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Famous Like Me > Actor > G > Ángel García

Profile of Ángel García on Famous Like Me

Name: Ángel García  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 13th September 1976
Place of Birth: Alicante, Spain
Profession: Actor
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
The "roman" ampersand on the left is stylised, but the "italic" one on the right is clearly similar to 'et'.

An ampersand (&) is a logogram representing the word logical conjunction "and." The symbol is a ligature of the letters in et, which is Latin for "and." Its origin is apparent in the second example in the image to the right; the first example, now more common, is a later development. It was traditionally regarded as the last character of the English alphabet.

The name derives from the phrase “and per se and,” meaning “the symbol &, by itself, represents ‘and.’” The Scottish English name for the ampersand is epershand, derived from "et per se" with the same meaning.


Punctuation marks

apostrophe ( ' ) ( )
brackets ( ( ) ) ( [ ] ) ( { } ) ( 〈 〉 )
colon ( : )
comma ( , )
dashes ( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
ellipsis ( ) ( ... )
exclamation mark ( ! )
full stop/period ( . )
hyphen ( - ) ( )
interrobang ( )
question mark ( ? )
quotation marks ( ‘ ’ ) ( “ ” )
semicolon ( ; )
slash/solidus ( / )
space (   ) and interpunct ( · )

Other typographer's marks

ampersand ( & )
asterisk ( * ) and asterism ( )
at ( @ )
backslash ( )
bullet ( , more )
dagger ( † ‡ )
degrees ( ° )
number sign ( # )
prime ( )
tilde ( ~ )
underscore ( _ )
vertical bar/pipe ( | )

The ampersand symbol has been found on ancient Roman sources dating to the first century CE. During this period the symbol was a boxy-looking ligature of the capital letters E T. Over time the figure became more curved and flowing, until it came to resemble something like the figure above on the right, often called the "italic" ampersand.

By the eighth century AD, Western calligraphy was well developed, particularly in a form called Carolingian minuscule. The calligraphers made extensive use of the ampersand because the condensation of a word into a single character made their work easier. During this time the even more condensed ampersand, shown above on the left, was developed. It is often called the "roman" ampersand.

After the advent of printing in Europe in 1455, printers made extensive use of both the italic and roman ampersands. Every new typeface and font has included its own style of &. Since the ampersand's roots go back to Roman times, many languages that use a variation of the Latin alphabet make use of it.

Historically, & was regarded as the 27th letter of the English alphabet. Until recent times the alphabets used by children terminated not with Z but with & or related typographic symbols. George Eliot refers to this when she has Jacob Storey say, "He thought it (Z) had only been put to finish off th' alphabet like; though ampusand would ha' done as well, for what he could see."


Although common in handwriting before typewriters came into widespread use, the ampersand has lost popularity in recent years, and it has become standard in most contexts to write out the word "and."

The main surviving use of the ampersand is in the formal names of businesses (especially firms and partnerships, particularly law firms, architectural firms, and stockbroker firms (the names of these are also unique in that they nearly always omit the serial comma). A common explanation as to why the plus sign is not used instead is that a partnership is a relationship, and therefore more than simply adding one person with another.

The ampersand is also often used when addressing an envelope to a couple: "Mr. & Mrs. Jones," or "John & Mary."

The ampersand is also used for titles, such as Harry & Tonto, as well, and in some other proper names. In these cases, & is interchangeable with the word and; the distinction between them is mostly aesthetic. However, in film credits for story, screenplay, etc., & indicates a closer collaboration than and; in screenplays, for example, two authors joined with & collaborated on the script, while two authors joined with and wrote the script at different times and may not have consulted each other at all.

The conventional ampersand, as shown in the image at the top of this page, on the left, can be easily drawn by first making the cross stroke a bit farther to the right than where a common letter begins, shifting the pen to the center of this stroke, and then following the loop around.

In everyday handwriting, the ampersand is sometimes simplified to a curvy E superimposed by a vertical line, like a $ sign. Sometimes it is nothing more than a + (plus sign) with a loop; the loop is the remnant of a lowercase e.

The phrase et cetera ("and so forth") can be abbreviated &c. This is because the ampersand originally stood for the Latin et.

The ampersand represents a vowel in the orthography for the Marshallese language.


In the twentieth century, following the development of formal logic, the ampersand became the most commonly used logical notation for the sentential connective AND. This usage was adopted by computer programmers: see below.

The ampersand corresponds to Unicode code point and ASCII character 38, or hexadecimal 0x0026. Largly depending on the locale's keyboard layout, the symbol normally shares space with the "6" or "7" key.

In some computer programming languages, the & sign is often used to indicate logical AND. Many computer languages with syntax derived from C differentiate between:

  • && for logical AND
  • & for bitwise AND

In the C/C++ programming languages, the & symbol, in addition to logical and bitwise AND described above, is used at the front of a variable name to refer to the address in memory of that variable. (This is called "referencing".) Also, in C++, if a formal parameter of a function is preceded by the & symbol then the parameter is passed as a reference.

In the BASIC programming language the & is used in two ways. It is often used to indicate a variable is of type long, or 32 bits in length. It is also used between two strings (variables or constants) to concatenate them.

When found at the end of a Unix shell command, the ampersand indicates that the indicated command is to be processed in the background.

In SGML, XML, and HTML, the ampersand is used to introduce an SGML entity. The HTML encoding for the ampersand character is the entity '&'. The XML entity is '&'.


  • "The Ampersand", an article written for Adobe Systems by Max Caflisch

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Ángel García