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Formal French Acronym
|Literally||respond if you please|
|Pronunciation||[ehr es vay pay]|
|IPA||[ɛʀ ɛs ve pe]|
Usage notes: RSVP is short for répondez s’il vous plaît, but this acronym has passed out of favor in France, where it’s considered too formal and old-fashioned. Instead, the French say réponse souhaitée and then their preferred date and/or method of response.
|Réponse souhaitée avant le 15 août.||Please respond by 15 August.|
|Réponse souhaitée à 01.23.45.67.89.||Please respond by calling 01.23.45.67.89.|
|Réponse souhaitée par mail.||Please respond by email.|
Though it’s on its last legs in France, RSVP is alive and well on English-language invitations. Unfortunately, most English speakers seem to think it’s just a fancy synonym for "respond" and therefore say "please RSVP," which makes it redundant (or pleading): "please please respond."
RSVP is also used as an informal English verb:
I’m going to RSVP tomorrow.
Everyone prefers RSVPing by email.
Only 10 people have RSVPed so far.
- RSVP = Respond whether your answer is yes or no
- RSVP regrets only = Only respond if you will not attend; not responding is taken as a yes.
Related acronym: SVP / S.V.P. – s’il vous plaît (please)