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A province is almost always an
administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are generic names for geographical areas into which a particular ...

administrative division
within a
country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized social ...

country
or
state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in Columbia, South Carolina, Un ...
. The term derives from the
ancient Roman In historiography, ancient Rome is Roman people, Roman civilization from the founding of the Italian city of Rome in the 8th century BC to the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, encompassing the Roman Kingdom (753 BC ...
''
provincia A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are gen ...
'', which was the major territorial and administrative unit of the
Roman Empire's
Roman Empire's
territorial possessions outside
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...

Italy
. The term ''province'' has since been adopted by many countries. In some countries with no actual provinces, "the provinces" is a metaphorical term meaning "outside the
capital city A capital or capital city is the municipality holding primary status in a Department (country subdivision), department, country, Constituent state, state, province, or other administrative region, usually as its seat of the government. A capita ...
". While some provinces were produced artificially by
colonial powers
colonial powers
, others were formed around local groups with their own ethnic identities. Many have their own powers independent of central or
federal Federal or foederal (archaic) may refer to: Politics General *Federal monarchy, a federation of monarchies *Federation, or ''Federal state'' (federal system), a type of government characterized by both a central (federal) government and states or ...

federal
authority, especially in Canada. In other countries, like
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...
or
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...
, provinces are the creation of central government, with very little autonomy.


Etymology

The
English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the World language, leading lan ...

English
word ''province'' is attested since about 1330 and derives from the 13th-century
Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular o ...
, which itself comes from the
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it became ...

Latin
word , which referred to the sphere of authority of a
magistrate The term magistrate is used in a variety of systems of governments and laws to refer to a civilian officer who administers the law. In ancient Rome In historiography Historiography is the study of the methods of historian ( 484– ...
, in particular, to a foreign territory. A
popular etymology A false etymology (fake etymology, popular etymology, etymythology, pseudo-etymology, or par(a)etymology) is a popular but false belief about the origin or derivation of a specific word. It is sometimes called a folk etymology Folk etymology (al ...
is from
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it became ...

Latin
("on behalf of") and ("to triumph" or "to take control of"). Thus a "province" would be a territory or function that a
Roman magistrate The Roman magistrates were elected officials in Ancient Rome In historiography Historiography is the study of the methods of historian ( 484– 425 BC) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC and one of the earliest hi ...
held control of on behalf of his government. In fact, the word ''province'' is an ancient term from public law, which means: "office belonging to a magistrate". This agrees with the Latin term's earlier usage as a generic term for a jurisdiction under
Roman law Roman law is the law, legal system of ancient Rome, including the legal developments spanning over a thousand years of jurisprudence, from the Twelve Tables (c. 449 BC), to the ''Corpus Juris Civilis'' (AD 529) ordered by Eastern Roman emperor J ...
.


History and culture

In
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...

France
, the expression still means "outside the
Paris Paris () is the Capital city, capital and List of communes in France with over 20,000 inhabitants, most populous city of France, with an estimated population of 2,175,601 residents , in an area of more than . Since the 17th century, Paris ha ...

Paris
region". Equivalent expressions are used in
Peru , , image_flag = Flag_of_Peru.svg , image_coat = Escudo_nacional_del_Perú.svg , other_symbol = Great Seal of the State , other_symbol_type = Seal (device), National seal , national_mott ...

Peru
(, "outside the city of
Lima Lima ( ; ) is the capital and the largest city of Peru , , image_flag = Flag_of_Peru.svg , image_coat = Escudo_nacional_del_Perú.svg , other_symbol = Great Seal of the State , other_symbol_t ...

Lima
"),
Mexico Mexico, officially the United Mexican States, is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organi ...

Mexico
(, "lands outside
Mexico City Mexico City ( es, link=no, Ciudad de México, ; abbreviated as CDMX; nah, Āltepētl Mēxihco) is the capital city, capital and largest city of Mexico, as well as the List of North American cities by population, most populous city in North Americ ...

Mexico City
"),
Romania Romania ( ; ro, România ) is a country at the crossroads of Central Central is an adjective usually referring to being in the center (disambiguation), center of some place or (mathematical) object. Central may also refer to: Directions ...

Romania
(, "outside the
Bucharest Bucharest ( , ; ro, București ) is the capital and largest city of Romania Romania ( ; ro, România ) is a country at the crossroads of Central Central is an adjective usually referring to being in the center (disambiguation), cente ...

Bucharest
region"),
Poland Poland, officially the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 Voivodeships of Poland, administrative provinces, covering an area of , and has a largely Temperate climate, temperate seasonal cli ...

Poland
(, "provincial"),
Bulgaria Bulgaria (; bg, България, Bǎlgariya), officially the Republic of Bulgaria ( bg, Република България, links=no, Republika Bǎlgariya, ), is a country in Southeast Europe. It is bordered by Romania to the north, Serbia ...

Bulgaria
(, , "in the provinces"; , , "provincial") and the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
(, "from outside
Metro Manila Metropolitan Manila (often shortened as Metro Manila; fil, Kalakhang Maynila), officially the National Capital Region (NCR; fil, Pambansang Punong Rehiyon), is the seat of government The seat of government is (as defined by ''Brewer's Po ...

Metro Manila
", , "in the provinces", or "in the countryside"). Similarly, in Australia "provincial" refers to parts of a state outside of the state capital. Before the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a spanning and in the and the , and s. Its ...

