Will the symbol ‘Ћ’ replace the word ‘the?’

Man! One of the most annoying things about writing stuff all day is the part where you have to type out whole entire words out all the time, amirite?

Luckily, Paul Mathis, an Australian restaurateur has come up with a solution for at least one of our most commonly used words. He suggests that we replace the word “the” with the symbol “?.” He reasons that because we have the ampersand (&) symbol for the word “and,” that we should have one for ‘the,’ since it’s used even more regularly than ‘and.’


Ok, first of all, in order for that to work, we’d have to change all of the keyboards. Where would this ‘?’ even go? And do people have that much of a problem typing two extra characters? I guess it would be helpful with Twitter?

Second of all, wouldn’t it be way more awesome/make more sense to just bring back my all time favorite obsolete letter, thorn?


The letter “thorn” makes the “th”sound. Also, nerds, it is the reason why people think that everyone went around saying “ye” all the time instead of “the” back in the day, as in “Ye Olde Candle Shoppe.” In reality, it was actually “Þe Olde Candle Shoppe” and would just be pronounced as “The Old Candle Shop.” There was a word “ye” in Old English (actually “ge”) but it meant “you,” as in “Come All Ye Faithful.”

Sure, we’d still have to add another letter onto the end, but it would be way cooler. Pretty much all of our sentences would look like lyrics to Scandinavian death metal songs.

This isn’t actually the first time this sort of thing has been proposed. Benjamin Franklin had an idea for a whole phonetic English alphabet, which included the letter “?” to replace “ng.” I once tried to make this a thing (thi?) in high school for about a month, but no one went along (alo?) with me and I eventually forgot about it.

What say you, internet? Can Mathis make ? happen? Or will we all just forget about it in a month?