D: The Letter of Dignity, Durability and Darkness

Discerning difficulties, dangers and distances is the test of a great general.

The Art of War Suntzu

The first use of the letter D was a picture symbol of a door in Egyptian hieroglyphics. The sign became known as daleth in the Semitic languages until the Greeks changed it to a triangle and renamed it Delta in deference to its shape

Like the baleful low frequency tones of the letter B, the D takes on a similar malevolence because of its relationship with the devil, death and destruction, deviant, demons, doomsday, danger, destroy, demise, damnation, and Diana, goddess of the hunt.

But there is a duality to this sharply spoken letter, for in the Cabala – the mystical collection of work that underlies Judaism and Christianity -- the D is interpreted as the act of giving up all possessions to God and signifies God's dominance over man. These divinely inspired talents are also symbolized by the words disciple, doctor, discipline, dignified, druid, divination and deity, and the Greek word for gift; doron, which accounts for the -dor- in Dorothy, Theodore, Pandora and Isidore.

The D's charitable qualities also shine through in the traditional meanings of the names Daniel (God is my judge), Dara (compassion), David (beloved), Diane (divine), Dominic (belonging to God) and Dorothy (gift of God), but when its dark side is on display, it takes the form of Desdemona (of the devil) and Damien (the anti-hero of The Omen).

It’s not difficult to understand why the D names shine so brightly when it comes to success. They are among the top six letters in each of the categories of sports, money, arts, medical and politics.