French Revolution
, France comprised a variety of jurisdictions (built around the early Capetian royal
demesne A demesne ( ) or domain was all the land retained and managed by a lord of the manor Lord of the manor is a title that, in Anglo-Saxon England Anglo-Saxon England or Early Medieval England, existing from the 5th to the 11th centuries f ...
), some being considered "provinces", though the term was also used colloquially for territories as small as a
manor Manor may refer to: Land tenure *Manor, the land belonging to the Lord of the manor under manorialism in parts of medieval Europe, notably England *Manor house, the main residence of the lord of the manor *Lord of the manor, the landholder of a ma ...
(). Most commonly referred to as "provinces", however, were the , generally former medieval feudal principalities, or agglomerations of such. Today the expression is regularly replaced in the media by the more politically correct , now being the term officially used for the secondary level of government. In
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...

Italy
, generally means "outside the biggest regional capitals" (like
Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Lazio, Italy).svg , map_caption = The te ...

Rome
,
Milan Milan (, , Milanese: ; it, Milano ) is a city in northern Italy, capital of Lombardy, and the List of cities in Italy, second-most populous city proper in Italy after Rome. The city proper has a population of about 1.4 million, while its ...

Milan
,
Naples Naples (; it, Napoli ; nap, Napule ), from grc, Νεάπολις, Neápolis, lit=new city. is the regional capital of and the third-largest city of , after and , with a population of 967,069 within the city's administrative limits as of ...

Naples
, etc.). For the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
use of the word is often pejorative, assuming a
stereotype Police officers buying doughnuts and coffee, an example of perceived stereotypical behavior in North America. Social psychology Social psychology is the Science, scientific study of how the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of individu ...
of the denizens of the provinces to be less culturally aware than those in the capital. The historic European provinces—built up of many small regions, called by the French and "
cantons A canton is a type of administrative division of a country. In general, cantons are relatively small in terms of area and population when compared with other administrative divisions such as county, counties, Department (administrative division), ...
" by the Swiss, each with a local cultural identity and focused upon a
market town A market town is a European settlement that obtained by custom or royal charter, in the Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and p ...
—have been depicted by
Fernand Braudel Fernand Braudel (; 24 August 1902 – 27 November 1985) was a French historian and a leader of the Annales School. His scholarship focused on three main projects: ''The Mediterranean'' (1923–49, then 1949–66), ''Civilization and Capitalism' ...
as the optimum-size political unit in pre-industrial
Early Modern Europe Early modern Europe, also referred to as the post-medieval period, is the period of European history The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past ...
. He asks, "Was the province not its inhabitants' true '
fatherland A homeland is the concept of the place where a cultural, national, or racial identity had formed. The definition can also mean simply one's country of birth. When used as a proper noun A proper noun is a noun A noun (from Latin ''nōmen' ...

fatherland
'?" Even centrally-organized France, an early
nation-state A nation state is a political unit where the state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newsp ...
, could collapse into autonomous provincial worlds under pressure, as during the sustained crisis of the
French Wars of Religion The French Wars of Religion were a prolonged period of civil war, war and popular unrest between Catholic Church, Catholics and Huguenots (Calvinist, Reformed/Calvinist Protestants) in the Kingdom of France between 1562 and 1598. It is estimate ...
(1562–98). The British colonies in North America were often named provinces. Most (but not all) of the
thirteen colonies The Thirteen Colonies, also known as the Thirteen British Colonies or the Thirteen American Colonies, were a group of Kingdom of Great Britain, British colonies on the Atlantic coast of North America. Founded in the 17th and 18th centuries, th ...
that eventually formed the United States were called provinces. All declared themselves "states" when they became independent. The
Connecticut Colony The Connecticut Colony or Colony of Connecticut, originally known as the Connecticut River Colony or simply the River Colony, was an English colony in New England which became the state of Connecticut. It was organized on March 3, 1636 as a settl ...
, the
Delaware Colony Delaware Colony in the North American Middle Colonies consisted of land on the west bank of the Delaware River The Delaware River is a major river on the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic coast of the United States. It drains an area of in four U.S. ...
,
Rhode Island Rhode Island (, like ''road''), officially the State of Rhode Island, is a state in the New England New England is a region comprising six states in the Northeastern United States The Northeastern United States (also referred to as ...
and the
Colony of Virginia , legislature = House of Burgesses (1619–1776) , today = , demonym = , area_km2=, area_rank=, GDP_PPP=, GDP_PPP_year=, HDI=, HDI_year= The Colony of Virginia, chartered in 1606 and settled in 1607, was ...
never used the title "province". The British colonies further north, which remained loyal to Britain and later confederated to form the original
Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, ...

Canada
, retained the title of "province" and are still known as such to the present day. To 19th- and 20th-century historians, in Europe,
centralized government#REDIRECT Centralized government A centralized government (also united government) is one in which both executive and legislative power is concentrated centrally at the higher level as opposed to it being more distributed at various lower level g ...
was a sign of modernity and political maturity. In the late 20th century, as the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the wester ...

European Union
drew
nation-state A nation state is a political unit where the state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newsp ...
s closer together, centripetal forces seemed simultaneously to move countries toward more flexible systems of more localized, provincial governing entities under the overall European Union umbrella.
Spain , image_flag = Bandera de España.svg , image_coat = Escudo de España (mazonado).svg , national_motto = , national_anthem = , image_map = , map_caption = , image_map2 ...

Spain
after
Francisco Franco Francisco Franco Bahamonde (; 4 December 1892 – 20 November 1975) was a Spanish general who led the Nationalist forces in overthrowing the Second Spanish Republic The Spanish Republic ( es, link=no, República Española), commonly ...

