A complete list of English words that contain ‘vv’ (two Vs in a row)

by Jakub Marian

Tip: See my list of the Most Common Mistakes in English. It will teach you how to avoid mis­takes with com­mas, pre­pos­i­tions, ir­reg­u­lar verbs, and much more (PDF Version).

They are not very common, but still there are some English words that contain two Vs in a row. Unlike two Us in a row which are present only in borrowed words (usually from Latin), two Vs are generally used in proper English words to modify the sound of the preceding vowel; for example “savy” (a non-existing word) would be pronounced say-vee, whereas “savvy” is pronounced sæv-ee. Here are all such words:

bevvy /ˈbɛvi/ (bev-ee) is a slang term for a drink (i.e. a beverage). The plural is “bevvies”.
bovver /ˈbɒvə/ (bovv-ə); Cockney slang for “bother” that has partially entered mainstream usage via the term “bovver boots”, which refers to heavy steel-toe boots, usually associated with violence and skinhead culture.
chivvy /ˈtʃɪvi/ (tchi-vee) means “to try and make somebody do something quickly”. The other forms are “chivvies”, “chivvying”, and “chivvied”.
civvy /ˈsɪvi/ (siv-ee) is a slang term (it can be a noun or an adjective) referring to a civilian. In British armed forces, “civvy street” refers to the civilian life in general. The plural is “civvies”.
flivver /ˈflɪvɚ/ (fli-vr) is an outdated American slang term used for a small car that gave a rough ride.
divvy /ˈdɪvi/ (div-ee) is a slang term meaning “to divide”. Derived expressions are “divvies”, “divvying”, and “divvied”.
luvvy or luvvie /ˈlʌvi/ (love-ee) is, in British English, an actor or actress who is particularly effusive or affected. Informally, it may be an affectionate term for a person. The plural form is “luvvies”.
navvy /ˈnævi/ (-vee) is a person employed to do hard physical work. The plural is “navvies”.
revved /rɛvd/ (revd) and revving /ˈrɛvɪŋ/ (rev-ing) are derived forms of “rev”, a verb meaning “to increase the speed of”.
savvy /ˈsævi/ (-vee) means “having practical knowledge of something”. Derived forms are “savvier” and “savviest”.
skivvy /ˈskɪvi/ (skiv-ee) – in British English, “skivvy” is an informal term for a servant who does boring work (or a verb meaning “to do boring work”). In American English, it is an informal term for underwear. The plural (or the third person singular) is skivvies; when used as a verb, the derived forms are “skivvies”, “skivvying”, and “skivvied”.
spivvy /ˈspɪvi/ (spiv-ee) – related to are being a spiv, which is an old-fashioned slang term defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as “a man engaging in petty black market dealings, characterized by flashy dress”. Related terms would be “spivvier” and “spivviest”.

By the way, if you haven’t read my guide on how to avoid the most common mistakes in English, make sure to check it out; it deals with similar topics.

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