When this consonantal u (English w as seen in words borrowed very early from Latin like wall and wine) passed into the sound of English v (labio-dental) is not certain, but Germanic words borrowed into Latin in the 5th century A.D.
In modern times attempts have been made to assign to it the consonantal value of U, but in English another symbol W is used for this, while V has received the value of the voiced form of F, which itself had originally a sound resembling the English W (see under F).
The alphabet of the Sabaean inscriptions is most closely akin to the Ethiopic, but is purely consonantal, without the modifications in the consonantal forms which Ethiopic has devised to express vowels.
Margin the Jewish interpretation) to be merely a translation of the Jewish interpretation; and to the present day it is usual, though obviously uncritical and wrong, to describe perfectly legitimate translations of the received consonantal text, if they happen to presuppose other vowels than those provided by Jewish tradition, as based on emendation; even in the English edition of Haupt's Sacred Books of the Old Testament (see below) the possibility of this unfortunate misunderstanding is not altogether removed.
In Late Latin there was a tendency to this spirant pronunciation which appears as early as the beginning of the 2nd century A.D.; by the 3rd century b and consonantal u are inextricably confused.
Many languages find the combination qu, when both sounds are consonantal (qw), difficult; q being the deepest guttural while u (English w) is a lip sound, the points of production are nearly as far separate as they can be.
It is only by the most careful scrutiny, or the exercise of the most piercing insight, that the imperfectly spelled Egyptian has been made to yield up one grammatical secret after another in the light brought to bear upon it from Coptic. Demotic grammar ought soon to be thoroughly comprehensible in its forms, and the study of Late Egyptian should not stand far behind that of demotic. On the other hand, Middle Egyptian, and still mote Old Egyptian, which is separated from Middle Egyptian by a wide gap, will perhaps always be to us little more than consonantal skeletons, the flesh and blood of their vocalization being for the most part irretrievably lost.
The only possible consonantal nexus in purely Malay words is that of a nasal and mute, a liquid and mute and vice versa, and a liquid and nasal.
The Egyptian system of writing, as opposed to the Coptic, showed only the consonantal skeletons of words: it could not record internal vowel-changes; and semi-consonants, even when radicals, were often omitted in writing.
More important are those passages in which the Massoretes have definitely adopted a variation from the consonantal text.