Francisco Franco
has been a "State of Autonomies", formally unitary but in fact functioning as a federation of
Autonomous Communities In Spain, an autonomous community ( es, comunidad autónoma) is a first-level political divisions of Spain, political and administrative division, created in accordance with the Spanish Constitution of 1978, Spanish constitution of 1978, with the ...

Autonomous Communities
, each exercising different powers. (See
Politics of Spain The politics of Spain takes place under the framework established by the Spanish Constitution of 1978, Constitution of 1978. Spain is established as a social and democracy, democratic sovereign countryFirst article. wherein the Popular sovereign ...
.) While
Serbia Serbia (, ; Serbian Serbian may refer to: * someone or something related to Serbia, a country in Southeastern Europe * someone or something related to the Serbs, a South Slavic people * in both meanings, depending on the context, it may ref ...

Serbia
, the rump of former
Yugoslavia Yugoslavia (; sh, Jugoslavija / ; sl, Jugoslavija ; mk, Југославија ;; rup, Iugoslavia; hu, Jugoszlávia; Pannonian Rusyn Image:Novi Sad mayor office.jpg, 250px, Mayor office written in four official languages used in the ...

Yugoslavia
, fought the separatists in the province of
Kosovo Kosovo, or ; sr-Cyrl, Косово officially the Republic of Kosovo,; sr, / is a partially recognised state in Southeast Europe Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe () is a geographical subregion A subregion is a part of a ...

Kosovo
, the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
, under the political principle of "
devolution Devolution is the statutory A statute is a formal written enactment of a legislature, legislative authority that governs the legal entities of a city, State (polity), state, or country by way of consent. Typically, statutes command or p ...
", produced (1998) local
parliament In modern politics and history, a parliament is a legislative A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of ...

parliament
s in
Scotland Scotland ( sco, Scotland, gd, Alba Alba (Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic ( gd, Gàidhlig or Scots Gaelic, sometimes referred to simply as Gaelic) is a Goidelic language (in the Celtic languages, Celtic branch of the Indo-European ...

Scotland
,
Wales Wales ( cy, Cymru ) is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It is bordered by England to the Wales–England border, east, the Irish Sea to the north and west, and the Bristol Channel to the south. It ...

Wales
and
Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, label=Ulster-ScotsUlster Scots, also known as Scotch-Irish, may refer to: * Ulster Scots people The Ulster Scots (Ulster-Scots The Ulster Scots (Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster- ...

Northern Ireland
. In
ancient India According to consensus in modern genetics, anatomically modern humans first arrived on the Indian subcontinent from Africa between 73,000 and 55,000 years ago. Quote: "Y-Chromosome and Mt-DNA data support the colonization of South Asia by mod ...

ancient India
, unlike the
Mauryas The Maurya Empire was a geographically extensive Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age system, three-age division of the prehistory and protohistory of Homo sapiens, humanity. It was preceded by the Bronze Age and the ...
, the
Gupta Empire The Gupta Empire was an ancient Indian empire which existed from the early 4th century CE to late 6th century CE. At its zenith, from approximately 319 to 467 CE, it covered much of the Indian subcontinent. This period is considered as the Go ...

Gupta Empire
gave local areas a great deal of independence and divided the empire into 26 large provinces, styled as Bhukti, Pradesha and Bhoga.


Legal aspects

In many
federation A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, ...

federation
s and
confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty, confederations of states tend to be established for dealing with critical issu ...
s, the province or state is not clearly subordinate to the national or central government. Rather, it is considered to be
sovereign Sovereign is a title which can be applied to the highest leader in various categories. The word is borrowed from Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descende ...
in regard to its particular set of constitutional functions. The central- and provincial-government functions, or areas of jurisdiction, are identified in a
constitution A constitution is an aggregate of fundamental principles A principle is a proposition or value that is a guide for behavior or evaluation. In law, it is a rule Rule or ruling may refer to: Human activity * The exercise of political ...

constitution
. Those that are not specifically identified are called "residual powers." In a decentralized federal system (such as the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
and
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, sma ...

Australia
) these residual powers lie at the provincial or state level, whereas in a centralized federal system (such as
Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, ...

Canada
) they are retained at the federal level. Some of the
enumerated powerThe enumerated powers (also called expressed powers, explicit powers or delegated powers) of the United States Congress The United States Congress or U.S. Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States ...
s can be quite important. For example,
Canadian provinces The provinces and territories of Canada are sub-national divisions within the geographical areas of Canada under the jurisdiction of the Constitution of Canada, Canadian Constitution. In the 1867 Canadian Confederation, three provinces of Britis ...
are sovereign in regard to such important matters as
property Property is a system of rights that gives people legal control of valuable things, and also refers to the valuable things themselves. Depending on the nature of the property, an owner of property may have the right to consume, alter, share, r ...
,
civil rights Civil and political rights are a class of rights Rights are legal Law is a system of rules created and law enforcement, enforced through social or governmental institutions to regulate behavior,Robertson, ''Crimes against humanity'', ...
,
education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, beliefs, habits, and personal development. Educational methods include teaching, training, storytelling, discussion ...

