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a letter of ordinary size and shape, which is contrasted with the capital (uppercase) letter in contemporary writing systems based on the Latin, Cyrillic, Greek, and Armenian alphabets. The opposition of lowercase and capital letters derives from the opposition of ordinary script letters to ornamental initials, which dates to between the 11th and 15th centuries in countries where the Latin alphabet was used. In the Russian Cyrillic script, the system of capital and lowercase letters was introduced in the early 18th century. In contrast to capital letters, which are derived essentially from the Latin capital script and other classical monumental scripts, the lowercase letters continue the traditions of medieval minuscule script, which was cursive in origin, and the manuscript styles of Russia and Armenia.