- The largest local administrative subdivision of most states of the U.S.
- Any of the chief administrative districts into which England, Wales, Northern Ireland, and Ireland are divided.
- An administrative district in certain Canadian provinces.
- An electoral district in rural New Zealand.
An example of a county is Suffolk County on Long Island in New York.
An example of county used as an adjective is in the phrase "county court," which means a court of that particular geographic area.
Other Word Forms
Origin of county
- Middle English counte territorial division from Old French conte the territory of a count from Medieval Latin comitātus from Late Latin the office of count from Latin retinue from comes comit- companion ei- in Indo-European roots
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition