Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Epise’mon,

 Epiph’any.Ep’isode (3 syl.) 
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E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Epise’mon,
 
in Greek numerals, is a sign standing for a numeral. Thus, εpiiotasigmaetamuonu betaalphaυ, generally called Fau, Epismon, stands for 6, and iota-episemon for 16. There are two other symbols—viz. koppa for 90, and sampi [san-pi] for 900. The reason is this: The Greek letters were used for numerals, and were ranged in three columns of nine figures each; but 24 letters will not divide by 9, so the 3 symbols, epismon, koppa, and sampi were added to make up 3 x 9. Col. 1, from 1 to 20; col. 2, from 20 to 100; col. 3, from 100 to 1,000.   1
        Bau and Fau are identical, the B or F being the dijamma. Thus oiotanuozeta (wine) was pronounced Foinos, called in Latin Vinum, and omegaonu (an egg) was pronounced Ofon, in Latin Ovum.
   A dash under a letter multiplied it a hundredfold. Thus, alpha = 1, but alpha = 1000. For intermediate figures between full tens a mark was made above the unit. Thus alpha (iota) = 10; but alpha = 10 + 1 = 11, iotabeta = 10 + 2 = 12; iotagamma = 10 + 3 = 13, and so on.   2
 


 Epiph’any.Ep’isode (3 syl.) 

 
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