education
,
social welfare Welfare (or commonly, social welfare) is a type of government support intended to ensure that members of a society can meet basic human needs Maslow's hierarchy of needs is an idea in psychology Psychology is the science of mind and ...
and
medical services Health care, health-care, or healthcare is the maintenance or improvement of health via the preventive healthcare, prevention, diagnosis, therapy, treatment, recovery, or cure of disease, illness, injury, and other disability, physical and mental ...
. The growth of the modern
welfare state The welfare state is a form of government in which the state (or a well-established network of social institutions) protects and promotes the economic and social well-being of its citizens, based upon the principles of equal opportunity Equal o ...
has resulted in these functions, assigned to the provinces, becoming more important compared to those assigned to the federal government and thus provincial governments have become more important than the
Fathers of Confederation The Fathers of Confederation are the 36 people who attended at least one of the Charlottetown Conference of 1864 (23 attendees), the Quebec Conference, 1864, Quebec Conference of 1864 (33 attendees), and the London Conference of 1866 (16 attende ...
originally intended. Canada's status as a federation of provinces under the
Dominion The term dominion was used to refer to one of several self-governing nations of the British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other D ...

Dominion
of the British Empire rather than an independent country also had certain legal implications. Provinces could appeal court rulings over the heads of the
Supreme Court of Canada Supreme may refer to: * Supreme (brand), a clothing brand based in New York * Supreme (comics), a comic book superhero * Supreme (cookery), a term used in cookery * Supreme (film), ''Supreme'' (film), a 2016 Telugu film * Supreme (producer), hip-h ...

Supreme Court of Canada
to the
Judicial Committee of the Privy Council The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (JCPC) is the highest court of appeal An appellate court, commonly called an ''appeals court'', ''court of appeals'' (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), somet ...
in
London London is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowerc ...

London
. As well, provinces could bypass the Supreme Court and go directly to London from any
Provincial Court The provincial and territorial courts in Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Canada, ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic to the Pacific O ...
. The Canadian Supreme Court tended to support the view that the
Canadian Constitution The Constitution of Canada (french: Constitution du Canada) is the supreme law in Canada. It outlines Canada's system of government and the civil and human rights of those who are citizens of Canada and non-citizens in Canada. Its contents ar ...
was intended to create a powerful central government, but the Privy Council in London held a distinctly opposite view that the Constitution provided for stronger provincial powers. This provided an opportunity for
forum shopping Forum shopping is a colloquial Colloquialism or colloquial language is the style (sociolinguistics), linguistic style used for casual (informal) communication. It is the most common functional style of speech, the idiom normally employed in conv ...
for provinces who opposed federal laws. Until appeals from Canada to the Privy Council were abolished in 1949, in legal disputes the provincial governments tended to win powers at the expense of the federal government. In addition, while the Canadian federal government has unlimited taxing power while province governments are restricted to imposing direct taxes, the Canadian government introduced an
income tax An income tax is a tax A tax is a compulsory financial charge or some other type of levy imposed on a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelate ...
during
World War I World War I, often abbreviated as WWI or WW1, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war A world war is "a war engaged in by all or most of the principal nations of the world". The term is usually reserved for ...

World War I
, and since it is a direct tax it also became a major revenue generator for provinces. In most provinces, the federal government now collects income tax for both levels of government and transfers to the provincial governments whatever surcharge they ask for. The
sales tax A sales tax is a tax A tax is a compulsory financial charge or some other type of levy imposed on a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelate ...
also become a major revenue generator for provinces, so in 1991 the Canadian government introduced a
Goods and Services TaxGST may refer to: Taxes * Sales tax, General sales tax * Generation-skipping transfer tax, in the United States * Goods and Services Tax, the name for the value-added tax in several jurisdictions: ** Goods and Services Tax (Australia) ** Goods and ...
(GST) to share the revenues, which proved unpopular both with provincial governments and taxpayers. The Canadian government has tried to harmonize the two levels of sales taxes, but three provinces continue to impose a separate sales tax (British Columbia after harmonizing it, and shortly thereafter de-harmonizing it after it was struck down by a referendum), while the province of Alberta still does not impose a provincial sales tax. The evolution of federations has created an inevitable tug-of-war between concepts of federal supremacy versus states' and provinces' rights. The historic division of responsibility in federal constitutions is inevitably subject to multiple overlaps. For example, when central governments, responsible for
foreign policy ''Foreign Policy'' is an American news publication, founded in 1970 and focused on global affairs, current events, and domestic and international policy. It produces content daily on its website, and in six print issues annually. ''Foreign Poli ...
, enter into international agreements in areas where the state or province is sovereign, such as the environment or health standards, agreements made at the national level can create jurisdictional overlap and conflicting laws. This overlap creates the potential for internal disputes that lead to
constitutional amendment A constitutional amendment is a modification of the of a , or other type of . Amendments are often interwoven into the relevant sections of an existing constitution, directly altering the text. Conversely, they can be appended to the constitut ...
s and judicial decisions that alter the balance of powers. Though foreign affairs do not usually fall under a province's or a federal state's competency, some states allow them to legally conduct international relations on their own in matters of their constitutional prerogative and essential interest. Sub-national authorities have a growing interest in paradiplomacy, be it performed under a legal framework or as a trend informally admitted as legitimate by the central authorities. In
unitary state A unitary state is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper ...
s such as
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...

