Why Does ‘Love’ In Tennis Mean ‘Zero’? Here Is The Answer

Tennis score is perplexing altogether, let alone just calling a zero score ‘love.’ However, the theory varies widely as to what love implies in the game and how does it come to be.

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One of the most popular theories is that ‘Love’ has been hazed from French word l’oeuf  which means ‘the egg since zero is shaped like an egg. It’s the same as using a ‘duck’ in cricket to represent zero-score, much like the shape of a duck’s egg. The reason for such a belief comes from the origin of word ‘Tennis’ itself, which originated from the French word ‘Tenez’ meaning ‘to receive.’

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However, the Oxford English Dictionary disagrees and states that the ‘Love’ in tennis is in fact, love. Despite the player being unable to score, it is the love for the game that keeps him in the game. Some say that when the score is zero for both players at the beginning, the players have ‘love’ for each other.

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