() is the second letter of the English alphabet. (See Guide to Pronunciation, // 196, 220.) It is etymologically related to p, v, f, w and m , letters representing sounds having a close organic affinity to its own sound; as in Eng. bursar and purser; Eng. bear and Lat. ferre; Eng. silver and Ger. silber; Lat. cubitum and It. gomito; Eng. seven, Anglo-Saxon seofon, Ger. sieben, Lat. septem, Gr.epta`, Sanskrit saptan. The form of letter is Roman, from Greek (Beta), of Semitic origin. The small b was formed by gradual change from the capital B.