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Near- and far-in-laws

Keith Dawson has a suggestion for disambiguating “in-law,” which can refer to (for example), your wife’s brother or your sister’s husband. He’s got near-in-laws and far-in-laws. Very handy.

And it raises the question of why English doesn’t already have an easy way of making this distinction. Are we so binary about our family relations that we just don’t give a damn-in-law?

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