Definition of county in English:


Line breaks: county
Pronunciation: /ˈkaʊnti

noun (plural counties)

  • 1A territorial division of some countries, forming the chief unit of local administration: one of the most attractive towns in the county [as modifier]: administration at county level
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    • England is also a culture of many smaller regionalisms, still centered on the old governmental unit of the county and the local villages and towns.
    • But he claimed highways chiefs from the county's local councils had been insistent that the 11 additional sites were needed now.
    • Residents will have the chance to express their views and concerns about local policing to the county's chief constable in a live webchat next week.
  • 1.1British A sporting team playing for a county: it is the county’s third final in four years
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    • He was the leading scorer for his county despite his team finishing last in the championships.
    • He used to play hockey for a national league team and his county but nowadays he runs to keep fit.
    • The county's governing body is launching a veterans' league, mainly consisting of semi-professionals who are beyond their sell-by date.
  • 1.2US A political and administrative division of a state.
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    • His spending blazed a new path through the county's usual political circuit.
    • Meanwhile, the man and his family have retaliated against the county and its political system.
    • The county has a political structure that has pushed for integrated housing and public facilities.
  • 1.3 [as modifier] British Relating to or characteristic of aristocratic people with an ancestral home in a particular county: a county grande dame
    More example sentencesSynonyms
    landowning, landed, upper-class, well born, high-born, noble-born, noble, aristocratic, patrician, titled, blue-blooded, born with a silver spoon in one's mouth; British upmarket
    informal upper-crust, top-drawer, {huntin', shootin', and fishin'}, tweedy, classy, posh
    archaic gentle, of gentle birth


Middle English: from Old French conte, from Latin comitatus, from comes, comit- (see count2). The word seems first to have denoted a periodical meeting held to transact shire business.

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