Is it right to use the preposition "with" instead of "to" after the word "marry or married" under any given circumstances if we change the position of gender being mentioned?

For example:

"She is married to John"

Can we also say:

"John married with her" OR "John is married with her"

I highlighted this mistake in the notes of an educationist which he gave to his students. I raised this point with him that "to" is the only preposition which is used after the word "married". However, he argued that use of preposition depended on the position of gender being mentioned, thus the change in the position of gender also changes the preposition and it is right to use the preposition "with" after the verb "marry".

Can anyone explain?

  • 4
    I have never heard about the preposition choice depending on gender. How about if John is married to Paul, or Mary is married to Alice? If there is such a gender-distinction, I'd see that as all the more reason to only use "to". I know many Dutch people say "married with", because that is a literal translation from Dutch. I have always seen it as totally wrong in English though. I hope there will be an answer to shed some more light on this :)
    – oerkelens
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:03
  • 2
    @oerkelens: As a (Flemish) Dutch speaker myself, "Married With Children" made no sense to me for years, until a Brit explained why my version ("married to children") isn't actually valid in English.
    – Flater
    Commented Sep 27, 2017 at 14:18

4 Answers 4


When talking about people it's either "She is married to him" or "She married him". When talking about objects the preposition "with" is used: "This wine marries well with beef"

Note: the above is an oversimplification - marry "with" was certainly used in past literature. The following chart shows the relationship, married with is multiplied by 10 otherwise it just shows up as a line at the bottom. This also makes no attempt at separating things like "wine married to beef", which might explain, or not, the apparent increase of usage in the last 50 years

  • So if you objectify women or men, it would be correct to use with in case of people...
    – oerkelens
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:04
  • @oerkelens Can a person marry an object? The worst fears of gay marriage opponents have been realized.
    – choster
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:07
  • The sad truth is that indeed marriage partners can be culturally seen as not much more than objects... If gay marriage opponents would aim their energy at that, I would support them :)
    – oerkelens
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:13
  • Although, in the Netherlands it used to be possible to marry a glove. This was done when the prospective husband would be away (e.g. at war).
    – oerkelens
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:14
  • @choster The internet says yes. Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:17

"Marry with" carries the connotation of making the decision of getting married himself. It is more like of choice than of settlement by others in the family. Old Oxford English would provide the interested learners with this explanatory usage and definition of the "marry followed by with". However, since ensuring gender discrimination has become the prime priority of the liberals, it has become more neutral using "to"after married. Jhon was married with her : This gives the rational impression and sense Jhon himself took decision to marry her. The usage of "with after married "is nowhere to be seen in the modern English---- It just makes sense in this way and is used in the old English in almost similar connotation. She is married to Jhon : This connotes the sense she married Jhon , decided /arranged by someone else having ultimate decision to make.

  • 2
    Is there any source or support for these peculiar claims? (And Jhon is not an English name). Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 18:07

I think we should use preposition 'to' while using married in passive construction i.e., [She is married to him] but we should use no preposition married is used in active voice i.e., [he married her].


The preposition with seems to be fine in a context like:

Prince William married with Kate Middleton

(Someone married Prince William with Kate Middleton)


Prince William married Kate Middleton

(Prince William did it)

also possible,

Prince William married to Kate Middleton

  • +1 since I don't see why someone downvoted you. archaic: maybe, valid: why not?
    – msam
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 15:33
  • The first and third examples in this answer are extremely awkward and unnatural.
    – Tristan r
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 19:26
  • @Tristanr Being awkward or unnatural is all about culture in this context, not grammar. I will be editing in more later on.
    – Kris
    Commented Apr 16, 2014 at 6:59
  • Kris, I have not heard anyone at all, use examples like them. If they are used, they must be exceptionally rare. They just sound awkward and different from everyday English.
    – Tristan r
    Commented Apr 16, 2014 at 15:18
  • @Tristanr Does that add anything to your previous comment?
    – Kris
    Commented Apr 17, 2014 at 6:01

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