What would a month of ampersand be without a little history? The long-short of it is that ampersand is a corruption of the phrase "and per se and". The Scots and Scottish English name for & is epershand, derived from "et per se and", with the same meaning. Through folk etymology it has been claimed that Andre-Marie Ampere used the symbol in his widely read publications, and that people began calling the new shape "Ampere's and".
*all of this thanks to Wikipedia
No matter how this gorgeous thing came to be, there's one indisputable fact. It's always been beautiful.