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A subdivision of government in most American states. Most of the time, a county is a municipal level below the state government but above a city or township. Counties serve different purposes, depending on the state. In some states, they have courts and a sheriff's office. The chief prosecutor (district attorney) for an area is often employed at the county level. In Oklahoma and many other states, counties have jurisdiction over all land in their boundaries not otherwise incorporated into a city or other municipality. In some states like Maryland, counties have quite broad responsibilities, including the provision of public health services and education. On the other hand, counties have no authority in Rhode Island. In Louisiana, counties are called parishes. In Alaska, they are called boroughs. See also: ABCD Counties.


A political subdivision within a state. It is usually the largest government body within the state.In Louisiana,the equivalent is called a parish.

References in classic literature ?
There's not a man in the county o' South-Wessex that's got grander and nobler skillentons in his family than I.
The situation of Windygates had been skillfully chosen in that part of the county where the fertile lowlands first begin to merge into the mountain region beyond.
for the county of Berks, in a village near the foot of the White Horse range.
A visit to Reading or Abingdon twice a year, at assizes or quarter sessions, which the Squire made on his horse with a pair of saddle-bags containing his wardrobe, a stay of a day or two at some country neighbour's, or an expedition to a county ball or the yeomanry review, made up the sum of the Brown locomotion in most years.
We talked indeed of what should be done; and it was resolved that Alan should keep to the county, biding now here, now there, but coming once in the day to a particular place where I might be able to communicate with him, either in my own person or by messenger.
Crawley would remark with a sigh), and in his day beloved by all the county for the constant drunkenness and hospitality which was maintained at Queen's Crawley.
He speculated in every possible way; he worked mines; bought canal- shares; horsed coaches; took government contracts, and was the busiest man and magistrate of his county.
From Woodland they swung west and south along the county roads to the fruit paradise of Vacaville.
That way led to Lake County and not toward the coast, so Saxon and Billy swung west through the mountains to the valley of the Russian River, coming out at Healdsburg.
of Maysville, Benton, County Ark, in which the latter was slain with a bowie- knife.
Pursuing the light so fortunately hit upon, and finding the concurrent testimony of the whole of Mrs General's acquaintance to be of the pathetic nature already recorded, Mr Dorrit took the trouble of going down to the county of the county-widower to see Mrs General, in whom he found a lady of a quality superior to his highest expectations.
The village of Birlstone is a small and very ancient cluster of half-timbered cottages on the northern border of the county of Sussex.