Ef or Fe (Ф ф; italics: Ф ф) is a Cyrillic letter, commonly representing the voiceless labiodental fricative /f/, like the pronunciation of ⟨f⟩ in "fill, flee, or fall". The Cyrillic letter Ef is romanized as ⟨f⟩.
In the Cyrillic numeral system, Ef has a value of 500.
The Slavic languages have almost no native words containing /f/. This sound did not exist in Proto-Indo-European (PIE). It arose in Greek and Latin from PIE *bʰ (which yielded Slavic /b/). In some instances in Latin, it represented historical th-fronting and derived from Proto-Indo-European *dʰ. In the Germanic languages, the f sound arose from PIE *p, which remained unchanged in Slavic. The letter ф is thus almost exclusively found in words of foreign origin, especially Greek (from φ and sometimes from θ), Latin, French, German, Dutch, English, and Turkic languages
Example borrowings in Russian:
- from Greek: катастрофа, "catastrophe" (from φ); Фёдор, "Theodore" (from θ)
- from Latin: федерация, "federation"; эффект, "effect"
- from German: картофель, "potato" (from Kartoffel); фунт, "pound" (from Pfund)
- from Dutch: флаг, "flag"
The few native Slavic words with this letter (in different languages) are examples of onomatopoeia (like Russian verbs фукать, фыркать etc.) or reflect sporadic pronunciation shifts:
- from пв /pv/: Serbian уфати 'to hope' (cf. Church Slavonic уповати 'to hope')
- from хв /xv/: Macedonian сфати '(he) understands' (cf. Church Slavonic схватити 'to take, to catch'), Russian дрофа 'bustard' (cf. Ukrainian дрохва 'bustard')
- from кв /kv/: Russian филин 'eagle-owl' (cf Ukrainian квилити 'to cry')
- from х /x/: Russian toponym Фили 'Fili' (from хилый 'sickly')
Slavic languages Edit
Ef is the 21st letter of the Bulgarian alphabet; the 22nd letter of the Russian alphabet; the 23rd letter of the Belarusian alphabet; the 25th letter of the Serbian and Ukrainian alphabet; and the 26th letter of the Macedonian alphabet. It represents the consonant /f/ unless it is before a palatalizing vowel, when it represents /fʲ/.
Related letters and other similar characters Edit
Computing codes Edit
|Unicode name||CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER EF||CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER EF|
|UTF-8||208 164||D0 A4||209 132||D1 84|
|Numeric character reference||Ф
|Named character reference||Ф||ф|
|KOI8-R and KOI8-U||230||E6||198||C6|
|Code page 855||171||AB||170||AA|
|Code page 866||148||94||228||E4|