NEW YORK CITY, NY (Observer Update) - Same-sex marriage might not be recognized in most states, but it is in the dictionary. Merriam-Webster included a secondary definition of marriage to recognize same-sex relationships several years before Gay couples were allowed to tie the knot anywhere in the United States, but the change had gone largely unnoticed until the ultra-conservative, virulently anti-LGBT World Net Daily news site reported it.
In its Web and print editions, Merriam-Webster defines marriage as "the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law." But in a nod to evolving ideas of love and English usage, the Springfield, Mass.-based company in 2003 added a secondary meaning for "marriage" as "the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage."
Merriam-Webster said in a statement that the edited entry merely reflected the frequency with which the term "same-sex marriage" had popped up in print and become part of the general lexicon.
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