03 June 2011

Glyph cunning

Zorro truly was a cunning old fox. He carefully chose his name so he could leave his mark – that “Z” – with three swift strokes of his witty rapier. Imagine if he’d called himself Burro (the Donkey) – it would have been a nightmare trying to carve a “B” with a sword, and the holes in the B would have fallen out of the enemy’s tunic (or torso), totally ruining the effect.

What if California had been run by the French or Norwegians? Renard or Rev (the respective words for “fox”) also start with a pretty unswashable letter. And don’t get me started on Chinese. “Stand still a moment while I cut 狐 in your shirt.”