How many letters are there in the English alphabet? 26. How many letters are there in the French alphabet? One could say only 25. All the words that begin with ‘w’ are of foreign origin. Wagon comes from the German and most of the other words come from English such as waterproof, web, weekend, western, wharf, whisky, whist and wigwam. French towns that have a ‘W’ in them are mostly found in the north-east or the east where Germanic influences were historically strongest.