Yogh

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The letter yogh (Ȝ ȝ; Middle English: yoȝ), was used in Middle English and Middle Scots, representing y (/j/) and various velar phonemes. It was derived from the Old English form of the letter g.

In Middle English writing, tailed z came to be indistinguishable from yogh. In Middle Scots the character yogh representing the sound /j/ came to be confused with a cursive z and the early Scots printers often used z, when yogh was not available in their fonts. Consequently some Lowland Scots words have a z in place of a yogh.

Yogh is shaped like the Arabic numeral three (3), which is sometimes substituted for the character in online reference works. There is some confusion about the letter in the literature, as the English language was far from standardised at the time. The upper and lower case letters (Ȝ,ȝ) are represented in Unicode by code points U+021C and U+021D respectively. In HTML, they are represented by Ȝ and ȝ.

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Pronunciation

Yogh is pronounced either UK: /ˈjɒɡ/, /ˈjɒx/, with a short o,[1] or US: /ˈjoʊɡ/, /ˈjoʊk/, /ˈjoʊx/, with a long o.[2] It stood for /ɡ/ and its various allophones—including [ɡ] and the voiced velar fricative [ɣ]—as well as the phoneme /j/ (‹y› in modern English spelling).

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