Versus — Not Verse — Not Even Viz

Let’s go back to pronouncing “vs.” properly.

The abbreviation “vs.” is pronounced “versus.” That is the Latin word for which it is an abbreviation. It is not pronounced “verse,” even though everybody has been pronouncing it that way lately, even sportscasters, such as in “Ravens verse Browns.” I have even seen in writing the word “verse” when it should have been “versus.”

This is a phenomenon of the past couple of years, but it’s not too late. No one has to succumb to verbal trends.

When I was reading MAD magazine as a kid with its comic “Spy vs. Spy,” I pronounced “vs.” in my head as “viz” instead of “versus” because I didn’t know the proper pronunciation or its meaning. Thank goodness I never had an occasion to say it out loud.

We can do this. We can get it right.

Versus. Not verse. Not even viz.