Definition of township in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtounˌSHip/


1North American A division of a county with some corporate powers.
Example sentences
  • North and South Fayette townships in Allegheny County posted population gains of 28 percent and 19 percent, respectively.
  • Since then, many counties and townships have switched to an electronic system eager to prevent future problems.
  • The generally accepted figure for our total tax load from townships, counties, states and the federals is 33 percent of GDP.
1.1A district six miles square.
Example sentences
  • Elsewhere the pattern reflects the rectilinear network of roads, which in turn derives from the early surveys of the territory based on uniform square townships six miles on a side.
  • By the end of the nineteenth century, most of the continent had been squared off into townships, and sections.
2(In South Africa) a suburb or city of predominantly black occupation, formerly officially designated for black occupation by apartheid legislation.
Example sentences
  • The site is close to Khayelitsha, a township of 500,000 black South Africans who suffered under apartheid and still live in poverty, with a 90 per cent unemployment rate.
  • Instead, the accounts of life in the black townships of South Africa resonate with his descriptions of Robben Island as a place that intensifies the degradation and violence of apartheid.
  • Boxing is a rough trade and South Africa's crime-ridden townships and inner cities are rough places, with widespread poverty and glaring disparities of income.
3British historical A manor or parish as a territorial division.
3.1A small town or village forming part of a large parish.
Example sentences
  • That is something which has been recognised by church leaders and councillors in Queensbury who are campaigning to be allowed to join the growing number of villages and townships in the Bradford district which have a parish council.
  • A number of the signs have cropped up around the township and town council Chairman John Brodwell has condemned the advertisers.
  • He then became an assistant organiser in a village and township.


Old English tūnscipe 'the inhabitants of a village' (see town, -ship).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: town·ship

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