[ toun ]
/ taʊn /



of, pertaining to, characteristic of, or belonging to a town: town laws; town government; town constable.


Origin of town

before 900; Middle English toun, tun, Old English tūn walled or fenced place, courtyard, farmstead, village; cognate with Old Norse tūn homefield, German Zaun fence, Old Irish dún fort

Related forms

town·less, adjectivein·ter·town, adjective

Synonym study

1. See community. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for go to town


/ (taʊn) /


Derived Forms

townish, adjectivetownless, adjective

Word Origin for town

Old English tūn village; related to Old Saxon, Old Norse tūn, Old High German zūn fence, Old Irish dūn
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

Idioms and Phrases with go to town (1 of 2)

go to town

Also, go to town on.


Do something efficiently and energetically. For example, She really went to town, not only developing and printing the film but making both mat and frame. [Early 1900s]


Act without restraint, overindulge, as in He went to town on the hors d'oeuvres, finishing nearly all of them. [Early 1900s]


Be successful, as in After months of hard work, their business is really going to town. [Mid-1900s]

Idioms and Phrases with go to town (2 of 2)


In addition to the idiom beginning with town

  • town and gown

also see:

  • all over the place (town)
  • ghost town
  • go to town
  • man about town
  • one-horse town
  • only game in town
  • on the town
  • out of town
  • paint the town red
  • talk of the town
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.