Invention of Hello

Sumon Basak
Aug 25, 2020

Rumors about the connection between Bell’s fiancé & ‘Hello’ are myths.

Photo by Jez Timms on Unsplash

‘Hello, are you ready to listen?’

The first use of ‘Hello’ by Bell while speaking to his girlfriend- a myth, debunked!

The telephonic-greeting was first used by Thomas Edison.

Graham Bell invented the telephone, Edison coined the introductory word.

Evidently, Bell was insistent with ‘Ahoy!’ to initiate a conversation.

Francis Jehl’s memoir suggests early use of the sonorous greeting.

Jehl, a former Edison employee, mentions its deafening echo in Edison lab, back in 1878.

Factually, ‘Hello’ was first cited in the Oxford English Dictionary in 1883, 5 years later.

Edison’s credit was also acknowledged by former AT&T president Frederick Fish, according to Jehl.

‘Hello’ also made its way in Mark Twain’s literature, published in 1880.

Twain’s imaginary telephonic conversation contained ‘Hello Girls’.

One puzzling question still prevails, why ‘Hello’?

Educated guesswork is likely to work.

Upon discovering the principle of sound recording in 1877, Edison shouted ‘Halloo!’

The word resonated with him & it slowly got modified to Hello over the years.

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Sumon Basak

Full time chemist. Part time writer. No longer writing on Medium. Committing time to writing research for laypeople at sumonbasak.com/blog