Mind control in days of yore

Hallie O'Donovan hallieod at indigo.ie
Sun May 18 05:13:30 EDT 2003


>Anna:
>>	I'm not quite sure how old it is, but quite old is my guess. In
>>  English we sometimes call "X" a criss cross which is derived I think from
>>  Christ-cross. I wouldn't be surprised if the idea of representing Christ
>>  with a simple cross dated back to before the word "cross" entered the
>>  vocabulary of these shores... It seems like a fairly obvious step to me...
>>  But what do I know? And after staying up too late last night it is going
>>  to take a Very Long Time before I can face immersing myself in the tiny
>>  print of my OED in the hopes of finding out...
>
>It just occurred to me that the cross might also be there to 
>represent the first letter of 'Christ', which is indeed X (chi?) in 
>Greek. The crossiness of it does seem rather fortuitous, though (if 
>not crucial), and can't have hurt in gaining the abbreviation wider 
>circulation.

Yeah, it's from chi for Kristos, rather than the cross.

On a similar note, I remember being very confused when I was taken to 
a cemetary as a child, by all the (as I thought) dollar signs on many 
of the tombstones.  I thought it surprising there were so many 
millionaires buried there (not to say crass of them to boast about 
it).

Hallie.
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