country

[ kuhn-tree ]
/ ˈkʌn tri /

noun, plural coun·tries.

adjective

Idioms

    go to the country, British. to dissolve a Parliament that has cast a majority vote disagreeing with the prime minister and cabinet and to call for the election of a new House of Commons.Also appeal to the country.
    put oneself upon the/one's country, Law. to present one's cause formally before a jury.

Origin of country

1200–50; Middle English cuntree < Anglo-French, Old French < Vulgar Latin *(regiō) contrāta terrain opposite the viewer, equivalent to Latin contr(ā) counter3 + -āta, feminine of -ātus -ate1; compare German Gegend region, derivative of gegen against
Related formsin·ter·coun·try, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for countries

British Dictionary definitions for countries

country

/ (ˈkʌntrɪ) /

noun plural -tries

Word Origin for country

C13: from Old French contrée, from Medieval Latin contrāta, literally: that which lies opposite, from Latin contrā opposite
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for countries

country


n.

mid-13c., "district, native land," from Old French contree, from Vulgar Latin *(terra) contrata "(land) lying opposite," or "(land) spread before one," from Latin contra "opposite, against" (see contra-). Sense narrowed 1520s to rural areas, as opposed to cities. Replaced Old English land. As an adjective from late 14c. First record of country-and-western music style is from 1942. Country club first recorded 1886. Country mile "a long way" is from 1915, American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper