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.
Cite This Source Link To Provinces
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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Example sentences
Fear of missing their targets led some provinces to severely ration power in
  the latter half of last year.
They also struggle with factories, both legal and illegal in the surrounding
  environments and surrounding provinces.
The rebels had ravaged sixteen of the eighteen provinces, and had destroyed six
  hundred cities.
And keep these limbs, her provinces, from dissolution.
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