(noun) The condition or practice of being married to multiple spouses at the same time, typically with the connotation of illegality.

Audio Pronunciation: (big·a·my)

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Usage Notes:

  • Plural: bigamies
  • Bigamy is the same as polygamy and used more commonly outside of the social sciences, particularly in law and is punishable as a crime in some locales.
  • Bigamy used in a sentence: Pat is married to both Casey and Joey but the authorities found out and Pat has been charged with bigamy.
  • Derived terms sentence: A (noun) bigamist (adverbbigamously engages in a (adjective) bigamous or (adjective) bigamistic relationship.

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Works Consulted

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. 5th ed. 2011. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Griffiths, Heather, Nathan Keirns, Eric Strayer, Susan Cody-Rydzewski, Gail Scaramuzzo, Tommy Sadler, Sally Vyain, Jeff Bry, Faye Jones. 2016. Introduction to Sociology 2e. Houston, TX: OpenStax.

Merriam-Webster. (N.d.) Merriam-Webster Dictionary. (

Oxford University Press. (N.d.) Oxford Dictionaries. (

Princeton University. 2010. WordNet. (

Random House Webster’s College Dictionary. 1997. New York: Random House.

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation. (

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wiktionary, The Free Dictionary. Wikimedia Foundation. (

How to Cite the Definition of Bigamy

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “bigamy.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved May 20, 2019 (

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

bigamy. (2013). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “bigamy.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed May 20, 2019.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“bigamy.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2013. Web. 20 May. 2019. <>.