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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Town


TOWN, noun

1. Originally, a walled or fortified place; a collection of houses inclosed with walls, hedges or pickets for safety. Rahab's house was on the town wall. Joshua 2:15.

A town that hath gates and bars. 1 Samuel 23:7.

2. Any collection of houses, larger than a village. In this use the word is very indefinite, and a town may consist of twenty houses, or of twenty thousand.

3. In England, any number of houses to which belongs a regular market, and which is not a city or the see of a bishop.

A town in modern times, is generally without walls, which is the circumstance that usually distinguishes it from a city.

In the United States, the circumstance that distinguishes a town from a city, is generally that a city is incorporated with special privileges, and a town is not. But a city is often called a town

4. The inhabitants of a town The town voted to send two representatives to the legislature, or they voted to lay a tax for repairing the highways.

5. In popular usage, in America, a township; the whole territory within certain limits.

6. In England, the court end of London.

7. The inhabitants of the metropolis.

8. The metropolis. The gentleman lives in town in winter; in summer he lives in the country. The same form of expression is used in regard to other populous towns.

TOWN'-CLERK, noun [town and clerk.] An officer who keeps the records of a town and enters all its official proceedings.