| Egyptian hieroglyph|
| Phoenician |
| Greek |
| Etruscan |
| Roman |
When the Ancient Greeks adopted the alphabet, they had no use for the glottal stop that the letter had denoted in Phoenician and other Semitic languages, so they used the sign for the vowel /a/, and kept its name with a minor change (alpha). In the earliest Greek inscriptions after the Greek Dark Ages, dating to the 8th century BC, the letter rests upon its side, but in the Greek alphabet of later times it generally resembles the modern capital letter, although many local varieties can be distinguished by the shortening of one leg, or by the angle at which the cross line is set.
The Etruscans brought the Greek alphabet to their civilization in the Italian Peninsula and left the letter unchanged. The Romans later adopted the Etruscan alphabet to write Latin, and the resulting letter was preserved in the modern Latin alphabet used to write many languages, including English.
Another Capital A
Modern Roman A
Modern Italic A
Modern Script A
In English, the letter "A" by itself usually denotes the near-open front unrounded vowel (/æ/) as in pad, the open back unrounded vowel (/ɑː/) as in father, or, in concert with a later orthographic vowel, the diphthong /eɪ/ (though the pronunciation varies with the dialect) as in ace and major, due to effects of the great vowel shift.
In most other languages that use the Latin alphabet, the letter A denotes either an open back unrounded vowel (/ɑ/), or an open central unrounded vowel (/a/). In the IPA, variants of the letter A denote various vowels. In X-SAMPA, capital A denotes the open back unrounded vowel and lowercase a denotes the open front unrounded vowel.
A is the third-most common letter in English, and the second-most common in Spanish and French. On average, about 8.2% of letters in English tend to be As, while the number is 6.2% in Spanish and 4% in French.
The EBCDIC code for capital A is 193 and for lowercase a is 129.
The morse code for A is dit dah or a dot and a dash.
af:A als:A ar:A an:A arc:A ast:A az:A zh-min-nan:A bar:A bs:A bg:A ca:A cs:A co:A cy:A da:A de:A et:A el:A eml:A es:A eo:A eu:A fa:A fur:A gan:A gd:A gl:A ko:A hr:A io:A ilo:A ia:A is:A it:A he:A ka:A kw:A sw:A ht:A la:A lv:A lt:A hu:A mzn:A ms:A nah:A ja:A no:A nn:A nrm:A pt:A crh:A ro:A qu:A se:A scn:A simple:A sk:A sl:A szl:A srn:A fi:A sv:A tl:A th:A vi:A tk:A vo:A wuu:A yi:A yo:A zh-yue:A diq:A bat-smg:A zh:A