France
and
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
, provinces are subordinate to the national, central government. In theory, the central government can create or abolish provinces within its jurisdiction. On the other hand, although Canada is now considered a
federal state A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity characterized by a union of partially self-governing provinces, states, or other regions under a central federal government (federalism Federalism is a mixed or compou ...

federal state
and not a
confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty, confederations of states tend to be established for dealing with critical issu ...
, in practice it is among the world's more
decentralized Decentralization or decentralisation is the process by which the activities of an organization, particularly those regarding planning and decision making, are distributed or delegated away from a central, authoritative location or group. Concep ...

decentralized
federations. Canadian Confederation and the
Constitution Act, 1867 The ''Constitution Act, 1867'The Constitution Act, 1867'', 30 & 31 Victoria (U.K.), c. 3, http://canlii.ca/t/ldsw retrieved on 2019-03-14. (french: Loi constitutionnelle de 1867, originally enacted as ''The British North America Act, 1867' ...
conferred considerable power on the provincial governments which they often use to pursue their own goals independently of the federal government. In Canada, local governments have been called "creatures of the province" because the authority of a local government derives solely from the provincial government. Provinces can create, merge, and dissolve local governments without the consent of the federal government or the people in the affected locality. Alberta in particular dissolved and merged hundreds of local governments during the 1940s and 1950s as a consequence of the
Great Depression The Great Depression was a severe worldwide economic depression An economic depression is a sustained, long-term downturn in economic activity in one or more economies. It is a more severe economic downturn than a economic recession, recess ...
. Other provinces have arbitrarily merged and annexed independent suburbs to major Canadian cities such as
Toronto Toronto (, ) is the capital city of the Provinces and territories of Canada, Canadian province of Ontario. With a recorded population of 2,731,571 in 2016 in 2016, it is the List of the largest municipalities in Canada by population, most p ...

Toronto
or
Montreal Montreal ( ; officially Montréal, ) is the second-most populous city in Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of . Its extend from the to the and northward into the , covering , making it the world's . Its southern and w ...

Montreal
without the approval of local voters.


Current provinces

Not all first-level political entities are termed "provinces." In
Arab The Arabs (singular Arab ; singular ar, عَرَبِيٌّ, : , Arabic pronunciation: , plural ar, عَرَبٌ, : , Arabic pronunciation: ) are an mainly inhabiting the . In modern usage the term refers to those who originate from an Arab co ...

Arab
countries, the first administrative level of government—called a ''muhafazah''—is usually translated as a "
governorate A governorate is an administrative division of a country. It is headed by a governor. As English-speaking nations tend to call regions administered by governors either State (administrative division), states or provinces, the term ''governorate'' ...
." In
Poland Poland, officially the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 Voivodeships of Poland, administrative provinces, covering an area of , and has a largely Temperate climate, temperate seasonal cli ...

Poland
, the equivalent of "province" is "''
województwo
województwo
''," sometimes rendered in English as "
voivodeship A voivodeship is the area administered by a voivode (Governor) in several countries of central and eastern Europe. Voivodeships have existed since medieval times and the area of extent of voivodeship resembles that of a duchy in western medieva ...
."Also spelled "voivodship," "voi''e''vodship," "voi''e''vod''e''ship". Historically,
New Zealand New Zealand ( mi, Aotearoa ''Aotearoa'' (; commonly pronounced by English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon Engl ...

New Zealand
was divided into
provinces A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are g ...
, each with its own Superintendent and Provincial Council, and with considerable responsibilities conferred on them. However, the colony (as it then was) never developed into a federation; instead, the provinces were abolished in 1876. The old provincial boundaries continue to be used to determine the application of certain
public holiday A public holiday, national holiday, or legal holiday is a holiday A holiday is a day set aside by custom Custom may refer to: Sense: Customary * Convention (norm), a set of agreed, stipulated or generally accepted rules, norms, standards or ...
s. Over the years, when the central Government has created special-purpose agencies at a sub-national level, these have often tended to follow or approximate the old provincial boundaries. Current examples include the 16
Regions In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of the Earth and planets. The first person to use the wor ...

Regions
into which New Zealand is divided, and also the 21 District Health Boards. Sometimes the term ''the provinces'' is used to refer collectively to rural and regional parts of New Zealand, that is, those parts of the country lying outside some or all of the "main centres"—
Auckland Auckland ( mi, Tāmaki Makaurau) is a large metropolitan city in the North Island of New Zealand. The List of New Zealand urban areas by population, most populous urban area in the country, Auckland has an urban population of about It is locate ...

Auckland
,
Wellington Wellington ( mi, Te Whanganui-a-TaraTe Whanganui-a-Tara is the Māori name for Wellington Harbour. The term is also used to refer to the city of Wellington Wellington ( mi, Te Whanganui-a-Tara ) is the capital city of New Zealand. It i ...

Wellington
,
Christchurch Christchurch ( ; mi, Ōtautahi) is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand and the seat of the Canterbury, New Zealand, Canterbury Region. Christchurch lies on the South Island's east coast, just north of Banks Peninsula on Pegas ...

Christchurch
,
HamiltonHamilton may refer to: * Alexander Hamilton (1755–1804), first American Secretary of the Treasury and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States **Hamilton (musical), ''Hamilton'' (musical), a 2015 Broadway musical written by Lin-Manuel Mira ...
and
Dunedin Dunedin ( ; mi, Ōtepoti) is the second-largest city in the South Island The South Island, also officially named , is the larger of the two major in surface area, the other being the smaller but more populous . It is bordered to the nort ...

Dunedin
.


