One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
What is the origin of ‘love’ meaning ‘nil’ in tennis?
It seems to have been adapted from the phrase 'to play for love (of the game)' (i.e. to play for nothing). Although the theory is often heard that it represents the French word l'oeuf, meaning 'an egg' (from the resemblance between an egg and a nought) this seems unlikely.
See other Questions about word origins.
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