from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A major city, especially the chief city of a country or region: Chicago, the metropolis of the Midwest.
- n. A city or an urban area regarded as the center of a specific activity: a great cultural metropolis.
- n. Ecclesiastical The chief see of a metropolitan bishop.
- n. The mother city or country of an overseas colony, especially in ancient Greece.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The mother (founding) polis (city state) of a colony, especially in the Ancient Greek/Hellenistic world.
- n. A large, busy city, especially as the main city in an area or country or as distinguished from surrounding rural areas.
- n. The see of a metropolitan archbishop, ranking above its suffragan diocesan bishops.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The mother city; the chief city of a kingdom, state, or country.
- n. The seat, or see, of the metropolitan, or highest church dignitary.
- n. Any large city.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In ancient Greece, the mother city or parent state of a colony, as Corinth of Corcyra and Syracuse, or Phocæa of Massalia (Marseilles), the colony being independent, but usually maintaining close relations with the metropolis.
- n. Later, a chief city; a seat of government; in the early church, the see or chief city of an ecclesiastical province.
- n. In modern usage: Specifically, the see or seat of a metropolitan bishop.
- n. The capital city or seat of government of a country, as London, Paris, or Washington
- n. A chief city; a city holding the first rank in any respect, within a certain territorial range: as, New York is the commercial metropolis of the United States.
- n. In zoögeog. and botany, the place of most numerous representation of a species by individuals, or of a genus by species; the focus of a generic area. See generic.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. people living in a large densely populated municipality
- n. a large and densely populated urban area; may include several independent administrative districts
Middle English metropol, from Late Latin mētropolis, mother-city, from Greek : mētēr, mētr-, mother; see māter- in Indo-European roots + polis, city; see pelə-3 in Indo-European roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
First attested in Middle English: from Late Latin mētropolis, from Ancient Greek μητρόπολις (mētrópolis, "mother city"), from μήτηρ (mḗtēr, "mother") + πόλις (pólis, "city (state)"). (Wiktionary)