out of wedlock

Idioms & Phrases

out of wedlock

Of parents not legally married, as in Over the centuries many royal children were born out of wedlock. The noun wedlock, for the state of being married, is rarely heard today except in this phrase, first recorded in 1675; its converse, in wedlock, dates from the 1300s and is even more rarely used.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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out of wedlock

1. of biological parents not married to each other; "this child was born illegitimately" [syn: illegitimately] [ant: legitimately
2. of unwed parents; "he was born out of wedlock" 
WordNet® 3.0, © 2006 by Princeton University.
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