[ prov-ins ]
See synonyms for: provinceprovinces on

  1. an administrative division or unit of a country.

  2. the provinces,

    • the parts of a country outside of the capital or the largest cities.

    • (in England) all parts of the country outside of London.

  1. a country, territory, district, or region.

  2. a department or branch of learning or activity: the province of mathematics.

  3. sphere or field of activity or authority, as of a person; office, function, or business: Such decisions do not lie within his province.

  4. a major subdivision of British India.

  5. an ecclesiastical territorial division, as that within which an archbishop or a metropolitan exercises jurisdiction.

  6. History/Historical.

    • any of the North American colonies now forming major administrative divisions of Canada.

    • any of certain colonies of Great Britain which are now part of the U.S.

  7. Roman History. a country or territory outside of Italy, brought under the ancient Roman dominion and administered by a governor sent from Rome.

  8. Mining. an individual mineral-producing area.

Origin of province

First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin prōvincia “province, official charge”

Other words for province

Other words from province

  • sub·prov·ince, noun

Words that may be confused with province

Words Nearby province Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use province in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for province


/ (ˈprɒvɪns) /

  1. a territory governed as a unit of a country or empire

  2. a district, territory, or region

  1. the provinces (plural) those parts of a country lying outside the capital and other large cities and regarded as outside the mainstream of sophisticated culture

  2. ecology a subdivision of a region, characterized by a particular fauna and flora

  3. an area or branch of learning, activity, etc

  4. the field or extent of a person's activities or office

  5. RC Church Church of England an ecclesiastical territory, usually consisting of several dioceses, and having an archbishop or metropolitan at its head

  6. a major administrative and territorial subdivision of a religious order

  7. history a region of the Roman Empire outside Italy ruled by a governor from Rome

Origin of province

C14: from Old French, from Latin prōvincia conquered territory

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