[ob-last, -lahst; Russian aw-bluhst]
noun, plural oblasts Russian, oblasti [aw-bluh-styee] .
(in Russia and the Soviet Union) an administrative division corresponding to an autonomous province.
region; province.

1885–90; < Russian óblast', Old Russian oblastĭ, equivalent to ob- against, on + vlastĭ authority, power; see volost

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World English Dictionary
oblast (ˈɒblɑːst)
1.  an administrative division of the constituent republics of Russia
2.  an administrative and territorial division in some republics of the former Soviet Union
[from Russian, from Old Slavonic, vlast government]

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Example sentences
The oblast courts also may handle cases in rural areas where no local courts are organized.
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