A wife is a female lifetime partner in a continuing marital relationship. A wife may also be referred to as a spouse. The term continues to be applied to a woman who has separated from her husband and ceases to be applied to such a woman only when her marriage has come to an end following a legally recognised divorce or the death of her spouse. The rights and obligations of the wife in relation to her husband and others, and her status in the community and in law, varies between cultures and has varied over time. In a heterosexual relationship, a woman's spouse is her husband.

The term is most commonly applied to a woman in a legally sanctioned marriage, and not to a woman in another cohabitation relationship such as a concubine, mistress etc. However, a woman in a so-called common law marriage may describe herself as a common law wife, de facto wife, or simply a wife; but sometimes the female is described as "girlfriend" or "partner". Those seeking to advance gender neutrality may refer to both marriage partners as "spouses", and many countries are rewording their statute law by replacing "wife" and "husband" with "spouse". Also, in a polygamous marriage, each woman is described as a wife.

Read more about Wife:  Summary, Related Terminology, Differences in Cultures, Expectation of Fidelity

Other articles related to "wife":

Manannán Mac Lir - Familial Relations
... According to Táin Bó Cúailnge (the Cattle Raid of Cooley), his wife is the beautiful goddess, Fand ("Pearl of Beauty" or "A Tear" - later remembered as a "Fairy Queen", though ... Other sources say his wife was the goddess Áine, though she is at other times said to be his daughter ... of a bargain made with Manannán (either by him, or by his wife) to let Manannán have a child by his wife ...
... Aesacus sorrowed for the death of his wife or would-be lover, a daughter of the river Cebren, and was transformed into a bird ... The Bibliotheca makes Aesacus son of Priam's first wife Arisbe, daughter of Merops ... In Apollodorus the deceased daughter of Cebren for whom Aesacus mourns is his wife named Asterope ...
Vlad The Impaler - Family - First Marriage
... Vlad's first wife bore him two sons Mihnea I "the Bad" (Mihnea I cel Rău, ?-1510) and Mihail (?-1485) ... archer, having seen the shadow of Vlad's wife behind a window, shot an arrow through the window into Vlad's main quarters with a message warning him that Radu's army was approaching ... Upon reading the message, Vlad's wife threw herself from the tower into a tributary of the Argeș River flowing below the castle, saying she would rather rot and ...
... an Oceanid Leucippe, a daughter of Thestor, sister of Calchas and Theonoe Leucippe, the wife of Ilus and mother of Laomedon Leucippe, the wife of Thestius and mother of Iphicles, Prothous, and Cometes Leucippe ...
Leonidas I - Life
... prevail upon King Anaxandridas to set aside his wife and take another ... Anaxandridas refused, claiming his wife was blameless, whereupon the ephors agreed to allow him to take a second wife without setting aside his first ... This second wife, a descendent of Chilon the Wise, promptly bore a son, Cleomenes ...

Famous quotes containing the word wife:

    By taking a second wife he pays the highest compliment to the first, by shewing that she made him so happy as a married man, that he wishes to be so a second time.
    Samuel Johnson (1709–1784)

    Yeah, if it hadn’t been for me everybody’d be a lot better off—my wife and my kids and my friends.... I wish I’d never been born. I suppose it’d been better if I’d never been born at all.
    Frances Goodrich (1891–1984)

    Of all things in life, Mrs. Lee held this kind of court-service in contempt, for she was something more than republican—a little communistic at heart, and her only serious complaint of the President and his wife was that they undertook to have a court and to ape monarchy. She had no notion of admitting social superiority in any one, President or Prince, and to be suddenly converted into a lady-in-waiting to a small German Grand-Duchess, was a terrible blow.
    Henry Brooks Adams (1838–1918)