HRC Blog

Oxford English Dictionary Officially Updates Marriage Definition to Include Same-Sex Couples

The world’s most prestigious English-language dictionary has updated its definition of marriage to include same-sex couples.

We first noted in July that compilers of the Oxford English Dictionary were considering a more inclusive definition of marriage.

The OED online now defines marriage as ‘the relation between persons married to each other’ as well as ‘the condition of being a husband or wife.’ It also notes, ‘the term is now sometimes used with reference to long-term relationships between partners of the same sex,’ according to Gay Star News.

Macmillandictionary.com became the first UK online dictionary to adopt a similar change.

Same-sex couples in England and Wales were given the right to marry in July, with weddings to begin in 2014.

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