Technically the US of A consists of 46 states and 4 commonwealths (which are treated just as a state is treated). The 4 commonwealths are: Kentucky, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
"This designation, which has no legal impact, emphasizes that they have a "government based on the common consent of the people" as opposed to one legitimized through their earlier royal colony status that was derived from the monarch of Great Britain. The word commonwealth in this context refers to the common "wealth", or welfare, of the public and is derived from a loose translation of the Latin term res publica (cf. the 17th-century Commonwealth of England). The use of the term also derives from the use of English common law in the North American colonies. Some vestiges of the influence of common law can still be found in some legal concepts and principles in the Commonwealths, particularly in Virginia with its independent cities, which have their origin in the old English shire system, which was a part of how early Virginia was organized."
Of course Pennsylvania is a state but you may be confused by hearing it called the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. You're not alone. It confuses me too. Anybody care to explain it for a backward antipodean?
7 months ago
Last edited at 7:10PM on 8/6/2013
Under Federal law Pennsylvania is a State. Under State law, Pennsylvania is a Commonwealth. Founders John Adams of Massachusetts and George Mason of Virginia were followers of seventeenth century English philosopher John Locke and therefore chose the word commonwealth to distinguish the wealth of their colonies from that of the English Monarchy. Pennsylvania did as well, as did Kentucky when it split from Virginia.
It's a country. Capital: Harrisburg Largest city: Philadelphia Population: 13 million Area: 46,055 sq mi 2.7% water Demonym: Pennsylvanian Motto: Virtue Liberty and Independence
All the facts are true but one
OF COURSE ITS A STATE WHERE DO YOU LIVE THAT YOUR ASKING THIS QUESTION. If you live in another country its okay. BUT IF YOUR AMERICAN WHY DO YOU ASK THIS QUESTION HOW OLD ARE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!