Change refers to an instance of something becoming different than it was or being replaced by something new: a change in leadership; changes in the environment. Vicissitude refers to one of a succession of changes or alterations in the state, form, or condition of something over time. The most familiar use of vicissitude is in the plural, as in the vicissitudes of life. In this sense, the vicissitudes—of life, history, politics, fortune, love, or the market—suggests something like “the twists and turns” and “ups and downs” that characterize the course of any of these major human affairs when considered in its entirety. When we use “change” as a mass noun, as in “Change is constant,” this approaches the meaning of vicissitudes, but is more abstract and general. Vicissitudes evokes the particularity and number of the changes we weather.