Modern provinces

In many countries, a province is a relatively small non-constituent level of sub-national government, such as a county in the United Kingdom. In China, a province is a sub-national region within a unitary state; this means that a province can be created or abolished by the national people's congress. In some nations, a province (or its equivalent) is a first-level administrative unit of sub-national government—as in the
Netherlands ) , national_anthem = ( en, "William of Nassau") , image_map = EU-Netherlands.svg , map_caption = , image_map2 = BES islands location map.svg , map_caption2 = , image_map3 ...
—and a large constituent autonomous area, as in
Argentina Argentina (), officially the Argentine Republic ( es, link=no, República Argentina), is a country located mostly in the southern half of South America South America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasse ...
,
Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, ...
,
South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. With over 60 million people, it is the world's 23rd-most populous nation and covers an area of . South Africa has three capital citie ...
, and the
Democratic Republic of the Congo The Democratic Republic of the Congo ( french: République démocratique du Congo (RDC) ), also known as Congo-Kinshasa, DR Congo, the DRC, the DROC, or the Congo, and formerly Zaire Zaire (, ), officially the Republic of Zaire (frenc ...
. It can also be a constituent element of a
federation A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, ...

federation
,
confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty, confederations of states tend to be established for dealing with critical issu ...
, or
republic A republic () is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a month ...

republic
. For example, in the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...
, no
state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in Columbia, South Carolina, Un ...
may
secede Secession is the withdrawal of a group from a larger entity, especially a political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, ...
from the
federal Union A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized ...
without the permission of the
federal government A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, ...
. In other nations—such as
Belgium Belgium ( nl, België ; french: Belgique ; german: Belgien ), officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a country in Western Europe Western Europe is the western region of Europe. The region's countries and territories vary depending on cont ...
,
Chile Chile, officially the Republic of Chile, is a country in the western part of South America South America is a entirely in the and mostly in the , with a relatively small portion in the . It can also be described as the southern ...
,
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps The Alps ; german: Alpen ; it, Alpi ; rm, Alps; sl, Alpe ) are the highest ...
,
Peru , , image_flag = Flag_of_Peru.svg , image_coat = Escudo_nacional_del_Perú.svg , other_symbol = Great Seal of the State , other_symbol_type = Seal (device), National seal , national_mott ...

Peru
, the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...
, and
Spain , image_flag = Bandera de España.svg , image_coat = Escudo de España (mazonado).svg , national_motto = , national_anthem = , image_map = , map_caption = , image_map2 ...
—a province is a second-level administrative sub-division of a
region In geography Geography (from Ancient Greek, Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of the Earth and Solar System, planets. The ...
(which is the first-order administrative sub-division of the nation).
Italian Italian may refer to: * Anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Italy ** Italians, an ethnic group or simply a citizen of the Italian Republic ** Italian language, a Romance language *** Regional Italian, regional variants of the ...

Italian
provinces are mainly named after their principal town and comprise several administrative sub-divisions called ''
comuni The (; plural: ) is a Administrative division, local administrative division of Italy, roughly equivalent to a township or municipality. Importance and function The provides essential public services: Civil registry, registry of births a ...
'' (communes). In Chile, they are referred to as '' comunas''. Chile has 15 regions, subdivided into 53 provinces, of which each is run by a governor appointed by the president. Italy has
20 regions
20 regions
, subdivided into 14 metropolitan cities and 96 provinces. Peru has 25 regions, subdivided into 194 provinces. Spain has
17 autonomous communities
17 autonomous communities
and 2 autonomous cities, subdivided into
50 provinces
50 provinces
. The island of
Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel (Great Britain and Ireland), North Channel, the Irish Sea ...

Ireland
is divided into four historic provinces (see
Provinces of Ireland Since pre-historic times, there have been four Provinces of Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by ...

Provinces of Ireland
), each of which is sub-divided into
counties A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposes Chambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, Edinburgh in certain modern nations. The term is derived from the Old French ...

counties
. These provinces are
Connacht Connacht ( ; ga, Connachta or ), or Connaught, is one of the provinces of Ireland Since pre-historic times, there have been four Provinces of Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster-Scots: ) is an island upright=1.15, ...

Connacht
(in the west),
Leinster Leinster ( ; ga, Laighin or ) is one of the provinces of Ireland Since pre-historic times, there have been four Provinces of Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic ...

Leinster
(in the east),
Munster Munster ( gle, an Mhumhain or ) is one of the provinces of Ireland Since pre-historic times, there have been four Provinces of Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster-Scots: ) is an island upright=1.15, Great_Britain.ht ...

Munster
(in the south) and,
Ulster Ulster (; ga, Ulaidh or ''Cúige Uladh'' ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster Scots, Ulstèr or ''Ulster'') is one of the four traditional Irish provinces of Ireland, provinces, in the north of Ireland. It is made up of nine Counties ...

Ulster
(in the north). Nowadays these provinces have little or no administrative function, though they do have
sporting Sporting may refer to: *Sport, recreational games and play *Sporting (neighborhood), in Alexandria, Egypt Sports clubs *AC Sporting, a football club from Beirut, Lebanon *Alexandria Sporting Club, a sports club from Alexandria, Egypt *Real Sporting ...
significance. From the 19th century, the
Portuguese colonies The Portuguese Empire ( pt, Império Português), also known as the Portuguese Overseas (''Ultramar Português'') or the Portuguese Colonial Empire (''Império Colonial Português''), was composed of the overseas Colonialism, colonies, Factory ( ...
were considered overseas provinces of
Portugal Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic ( pt, República Portuguesa, links=yes ), is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who ...

