAL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL ITALIC
SMALL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL BOLD ITALIC
CAPITAL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL BOLD ITALIC
SMALL IOTA
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode120496U+1D6B0120522U+1D6CA120554U+1D6EA120580U+1D704120612U+1D724120638U+1D73E
UTF-8240 157 154 176F0 9D 9A B0240 157 155 138F0 9D 9B 8A240 157 155 170F0 9D 9B AA240 157 156 132F0 9D 9C 84240 157 156 164F0 9D 9C A4240 157 156 190F0 9D 9C BE
UTF-1655349 57008D835 DEB055349 57034D835 DECA55349 57066D835 DEEA55349 57092D835 DF0455349 57124D835 DF2455349 57150D835 DF3E
Numeric character reference𝚰𝚰𝛊𝛊𝛪𝛪𝜄𝜄𝜤𝜤𝜾𝜾
Character𝝞𝝸𝞘𝞲
Unicode nameMATHEMATICAL SANS-SERIF
BOLD CAPITAL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL SANS-SERIF
BOLD SMALL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL SANS-SERIF
BOLD ITALIC CAPITAL IOTA
MATHEMATICAL SANS-SERIF
BOLD ITALIC SMALL IOTA
Encodingsdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhexdecimalhex
Unicode120670U+1D75E120696U+1D778120728U+1D798120754U+1D7B2
UTF-8240 157 157 158F0 9D 9D 9E240 157 157 184F0 9D 9D B8240 157 158 152F0 9D 9E 98240 157 158 178F0 9D 9E B2
UTF-1655349 57182D835 DF5E55349 57208D835 DF7855349 57240D835 DF9855349 57266D835 DFB2
Numeric character reference𝝞𝝞𝝸𝝸𝞘𝞘𝞲𝞲

These characters are used only as mathematical symbols. Stylized Greek text should be encoded using the normal Greek letters, with markup and formatting to indicate text style.

References

  1. Victor Parker, A History of Greece, 1300 to 30 BC, (John Wiley & Sons, 2014), 67.
  2. "Greek numbers". History.mcs.st-and.ac.uk. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  3. see Koine Greek phonology
  4. Ammer, Christine (1997). The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. p. 445.
  5. "Jot | Define Jot at Dictionary.com". Dictionary.reference.com. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  6. "The Go Programming Language Specification". The Go Authors. November 18, 2016. Retrieved 2017-08-08.
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