N, 14th letter of the English alphabet, corresponds with the 14th Semitic letter nun, denoting a fish. After it was adopted by the Greeks from the Phoenicians, nun became nu. Its present form is that used by the Romans. When written with a tilde (common in Spanish words), n is pronounced as if it were followed by a y (cañon = canyon). As an abbreviation, n represents noun, neuter, name, and north. In mathematics it may stand for any number. It is the chemical symbol of nitrogen.