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A, the first letter of the English and most other alphabets, is frequently used as an abbreviation, (q.v.) and also in the marks of schedules or papers, as schedule A, B, C, &c. Among the Romans this letter was used in criminal trials. The judges were furnished with small tables covered with wax, and each one inscribed on it the initial letter of his vote; A, when he voted to absolve the party on trial; C, when he was for condemnation; and N L, (non liquet) when the matter did not appear clearly, and be desired a new argument.

References in classic literature ?
Windigate, of the Alpha, and by him to his club, of which Mr.
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority is the nation's oldest African-American sorority, founded in 1908 on the campus of Howard University.
If alpha didn't have the value it has, Earth as we know it wouldn't exist," he adds.
Radon gas, a breakdown product of uranium that seeps naturally from the ground, accounts for most of the alpha particles that bombard people.
1: allelic association and a unique haplotype associated with alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency.
Wright, found evidence suggesting that low levels of alpha particles cause the chromosomes of laboratory-grown cells to become unstable.