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Template:Latin alphabet navbox E is the fifth letter in the Latin alphabet. Its name in English is spelled e (Template:pronEng), plural es or ees (also written E's, Es, e's, etc.).[1] The letter E is the most commonly used letter in the English, French, German and in the Spanish language.[2]


Egyptian hieroglyph
<hiero>A28</hiero> Proto-semiticE-01.png PhoenicianE-01.png File:EtruscanE-01.png Epsilon uc lc.svg Roman E

E is derived from the Greek letter epsilon which is much the same in appearance (Ε, ε) and function. In etymology, the Semitic hê probably first represented a praying or calling human figure (hillul jubilation), and was probably based on a similar Egyptian hieroglyph that was pronounced and used quite differently. In Semitic, the letter represented Template:IPA (and Template:IPA in foreign words), in Greek hê became Εψιλον (Epsilon) with the value Template:IPA. Etruscans and Romans followed this usage. Arising from the Great Vowel Shift, English usage is rather different, namely Template:IPA (derived from Template:IPA in "me" or "bee") whereas other words like "bed" are closer to Latin and other languages in usage.


Like other Latin vowels, E came in a long and a short variety. Originally, the only difference was in length but later on, short e represented Template:IPA. In other languages that use the letter E or e, it represents various other phonetic values, sometimes with accents to indicate contrasts (e ê é è ë Ä“ Ä• Ä› ẽ Ä— ẹ Ä™ ẻ).

Digraphs starting with E are common in many languages to indicate diphthongs and monophthongs, such as EA or EE for Template:IPA or Template:IPA in English, EI for Template:IPA/ in German, or EU for Template:IPA in French or Template:IPA in German.

At the end of a word, E is very often silent in English (silent E), where old noun inflections have been dropped, although even when silent at the end of a word it often causes vowels in the word to be pronounced as diphthongs, conventionally called long vowels (compare as a noun rat and as a verb rate).

Mathematical use[edit]

  • The letter 'e' (lower case) is used to represent the base of the natural logarithm (≈ 2.71828). See e (mathematical constant).
  • The letter 'E' is also used in scientific notation to represent the base 10 exponent. (eg, 3E+2 = 3 × 102 = 3 × 100 = 300)

Scientific use[edit]

  • The upper case letter E is often used to represent energy, most famously in the formula "E = mc2".
  • The uppercase letter E is also used to represent Young's modulus, a material property.
  • The lower case letter e is also used in place of ε  (epsilon) when proper symbols are unavailable. For example: e0, for ε0, the electric constant.

Computer use[edit]

Template:Letter In Unicode the capital E is codepoint U+0045 and the lowercase e is U+0065.

The ASCII code for capital E is 69 and for lowercase e is 101; or in binary 01000101 and 01100101, correspondingly.

The EBCDIC code for capital E is 197 and for lowercase e is 133.

The numeric character references in HTML and XML are "&#69;" and "&#101;" for upper and lower case respectively.

In hexadecimal notation, E, 0xE, 0Eh, #0e, (and similar variants), all represent the number 14.


  1. "E" Merriam-Webster's Third New International Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged (1993)
  2. Cryptography Site

See also[edit]

Template:Commons Similar Latin letters:

Similar non-Latin letters:

Similar phonetic symbols:

Special symbols similar to the letter E: