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Millions of people finish their messages with an X, which means ‘kiss’ in English. Learn how X came to mean ‘kiss’ in today’s episode!
पत्राच्या किंवा मेसेजच्या शेवटी 'x'का लिहितात?

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Why does X mean ‘kiss’ in English?

Millions of people finish their messages with an X, which means ‘kiss’ in English. Learn how X came to mean ‘kiss’ in today’s episode!
अनेक लोक पत्राच्या शेवटी X लिहितात ज्याचा अर्थ होतो 'kisses'. 'X' चा असा वापर कधीपासून सुरु झाला?

Before you listen!

Consider the following questions:

- How long have people been speaking your native language?
- Does your language ‘borrow’ words or symbols from other languages? What are they?

รับฟังเสียงพร้อมทำแบบฝีกหัด

แสดงเนื้อหาบทบันทึกเสียง ซ่อนเนื้อหาบทบันทึกเสียง

Tejali
नमस्कार! ऐकलंत का? Listen Here मध्ये तुमचं स्वागत! मी तेजाली...

Tom
And I’m Tom! Hi everybody

Tejali
अनेकदा SMSच्या, पत्रांच्या शेवटी ‘X’ लिहिलेलं आपण पाहतो; त्याचा अर्थ होतो kisses. आपल्याकडे याचा वापर गेल्या दशकभरापासून सुरू झालाय, पण पाश्चात्य देशांत प्रियजनांना पत्र लिहीण्यासाठी शेवटी X लिहून सही करणं सामान्य आहे.  ‘X’ चा असा वापर का आणि कधीपासून सुरू झाला ते आजच्या भागात ऐकणार आहोत. Do you put Xs on the end of your message, Tom?

Tom
I do, actually, yes, but only with my mother!

Tejali
चला, बीबीसी रेडिओ 4च्याWord of Mouth मधला एक छोटासा भाग ऐकू. पत्रात ‘X’ लिहायची पध्दत कधीपासून सुरू झाली?

Woman
Well, we’ve been adding Xs, for kisses, at the bottom of our letters, since at least 1763, so the very first one we know of had seven Xs!

Tom
She said ‘since at least 1763’!

Tejali
Wow! More than 250 years ago! And she said there were seven Xs!

Tom
That’s right! ‘X’ starts with a vowel sound. Often, words which begin with vowel sounds can take the last sound of the word which comes before. ‘Seven Xs’, then, is pronounced ‘seveNexes’. I could also say ‘seveNever’. Listen again for ‘seveNexes’. Which verb and preposition come before?
      
Woman

Well, we’ve been adding Xs, for kisses, at the bottom of our letters, since at least 1763, so the very first one we know of had seven Xs!

Tom
She said ‘the very first one we know of’.

Tejali
Know of 
एखादी गोष्ट अस्तित्त्वात आहे, पण तिच्याबद्दल तपशिलात माहिती नाही; अशा वेळी ‘know of’ वापर होतो. 

Tom

So, we know of a piece of evidence – this is the old letter which contains Xs.

Tejali
Hmm… पण know aboutचा अर्थ वेगळा आहे. Know aboutचा अर्थ एखाद्या गोष्टीची तुम्हाला तपशिलात माहिती आहे.

Tom
We know of the letter, but we still don’t understand our main question! We need to know about X. Why does X mean kiss in English?

Tejali
Let's listen to rest of the clip for the answer!
‘X’चा उगम कुठून झाला? आणि त्याचा नक्की उच्चार कसा करायचा, चला ऐकूया  ?    
      
Woman
We get X from the Roman alphabet, which got it from the Greek alphabet, pronounced ‘kss’. And the romans certainly found it good for…

Man
Oh! That’s nearly a kiss, isn’t it?!

Woman
Yeah, it is, isn’t it? I think a penny’s just dropped there.

Tom
So, X comes from the Roman alphabet! And they pronounced it ‘kss’.

Tejali
Exactly! The Roman alphabet म्हणजे रोमन अक्षरं. पुन्हा ऐकूया. नीट ऐका.
 
Woman
We get X from the Roman alphabet, which got it from the Greek alphabet pronounced ‘kss’. And the Romans certainly found it good for…

Man
Oh! That’s nearly a kiss, isn’t it?!

Woman
Yeah, it is, isn’t it?

Tejali
त्यांनी tag questions वापरले. खात्री करून घेण्यासाठी tag question प्रश्नाच्या शेवटी वापरतात.

Tom
So, after ‘it is’, we could say ‘isn’t it’.

Tejali
बरोब्बर. म्हणजे दोन्ही प्रश्नांवर जोर आला, दुसऱ्या प्रश्नामुळे, समोरच्याच्या प्रतिसादाची अपेक्षा आहे, हे ही व्यक्त झालं.

Tom
That’s right! Repeat after me. We’ll begin with the stressed question. Ready?

isn’t it?

it is, isn’t it?

Yeah, it is, isn’t it?

Tejali
आता दोघांनीही tag questions वापरून त्यांना किती माहिती आहे ते सांगितलं. हे सांगताना त्यांनी कुठला वाक्प्रचार वापरला?     

Man
Oh! That’s nearly a kiss, isn’t it?!

Woman
Yeah, it is, isn’t it? I think a penny’s just dropped there.

Tom
They used the idiom ‘the penny’s dropped’.

Tejali
‘The penny has dropped’, याचा अर्थ होतो, शेवटी आपल्याला काहीतरी समजलंच !

Tom
Hopefully, the penny’s dropped for you, too, and they now know about X, and why it means kiss in English. I think this is a good time to finish, isn’t it?

Tejali
That’s right! Thanks for joining us on this week’s Listen here!See you again!

Tom
See you next week everybody! And I’m signing off with an X!

Language features

Listen to today’s clip in full here.

Source: Word of Mouth

Sound linking

Cosonant to vowel linking is when the first word ends with a consonant sound and the second word begins with a vowel sound. 

‘SEVen EXes’ becomes ‘seveNEXes’. ‘SEVen EVer’ becomes ‘seveNEVer’.

Tag questions

Tag questions come at the end of a clause. We use them to check our understanding of something, or ask for confirmation. The auxiliary verb in the tag questions matches that of the clause.
When the first clause is positive, the tag question is negative.

You’re an English teacher, aren’t you?

If the first clause is negative, the question is positive.

School isn’t open next week, is it?

If the first clause does not contain an auxiliary verb, we need to add one to the second clause.

You work in the bank, don’t you?

The penny has dropped

This is an idiomatic expression we use when we have finally learned or realised something. It implies a period of waiting has taken place. The expression is flexible – we can use it in different tenses.

I studied Spanish grammar for six months before the penny dropped! Now I can speak easily and fluently.

Thanks for explaining our homework! The penny has finally dropped and I won’t need any more help.

Why does X mean ‘kiss’ in English?

3 Questions

Choose the correct answer.
योग्य उत्तर निवडा .

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x / y

Join us for our next episode of Listen Here when we will learn more useful language and practise your listening skills.
Listen Hereचे पुढचा भाग नक्की बघा. तुम्ही आणखी उपयुक्त शब्द शिकाल आणि तुमच्या श्रवण कौशल्याचा सरावही होईल अशा विषयावर बोलणार आहोत.

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Session Vocabulary

  • Xs
    Xचं अनेकवचन

    alphabet
    बाराखडी 

    know of
    जास्त माहिती नसणे 

    know about
    इत्यंभूत माहिती असणे 

    the penny has dropped
    विषयातलं समजणे