Mono-Gram : One-Letter

If you judge by Pinterest, monogramming is very popular. You can monogram anything and everything.  It truly is a reflection of the person.  Are the monograms ornate or minimalistic? Maybe you even think it is quite egotistical to monogram and would never wear one.

 When you think about monogramming, how many letters do you think of – three – two, maybe even four with families of today?  Well, technically “mono” is a Greek word in its origin (“monos”) and means “one” or “single” and yet it has come to mean any number of initials. One definition I saw even defined “monogram” as two or more letters.  Well, they clearly forgot the origin of the word!

 Machine embroidery stitched by Colleen Bell and designed by Sonia Showalter

Machine embroidery stitched by Colleen Bell and designed by Sonia Showalter

You would think that the “grams” part of the word had to do with math or science and was a weight of measure, but not when it is combined with the word “mono” and has a Greek origin too. The Online Etymology Dictionary (www.etymonline.com) sets us straight by showing us that it comes from “gramma,” which means “letters” or “written,” like learning your grammar.  Now I know that is going too far for some of you.

Whatever your opinion is of monograms, they have been with us for many years, dating back to the ancient of days, and they are here to stay at least for a little while.