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    • Join Date: May 2009
    • Posts: 2
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    What is exact meaning of "-in-" construct?

    For example:
    father-in-law, commander-in-chief.

    How to express the above in different words?

    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434
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    Re: -in-??

    When a person marries, there is a legal link made between the family of the person being married and the bride or groom, so that in law the woman becomes a new daughter to her parents-in-law and the bridegroom becomes a new son, They are the daughter-in-law and son-in-law.

    A commander-in-chief in the commander above all others in the military.

    There is no other way of expressing this. Hyphenating ensures no confusion about the nature of the position by holding the phrase together.

    • Join Date: May 2009
    • Posts: 2
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    Re: -in-??

    Thanks very much for your response.
    than, is the following statement correct?

    -in- creates name of the position, indicating that position name is not chosen by a person but given by joining a group (be it a family, government or other body) by choice or assignment.


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