noun, often attributive
dis·​trict | \ ˈdis-(ˌ)trikt \

Definition of district

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a territorial division (as for administrative or electoral purposes)
b : the basic administrative unit for local government in Northern Ireland
2 : an area, region, or section with a distinguishing character a shopping district


districted; districting; districts

Definition of district (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to divide or organize into districts

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Synonyms for district

Synonyms: Noun

nabe, neighborhood, quarter, section

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Examples of district in a Sentence


Six police officers are in charge of the district. She represents the eighth congressional district.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In its review of 20,000 news stories related to school lockdowns, The Post discovered a disproportionate amount of coverage focused on districts outside large cities. John Woodrow Cox, The Seattle Times, "Numerous school lockdowns are traumatizing the nation’s children," 26 Dec. 2018 A hundred years before Constantine, Emperor Septimius Severus had destroyed a whole district of such homes to build his New Fort—another shift in power in the empire. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Archaeologists map centuries of history beneath world’s oldest cathedral," 30 Nov. 2018 That is what Alan Faena—a man who has created neighborhoods and art districts—has done in his gilded and rouged Miami Beach home. Alejandro Jodorowsky, ELLE Decor, "A Conversation Between Hotelier Alan Faena and Filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky," 14 Nov. 2018 Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar Tlaib and Omar will become the first Muslim women in Congress representing districts in Michigan and Minnesota, respectively. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "America Could Elect More Than 100 Women to the House For the First Time in History," 7 Nov. 2018 Since small districts lack the firepower and technical savvy of a mobilized hacking unit, they’re often left defenseless when placed in the crosshairs. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "If the 2018 Election Is Hacked, This Is How It Will Happen," 5 Nov. 2018 Hof, who turned 72 on Sunday, was the Republican candidate this year in a heavily GOP state legislative district. Fox News, "Dennis Hof, Nevada brothel owner, dead at 72," 16 Oct. 2018 Denham, elected during the Tea Party wave of 2010, is fighting to hold onto a heavily minority district that backed Hillary Clinton by three percentage points in 2016. Theodore Schleifer, Recode, "A venture capitalist is running for Congress in farm country. And his opponent is turning those Silicon Valley bona fides into an insult.," 20 Sep. 2018 These districts have proven successful in states like California and Maryland and hundreds of communities. BostonGlobe.com, "Should Massachusetts allow cities and towns to create Community Benefit Districts?," 13 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Independent districting commissions are certainly an improvement over state legislatures drawing district lines. Lee Drutman, Vox, "One big winner last night: political reform," 7 Nov. 2018 North Shore park districts with fewer beaches have lifeguards on duty for longer periods each day. Tessa Weinberg, chicagotribune.com, "A nighttime drowning in Lake Michigan - and no city lifeguards on duty prompts calls for change," 12 July 2018 The Seminole County school district earned an A, and the other Central Florida districts all got B’s. Leslie Postal, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Florida's schools earn more As and Bs and fewer Fs, state says," 27 June 2018 The council also approved the creation of a municipal utilities district around the development. The Washington Post, NOLA.com, "Housing-starved Houston builds anew in the flood plain," 22 May 2018 The 2-to-1 decision is a victory for Democrats in a years-long battle over the legislative lines, which were drawn after the 2010 census to give the 11 House of Delegates districts a voting population that was least 55 percent black. Rachel Weiner, Washington Post, "Court strikes down Virginia House districts as racial gerrymandering," 26 June 2018 With that district probably out of reach in a November rematch, the Orange County districts become even more important for the Democrats. John Wildermuth, San Francisco Chronicle, "Is Orange County fertile ground for the left? California Dems are counting on it," 11 June 2018 Principal Erica Bowles, formerly principal of Longbranch Elementary, said there are plans to offer tours to district families before the first day of school. Melissa Reinert, Cincinnati.com, "New Boone County middle school Ballyshannon on schedule for August opening," 7 June 2018 Perhaps not coincidentally, Republicans are at this point winning a majority of the primary vote in the three competitive Orange County districts: the aforementioned 39th and 48th, and in Rep. Mimi Walters’s 45th. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "California Democrats Did Well, But Not Perfectly, in Primary," 6 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'district.' 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 district


1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1792, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for district


French, from Medieval Latin districtus jurisdiction, district, from distringere to distrain — more at distrain

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Statistics for district

Last Updated

12 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for district

The first known use of district was in 1611

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More Definitions for district



English Language Learners Definition of district

: an area established by a government for official government business

: an area or section that has some special characteristic or purpose


dis·​trict | \ ˈdi-ˌstrikt \

Kids Definition of district

1 : an area or section (as of a city or nation) set apart for some purpose our school district
2 : an area or region with some special feature the city's shopping district



Legal Definition of district

: a territorial division (as of a nation, state, county, or city) for administrative, judicial, electoral, or other purposes: as
a : an administrative unit especially of a town or city established for the performance of a special governmental function the water district park district
c : one of the divisions of the United States or of the individual states served by a particular federal or state court

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More from Merriam-Webster on district

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with district

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for district

Spanish Central: Translation of district

Nglish: Translation of district for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of district for Arabic Speakers

Comments on district

What made you want to look up district? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


tremendous in size, volume, or degree

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