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4 definitions found
 for county
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  County \Coun"ty\ (koun"t[y^]), n.; pl. Counties (-t[i^]z). [F.
     comt['e], fr. LL. comitatus. See Count.]
     1. An earldom; the domain of a count or earl. [Obs.]
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. A circuit or particular portion of a state or kingdom,
        separated from the rest of the territory, for certain
        purposes in the administration of justice and public
        affairs; -- called also a shire. See Shire.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              Every county, every town, every family, was in
              agitation.                            --Macaulay.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     3. A count; an earl or lord. [Obs.] --Shak.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     County commissioners. See Commissioner.
  
     County corporate, a city or town having the privilege to be
        a county by itself, and to be governed by its own sheriffs
        and other magistrates, irrespective of the officers of the
        county in which it is situated; as London, York, Bristol,
        etc. [Eng.] --Mozley & W.
  
     County court, a court whose jurisdiction is limited to
        county.
  
     County palatine, a county distinguished by particular
        privileges; -- so called a palatio (from the palace),
        because the owner had originally royal powers, or the same
        powers, in the administration of justice, as the king had
        in his palace; but these powers are now abridged. The
        counties palatine, in England, are Lancaster, Chester, and
        Durham.
  
     County rates, rates levied upon the county, and collected
        by the boards of guardians, for the purpose of defraying
        the expenses to which counties are liable, such as
        repairing bridges, jails, etc. [Eng.]
  
     County seat, a county town. [U.S.]
  
     County sessions, the general quarter sessions of the peace
        for each county, held four times a year. [Eng.]
  
     County town, the town of a county, where the county
        business is transacted; a shire town.
        [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  county
      n 1: (United Kingdom) a region created by territorial division
           for the purpose of local government; "the county has a
           population of 12,345 people"
      2: (United States) the largest administrative district within a
         state; "the county plans to build a new road"

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  93 Moby Thesaurus words for "county":
     Kreis, ally, archbishopric, archdiocese, archduchy, archdukedom,
     arrondissement, bailiwick, bishopric, body politic, borough,
     buffer state, canton, captive nation, chieftaincy, chieftainry,
     city, city-state, colony, commonweal, commonwealth, commune,
     congressional district, constablewick, country, departement,
     diocese, district, domain, dominion, duchy, dukedom, earldom,
     electoral district, electorate, empery, empire, free city,
     government, grand duchy, hamlet, hundred, kingdom, land,
     magistracy, mandant, mandate, mandated territory, mandatee,
     mandatory, metropolis, metropolitan area, nation, nationality,
     oblast, okrug, parish, polis, polity, possession, power, precinct,
     principality, principate, protectorate, province,
     puppet government, puppet regime, realm, region, republic, riding,
     satellite, seneschalty, settlement, sheriffalty, sheriffwick,
     shire, shrievalty, soke, sovereign nation, stake, state, sultanate,
     superpower, territory, toparchia, toparchy, town, township,
     village, wapentake, ward
  
  

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  COUNTY. A district into which a state is divided. 
       2. The United States are generally divided into counties; counties are 
  divided into townships or towns. 
       3. In Pennsylvania the division of the province into three Counties, 
  viz. Philadelphia, Bucks and Chester, was one of the earliest acts of 
  William Penn, the original proprietary. There is no printed record of this 
  division, or of the original boundaries of these counties. Proud says it was 
  made about the year 1682. Proud's Hist. vol. 1 p. 234 vol. 2, p. 258. 
       4. In some states, as Illinois; 1 Breese, R. 115; a county is 
  considered as a corporation, in others it is only a quasi corporation. 16 
  Mass. R. 87; 2 Mass. R. 644 7 Mass. R. 461; 1 Greenl. R. 125; 3 Greenl. R. 
  131; 9 Greenl. R. 88; 8 John. R. 385; 3 Munf. R. 102. Frequent difficulties 
  arise on the division of a county. On this subject, see 16 Mass. R. 86 6 J. 
  J. Marsh. 147; 4 Halst. R. 357; 5 Watts, R. 87 1 Cowen, R. 550; 6 Cowen, R. 
  642; Cowen, R. 640; 4 Yeates, R. 399 10 Mass. Rep. 290; 11 Mass. Rep. 339. 
       5. In the English law this word signifies the same as shire, county 
  being derived from the French and shire from the Saxon. Both these words 
  signify a circuit or portion of the realm, into which the whole land is 
  divided, for the better government thereof, and the more easy administration 
  of justice. There is no part of England that is not within some county, and 
  the shire-reve, (sheriff) originally a yearly officer, was the governor of 
  the county. Four of the counties of England, viz. Lancaster, Chester, Durham 
  and Ely, were called counties Palatine, which were jurisdictions of a 
  peculiar nature, and held by, especial charter from the king. See stat. 27 
  H. VIII. c. 25. 
  
  

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