Vis à vis is a preposition meaning ‘in relation to’ or ‘regarding’ according to the Collins English Dictionary & Thesaurus. Here are a few facts noted from Phrases.org.uk about the phrase vis à vis:
- The French spell it vis à vis.
- The English sometimes miss off the grave accent on the à and print it as ‘vis-a-vis’ or ‘viz-a-viz’.
- The literal French meaning is ‘face to face’.
- The author and politian Horace Walpole introduced the phrase in the mid 1800s and the English have used it ever since.
- Horace Walpole wrote a letter in 1753 which indicated that he was being followed by a vis à vis (a small carriage with people sitting face to face).
Sentences using ‘vis à vis’
- When meaning ‘in relation to’ it can be used in a sentence as follows: “Where are you vis à vis the finishing line?”
- When meaning ‘face to face’ it can be used in a sentence as follows: “She found herself dancing vis à vis with a prince”.
That’s it for today – I’ll save the phrase ‘dos à dos’ for another day.
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Collins English Dictionary & Thesaurus