noun (1)
coun·​ty | \ ˈkau̇n-tē How to pronounce county (audio) \
plural counties

Definition of county

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the domain of a count
2a : one of the territorial divisions of England and Wales and formerly also of Scotland and Northern Ireland constituting the chief units for administrative, judicial, and political purposes
b(1) : the people of a county
(2) British : the gentry of a county
3 : the largest territorial division for local government within a state of the U.S.
4 : the largest local administrative unit in various countries


noun (2)
plural counties

Definition of county (Entry 2 of 2)


Other Words from county

Noun (1)

county adjective

First Known Use of county

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1539, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for county

Noun (1)

Middle English counte, from Anglo-French cunté, counté, from Medieval Latin comitatus, from Late Latin, office of a count, from comit-, comes count — more at count

Noun (2)

modification of Middle French comte

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Time Traveler for county

Time Traveler

The first known use of county was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“County.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for county


coun·​ty | \ ˈkau̇n-tē How to pronounce county (audio) \
plural counties

Kids Definition of county

: a division of a state or country for local government

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More from Merriam-Webster on county

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with county

Spanish Central: Translation of county

Nglish: Translation of county for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of county for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about county

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