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Vice versa

Posted by Bruce Kahl on December 11, 2001

In Reply to: Visa versa posted by Steven E. Kern on December 11, 2001

: Visa versa (sp)
: I am familiar with the phrase, and how to use it within the context of a sentence, but where it came from I haven't a clue.
: Any takers?

The phrase is "vice versa" and has a Latin origin.

"Vice" means "in the place of" or "in succession to" as in "The Vice-President would act in place of the President". ( EEK! ). The root of "vice" is "vix" meaning "change".

"Versa" is a form of the Latin verb "vertere" and is a participle. "Vertere" means "to turn".

So "vice versa" means "the position being reversed".

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Cogito, ergo sum.
I think, therefore I am.

Sum, ergo edo.
I am, therefore I eat.

See also: the mening and origin of 'vice versa'.