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Getting started on ancient Greek
Getting started on ancient Greek

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9 Local scripts

In the first centuries of the Greek alphabet, from the eighth to the fifth centuries BCE, there was a great diversity of scripts, reflecting a world of independent regions and city-states, under no overall central direction or control. This diversity affected the shapes of individual letters and also the number of letters used in different, local alphabets. The familiar 24-letter alphabet did not emerge fully formed in the eighth century BCE, but was the result of a long process of development, refinement and, eventually, standardisation.