View definitions for vis


pronoun as in a possessive form used as an attributive adjective


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Example Sentences

A French wizard discovers his newfound sexuality vis-à-vis a magic wand that happens to be attached to him.

Vis-a-vis writing, Exeter was the place I got interested in writing.

But, to my eyes, that letter says everything about where Clinton stands vis a vis the rest of the Democratic Party.

Not only on the diplomatic level— i.e., vis-a-vis Europe or Israel, but also within Palestinian society.

He defended a “resistance economy” vis-à-vis the West and the U.S.

Je vis M. le Baron d'Holbach environn d'une vieille femme et de deux villageois, l'un vieux comme elle et l'autre jeune.

The controversy of the vis viva was what was the proper definition of the measure of force.

In the debate of the vis viva, it was assumed that in the mutual action of bodies the whole effect of the force is unchanged.

But in this instance, that which the author calls in another passage of his work, the vis Lucilii, fell upon the hard rock.

My fair vis-a-vis looked me now full in the face and smiled, so that a dimple in her right cheek was plainly visible.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a synonym for vis?

Vis is a pronoun that can serve the same grammatical function as his or her (as in That is vis book) OR his or hers (as in That book is vis), except that it’s gender-neutral. Vis is typically used by people who identify as nonbinary or genderqueer, meaning that their gender identify falls outside of the strict binary of only male or only female.

For those who identify in one of these ways and who are deciding which pronouns to use, there are a lot of options.

A pronoun similar in function to vis is xis. Both can be used in ways equivalent to both nonbinary them and nonbinary their.

However, it should be noted that these shouldn’t be considered synonyms of vis in the sense that they are interchangeable when referring to the same person—the pronouns the person has specified are the ones that should be used.

Vis is often used as part of the ve/ver/vis set of pronouns, but it may be used as part of other, similar sets, such as ve/vir/vis.

In the next section, we’ll break down some of the nonbinary pronoun sets that people use.

What can you use instead of the word vis?

First and foremost: if someone says they use vis as one of their pronouns, that’s what you should use when referring to them. Some people might use a mix of pronouns, such as vis and their/theirs, in which case you can use either one, or both at different times.

There are a lot of different nonbinary pronouns, and it can seem overwhelming. To help, here is a chart of some (not all) nonbinary pronouns, along with the grammatical function of each one to help you understand how they’re used (and conjugated).

You can plug each set into this sentence to see how each pronoun is used:

[Column 1 subject form] told me to text [column 2 object form], but I don’t have [column 3 possessive form] number. 

subject form 

(same grammatical function as he, she, and nonbinary they)

object form 

(same grammatical function as him, her, and nonbinary them)

possessive adjective form

(same grammatical function as his, her, and nonbinary their)


In many (but not all) cases, the possessive pronoun form (the one equivalent to theirs, as in That book is theirs) is simply formed by adding –s to the possessive adjective form (the one that’s equivalent to their). Sometimes, it’s the same as the possessive adjective form, as in That is vis book and That book is vis. The reflexive form (the one equivalent to themself) is often formed by simply adding -self to the object form (the one that’s equivalent to them): verself.

What kind of pronoun is vis?

Vis can be used as the possessive form of the personal pronoun ve. Like it’s equivalent their, it’s often considered a possessive pronoun, but it functions as a possessive adjective (also called a possessive determiner).

Like their, vis is used along with third person pronouns (like they and them), which refer to anyone other than the person doing the addressing (first person) or the ones being addressed (second person).

Vis can also be used in the same way as singular theirs—as a predicate adjective showing possession.

Regardless of its grammatical function, vis is what’s called a neopronoun. A neopronoun is a gender-neutral pronoun that has been recently coined to fill the lack of gender-neutral options in English (not all gender-neutral pronouns are neopronouns—singular they, them, their, and theirs have been used for a long time).

For more, check out our guide to gender-neutral pronouns.

And our guide to gender-neutral language.

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On this page you'll find 20 synonyms, antonyms, and words related to vis, such as: my, your, his, her, its, and xyr.

From Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.