L, a. 1. Having the
general shape of the (capital) letter L;
as, an L beam, or
2. Elevated; -- a symbol for el. as an
abbreviation of elevated in elevated road or
railroad. -- n. An elevated road;
as, to ride on the L. [Colloq., U. S.]
L (ĕl). 1. L is the twelfth
letter of the English alphabet, and a vocal consonant. It is usually
called a semivowel or liquid. Its form and value are
from the Greek, through the Latin, the form of the Greek letter being
from the Phœnician, and the ultimate origin prob. Egyptian.
Etymologically, it is most closely related to r and u;
as in pilgrim, peregrine, couch (fr.
collocare), aubura (fr. LL. alburnus).
At the end of monosyllables containing a single vowel, it is
often doubled, as in fall, full, bell; but not
after digraphs, as in foul, fool, prowl,
growl, foal. In English words, the terminating syllable
le is unaccented, the e is silent, and l is
preceded by a voice glide, as in able, eagle,
pronounced ā"b'l, ē"g'l.
See Guide to Pronunciation, § 241.
2. As a numeral, L stands for fifty in the
English, as in the Latin language.
For 50 the Romans used the Chalcidian chi, ?,
which assumed the less difficult lapidary type, ?, and was then
easily assimilated to L. I. Taylor (The
L (ĕl), n. 1.
An extension at right angles to the length of a main building,
giving to the ground plan a form resembling the letter L; sometimes
less properly applied to a narrower, or lower, extension in the
direction of the length of the main building; a wing. [Written
2. (Mech.) A short right-angled pipe
fitting, used in connecting two pipes at right angles. [Written