New names for Covid variants


Sir, – I see that under the World Health Organisation’s new naming system for Covid strains, “Coronavirus variants . . . have now been assigned the letters of the Greek alphabet in a bid to simplify discussion and pronunciation, while avoiding stigma” (News, June 1st).

The first four letters of the Greek alphabet, alpha, beta, gamma,and delta, have already been allocated.

Whatever about avoiding “stigma”, let’s hope the WHO can avoid having to designate a variant “sigma”, the 18th letter of the Greek alphabet. – Yours, etc,



Co Dublin.