Definition of council in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkounsəl/


1An advisory, deliberative, or legislative body of people formally constituted and meeting regularly: an official human rights council
More example sentences
  • When papers were served on the council, officials took steps to find a place for the boy.
  • A report was given on the council meeting which was attended by two members of the guild.
  • She is scheduled to formally open the advisory council's standing committee meeting on Thursday.
advisory body, board, committee, brain trust, commission, assembly, panel;
synod, convocation
1.1A body of people elected to manage the affairs of a city, county, or other municipal district.
Example sentences
  • Local government consists of elected county and municipal councils.
  • City and district councils are at the forefront of dog control.
  • Mayors and municipal councils are elected directly by the local community.
local authority, municipal authority, local government, administration, executive, chamber, assembly, corporation
1.2An ecclesiastical assembly.
Example sentences
  • Before deciding to accept, he conferred with his synod council.
  • So it seems the plenary council and synod proposals have been put on a back burner.
  • Synod councils can send recommendations to the Church Council before its April meeting.
1.3An assembly or meeting for consultation or advice: that evening, she held a family council
More example sentences
  • She has no business in a family council only open to family members.
  • Call a family council at some other time to work out such problems.
  • Ordinarily, a family council is based on principles and processes set out in a family charter but this is not always the case.
meeting, gathering, conference, conclave, assembly


Old English (in the sense 'ecclesiastical assembly'): from Anglo-Norman French cuncile, from Latin concilium 'convocation, assembly', from con- 'together' + calare 'summon'. Compare with counsel.

Words that rhyme with council

counsel, groundsel

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: coun·cil

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