Portugal
. Similarly, some overseas parts of the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
bore the colonial title of "province" (in a more Roman sense), such as the
Province of Canada The Province of Canada (or the United Province of Canada or the United Canadas) (french: link=no, Province du Canada) was a British colony Within the British Empire, a Crown colony or royal colony was a colony In political science, ...
and the
Province of South Australia The Province of South Australia is an ecclesiastical province of the Anglican Church of Australia, the boundaries of which are those of the state of South Australia. The province consists of three dioceses: Anglican Diocese of Adelaide, Adelaide, ...

Province of South Australia
(the latter, to distinguish it from the penal "colonies" elsewhere in
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, sma ...

Australia
). Likewise, prior to the
American Revolution The American Revolution was an ideological and political revolution which occurred in colonial North America between 1765 and 1783. The Americans in the Thirteen Colonies The Thirteen Colonies, also known as the Thirteen British Colo ...
, most of the original
Thirteen Colonies The Thirteen Colonies, also known as the Thirteen British Colonies or the Thirteen American Colonies, were a group of Kingdom of Great Britain, British colonies on the Atlantic coast of North America. Founded in the 17th and 18th centuries, th ...
in
British America British America comprised the colonial territories of the British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, terri ...

British America
were provinces as well, such as the
Province of Georgia The Province of Georgia (also Georgia Colony) was one of the Southern colonies The Southern Colonies within British America British America comprised the colonial territories of the British Empire in America from 1607 to 1783. These c ...
and the
Province of New Hampshire The Province of New Hampshire was a colony of England and later a British province in North America. The name was first given in 1629 to the territory between the Merrimack River, Merrimack and Piscataqua River, Piscataqua rivers on the eastern c ...
.


Canada

The constituent entities of
Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, ...

Canada
are known as provinces. Prior to confederation, the term province was used in reference to several British colonies situated in Canada; such as the colonial
Province of Quebec ) , image_shield=Armoiries du Québec.svg , image_flag=Flag of Quebec.svg , coordinates= , AdmittanceDate=July 1, 1867 , AdmittanceOrder=1st, with New Brunswick ("Hope restored") , image_map = New Brunswick in Canada 2.svg , ...
. In 1791, Quebec split into two separate colonies, the provinces of
Lower Canada The Province of Lower Canada (french: province du Bas-Canada) was a British colony Within the British Empire, a Crown colony or royal colony was a colony In political science, a colony is a territory subject to a form of foreign rule. ...
, and
Upper Canada The Province of Upper Canada (french: link=no, province du Haut-Canada) was a part Part, parts or PART may refer to: People *Armi Pärt Armi Pärt (born 18 June 1991) is an Estonian handballer, playing in French D2 for Massy Essonne H ...
. The two colonies were later merged in 1841 to form the
Province of Canada The Province of Canada (or the United Province of Canada or the United Canadas) (french: link=no, Province du Canada) was a British colony Within the British Empire, a Crown colony or royal colony was a colony In political science, ...
. From its separation from Nova Scotia in the 18th century,
New Brunswick ("Hope restored") , image_map = New Brunswick in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , capital = Fredericton Fredericton (; ) is the capital city of the Canadian provinc ...

New Brunswick
was known as His/Her Majesty's Province of New Brunswick. After Canadian confederation in 1867, the term ''provinces'' continued to be used, in reference to the sub-national governments of Canada. Because Canada is the second-largest country in the world by area, but has only 10 provinces, most Canadian provinces are very large— six of its ten provinces are larger than any country in Europe except
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
, and its largest province
Quebec ) , image_shield=Armoiries du Québec.svg , image_flag=Flag of Quebec.svg , coordinates= , AdmittanceDate=July 1, 1867 , AdmittanceOrder=1st, with New Brunswick ("Hope restored") , image_map = New Brunswick in Canada 2.svg , ...

Quebec
——is almost two and a half times as large as
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...

France
—. Six provinces, including five of the oldest Canadian provinces—
Alberta ("Strong and free") , image_map = Alberta in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , official_lang = English , capital = Edmonton Edmonton ( ) is the capital ...

Alberta
,
Ontario ("Loyal she began, loyal she remains") , Label_map = yes , image_map = Ontario in Canada 2.svg , map_alt = Map showing Ontario's location east/central of Canada. , coordinates = , cap ...

Ontario
,
Quebec ) , image_shield=Armoiries du Québec.svg , image_flag=Flag of Quebec.svg , coordinates= , AdmittanceDate=July 1, 1867 , AdmittanceOrder=1st, with New Brunswick ("Hope restored") , image_map = New Brunswick in Canada 2.svg , ...

Quebec
,
New Brunswick ("Hope restored") , image_map = New Brunswick in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , capital = Fredericton Fredericton (; ) is the capital city of the Canadian provinc ...

New Brunswick
,
Nova Scotia ) , image_map = Nova Scotia in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , official_lang = English (''de facto'') , RegionalLang = French, Scots Gaelic , capital ...

Nova Scotia
and
Prince Edward Island (''The small protected by the great'') , image_map = Prince Edward Island in Canada (special marker) 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , official_lang = English English usually ref ...

Prince Edward Island
—have "counties" as administrative sub-divisions. The actual local government form can vary widely. In New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and in 9 of the 18 counties of Nova Scotia, county government has been abolished and has been superseded by another form of local government. New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island also have parishes within counties. Since the
Canadian Constitution The Constitution of Canada (french: Constitution du Canada) is the supreme law in Canada. It outlines Canada's system of government and the civil and human rights of those who are citizens of Canada and non-citizens in Canada. Its contents ar ...
assigns local government to provincial jurisdiction, the various provinces can create, dissolve, and reorganize local governments freely and they have been described as "creatures of the province". The
Western provinces Western Canada, also referred to as the Western provinces and more commonly known as the West, is a list of regions of Canada, region of Canada that includes the four provinces and territories of Canada, provinces of Alberta, British Columbia, Man ...
have more varied types of administrative sub-divisions than the
Eastern provinces
Eastern provinces
. The province of
British Columbia ( en, Splendour without diminishment) , image_map = British Columbia in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , official_lang = None , Slogan = Beautiful British C ...

