Weddings are all about tradition. There's the obvious tradition of a bride wearing white (and guests wisely not wearing white), the slightly more complex set of rules about wedding invitations, and then the traditional wedding faux pas we all strive to avoid. But what about the bride's traditional title change from Miss to Mrs.—where does that "r" even come from? And why is Mrs. pronounced "misses"?
Enter: The good people at Mental Floss, who recently uncovered the
But over time, the pronunciation of the word changed: Mistress was soon
The saga gets even more complicated. By the late 18th century, the title "Miss" evolved to indicate an unmarried woman of high social status and "Mrs." came to imply a married woman, according to Britannica.
To further complicate matters, there's the lingering difference between the spelling and pronunciation of Mrs. Mental Floss points out that it's simply because writing "
Later on, in the 20th century, the term Ms. was born to refer to married and unmarried women alike, regardless of age. The New York Times referred to Ms. as a "tactfully ambiguous compromise between Miss and Mrs." In the 1970s, the feminist movement helped transform Ms. into the term we commonly use today, Good Housekeeping reports.
What moniker is next in the dizzying roulette of Mrs., Miss., and Ms.? Only time will tell.
This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.