What is the meaning of the term 'viz-a-viz' ........ ???
When 'vis--vis' was introduced into England it was provided with two distinct meanings, both of which were in use from the 1750s onward. Oddly, it seems that these were both introduced by the author and politician Horace Walpole.
The first meaning was the literal translation from the French, i.e. 'face-to-face'. Walpole was an incurable letter writer and, fortunately for us, many of his letters have been published in a collection of books, which provides the first citation we have of the term in English, in Letter to George Montague, July 1753:
"He was walking slowly in the beau milieu of Brentford town, without any company, but with a brown lap-dog with long ears, two pointers ...more