country

noun
coun·try | \ˈkən-trē \
plural countries

Definition of country 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an indefinite usually extended expanse of land : region miles of open country

2a : the land of a person's birth, residence, or citizenship left their country for America

b : a political state or nation or its territory the country of Italy

3a : the people of a state or district : populace Most of the country voted to end the death penalty.

b : jury

c : electorate sense 2 The government will go to the country with this issue.

4 : rural as distinguished from urban areas prefers the country to the city

6 geology : country rock sense 2

country

adjective

Definition of country (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or characteristic of the country country living

2a : of or relating to a decorative style associated with life in the country an English country look also : possessing a style of rustic simplicity country furniture

b : prepared or processed with farm supplies and procedures country ham

3 : of, relating to, suitable for, or featuring country music country singers

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Other Words from country

Noun

countryish \ˈkən-trē-ish \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for country

Synonyms: Noun

commonwealth, land, nation, sovereignty (also sovranty), state

Synonyms: Adjective

bucolic, pastoral, rural, rustic (also rustical)

Antonyms: Adjective

urban

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Did You Know?

The English word country is derived from Latin contra, which means “against” or “on the opposite side.” In Medieval Latin the noun contrata was formed from contra. Contrata was literally “that which is situated opposite the beholder.” But that which is opposite the beholder is just what he or she sees. So contrata meant “landscape.” It also came to mean “expanse of land, region.” This was the original meaning of English country, which over the years has itself developed a number of new meanings.

Examples of country in a Sentence

Noun

The two countries have a lot in common. They drove across the country from California to New York. They are living in different parts of the country. The whole country was stunned by the news. The President has the support of most of the country. He moved to the north country to fish and hunt. We went camping in the hill country. They drove through miles of open country. She lives out in the country. They prefer the country to the city.

Adjective

plain country living among unpretentious people
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But while migrants from other sub-Saharan countries were dropped in the desert secretly and forced to walk for miles under the blistering sun, the Nigeriens have long been driven to the border by convoys. Lori Hinnant, The Christian Science Monitor, "Algeria stops expelling migrants into Sahara after pushback," 13 July 2018 Today, the Whole30 website sees 2 million unique visitors each month from more than 100 countries. Katie Parsons, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Whole30 diet is all the rage: What you need to know," 13 July 2018 But while migrants from other sub-Saharan countries were dropped in the desert secretly and forced to walk for miles under the blistering sun, the Nigeriens have long been driven to the border by convoys. NBC News, "Algeria stops forcing migrants into Sahara after widespread outrage," 13 July 2018 Most of the plastic waste in the oceans comes from countries that don’t have good systems for putting trash in landfills. Camille Harmer, Fortune, "How Banning Plastic Straws Could Make Pollution Even Worse," 12 July 2018 This year's flash mob consisted of over 60 men from several different countries including the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, South Africa, Brazil and Guatemala, Armstead says. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "Flash mob of over 60 a cappella singers fills Chick-fil-A with gospel music," 12 July 2018 The teams that win World Cups are from countries that produce consistent talent. Grant Wahl And Brian Straus, SI.com, "World Cup Daily Podcast: How Finalists France, Croatia Mirror Their 1998 Teams," 12 July 2018 Trump also lashed out at his longtime nemesis, London Mayor Sadiq Khan, a Muslim who has criticized Trump's ban on travel to the United States from several predominately Muslim countries. Gregory Korte, USA TODAY, "President Trump attacks U.K. politicians, says 'baby' blimp makes him feel unwelcome in London," 12 July 2018 This year's nominees come from 13 different countries, with the likes of Netflix's The Crown, BBC's Peaky Blinders, German drama Babylon Berlin and Hulu's The Handmaid's Tale competing for the top honor of best drama series. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, "Rose d'Or TV Festival to Honor Joanna Lumley With Lifetime Achievement Award," 12 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'country.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of country

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for country

Noun

Middle English contree, from Anglo-French cuntree, contré, from Medieval Latin contrata, from Latin contra against, on the opposite side

Adjective

see country entry 1

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Statistics for country

Last Updated

6 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for country

The first known use of country was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for country

country

noun

English Language Learners Definition of country

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an area of land that is controlled by its own government

the country : the people who live in a country

: an area or region that has a particular quality or feature or is known for a particular activity.

country

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of country (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or characteristic of the country

: of or relating to country music

country

noun
coun·try | \ˈkən-trē \
plural countries

Kids Definition of country

1 : a land lived in by a people with a common government the countries of Europe

2 : region sense 1, district good farming country

3 : open rural land away from big towns and cities Take a ride in the country.

4 : the people of a nation a whole country in revolt

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More from Merriam-Webster on country

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for country

Spanish Central: Translation of country

Nglish: Translation of country for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of country for Arabic Speakers

Comments on country

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