And vice versa…

854060What does it mean?

Vice versa means, quite literally as you’ll hear it used, ‘the other way round.’

Etymology

Vice versa is a Latin term. It loosely translates to English as ‘position to turn.’ The first recorded use of it as part of the English language was as early as 1601.

Proper Use

The proper use of ‘vice versa’ is to describe something that is ‘the other way around,’ ‘likewise,’ ‘back to front,’ etc. A few examples would be:

‘She dislikes him, and vice versa.’

‘He got her a present for her birthday, and vice versa.’

‘Elephants can’t walk like humans can, and vice versa.’

Improper Use

Vice versa is used within the English language so commonly that it is rare to hear it misused in terms of meaning. The most common improper use of vice versa is the spelling; it is often misspelt, and mispronounced, ‘visa versa.’ It’s a mistake that’s easy to make in your writing, considering how regularly we hear or read it spelt this way. Be wary of it.