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What is the difference between a Commonwealth and a State?

According to the state website kentucky.gov the use of the term commonwealth doesn't have any particular significance. Commonwealth means an organized political community -- what we today call a state. It was commonly used in the eighteenth century. When Kentucky became part of the United States it merely took the old form of its title. The term is now also used to designate independent areas associated with the United States, such as the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.


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