an administrative division or unit of a country.
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.
a country, territory, district, or region.
a department or branch of learning or activity: the province of mathematics.
sphere or field of activity or authority, as of a person; office, function, or business: Such decisions do not lie within his province.
a major subdivision of British India.
an ecclesiastical territorial division, as that within which an archbishop or a metropolitan exercises jurisdiction.
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.
Roman History. a country or territory outside of Italy, brought under the ancient Roman dominion and administered by a governor sent from Rome.
Mining. an individual mineral-producing area.

1300–50; Middle English < Middle French < Latin prōvincia province, official charge

subprovince, noun

provenance, province.

5. area. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
province (ˈprɒvɪns)
1.  a territory governed as a unit of a country or empire
2.  a district, territory, or region
3.  (plural) the provinces those parts of a country lying outside the capital and other large cities and regarded as outside the mainstream of sophisticated culture
4.  ecology a subdivision of a region, characterized by a particular fauna and flora
5.  an area or branch of learning, activity, etc
6.  the field or extent of a person's activities or office
7.  RC Church, Church of England an ecclesiastical territory, usually consisting of several dioceses, and having an archbishop or metropolitan at its head
8.  a major administrative and territorial subdivision of a religious order
9.  history a region of the Roman Empire outside Italy ruled by a governor from Rome
[C14: from Old French, from Latin prōvincia conquered territory]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 14c., from O.Fr. province (13c.), from L. provincia "territory under Roman domination," usually explained as pro- "before" + vincere "to conquer" (see victor); but this does not suit the earliest Latin usages.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


in Roman antiquity, a territorial subdivision of the Roman Empire-specifically, the sphere of action and authority of a Roman magistrate who held the imperium, or executive power. The name was at first applied to territories both in Italy and wherever else a Roman official exercised authority in the name of the Roman state. Later the name implied Roman possessions outside Italy from which tribute was required

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
The province also has three private universities, five private colleges, and
  six theological colleges.
Performance issues are primarily the province of the licensing boards, not the
Don't forget to swot up the history of the particular province you're in.
Surely some matters such as religious belief are not the province of science.
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