British Columbia
has "regional districts" which function as county-equivalents.
Manitoba Manitoba ( ) is a Provinces and territories of Canada, province of Canada at the Centre of Canada, longitudinal centre of the country. It is Canada's Population of Canada by province and territory, fifth-most populous province, with a population o ...

Manitoba
and
Saskatchewan ("From Many Peoples Strength") , image_map = Saskatchewan in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , official_lang = English language, English , capital = Regina, S ...
are divided into rural municipalities.
Alberta ("Strong and free") , image_map = Alberta in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , official_lang = English , capital = Edmonton Edmonton ( ) is the capital ...

Alberta
is also divided into counties, albeit they are officially classified as "municipal districts" by the province, though in regular everyday parlance these entities are referred to as a "county". The province of Alberta has some unique local governance schemes formed in response to local conditions. For instance,
Sherwood Park Sherwood Park is a large hamlet ''The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark'', often shortened to ''Hamlet'' (), is a tragedy written by William Shakespeare sometime between 1599 and 1601. It is Shakespeare's longest play, with 29,551 wo ...

Sherwood Park
is an unincorporated "urban service area" of 65,465 within
Strathcona County Strathcona County is a specialized municipality A specialized municipality is a unique type of municipal status in the Provinces and territories of Canada, Canadian province of Alberta. Alberta's specialized municipalities are unique local gov ...
, which has most of the oil refining capacity in Western Canada;
Fort McMurray Fort McMurray ( ) is an urban service area in the Regional Municipality (RM) of Wood Buffalo in Alberta ("Strong and free") , image_map = Alberta in Canada 2.svg , Label_map = yes , coordinates = , ...
was once a city but dissolved itself and became an "urban service area" of 70,964 people within the Regional Municipality (R.M.) of Wood Buffalo, which has several multibillion-dollar
oil sands Oil sands, tar sands, crude bitumen, or bituminous sands, are a type of unconventional oil, unconventional petroleum deposit. Oil sands are either loose sands or partially consolidated sandstone containing a naturally occurring mixture of s ...
plants; and
Lloydminster Lloydminster is a Canadian city which has the unusual geographic distinction of straddling the provincial border between Alberta and Saskatchewan. The city is incorporated by both provinces as a single city with a single municipal administratio ...
, a city of 31,483 which sits directly astride the provincial border between Alberta and Saskatchewan. Unlike most such cases, Lloydminster is not a pair of twin cities on opposite sides of a border, but is actually incorporated by both provinces as a single city with a single municipal administration. The residents objected to the federal government splitting the city in two when it created the two provinces, so the two provinces reunified it by declaring it to be a single city in two provinces, thereby bypassing the limitations of federal boundaries.


Pakistan

Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...

Pakistan
is administratively divided into four provinces, which are: *
Punjab Punjab (; ; ; ; also as Panjāb or Panj-Āb) is a geopolitical, cultural, and in , specifically in the northern part of the , comprising areas of eastern and . The boundaries of the region are ill-defined and focus on historical accounts. ...
*
Sindh Sindh (; sd, سنڌ; ur, , ; historically romanized as Sind) is one of the four provinces A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, ad ...

Sindh
*
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (; ps, خیبر پښتونخوا; ), often abbreviated as KP or KPK and formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province, is one of the Administrative units of Pakistan, four provinces of Pakistan. It is located in the Geo ...

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
*
Balochistan Balochistan (; bal, بلوچِستان; also romanised as Baluchistan) is an arid A region is arid when it is characterized by a severe lack of available water, to the extent of hindering or preventing the growth and development Development ...

Balochistan
It also has two autonomous territories: *
Azad Jammu and Kashmir Azad Jammu and Kashmir ( ur, , translit=āzād jammū̃ o kaśmīr, translit-std=IAST, ), abbreviated as AJK and colloquially referred to as simply Azad Kashmir, is a region administered by Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in ...
*
Gilgit Baltistan Gilgit (; Shina language, Shina: ; ur, ) is the capital city of Gilgit-Baltistan, Gilgit–Baltistan, Pakistan. The city is located in a broad valley near the confluence of the Gilgit River and Hunza River, and is a major Tourism in Pakistan ...

Gilgit Baltistan


Russia

The term "province" is sometimes used to refer to the historic governorates ('' guberniyas'') of
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
. This terms also refers to the ''provinces'' (), which were introduced as the subdivisions of the governorates in 1719 and existed until 1775. In modern parlance, the term is commonly used to refer to the
oblast An oblast (; ; Cyrillic script, Cyrillic (in most languages, including Russian language, Russian and Ukrainian language, Ukrainian): , Bulgarian language, Bulgarian: ) is a type of administrative division of Belarus, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzs ...
s and
krai A krai or kray (; russian: край, , ''kraya'') is one of the types of federal subjects of modern Russia, and was a type of geographical administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivisio ...

krai
s of Russia.


Polities translated


Historic provinces


Ancient, medieval and feudal

* The
Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn Rhōmaíōn) was the post-Republican Republican can refer to: Political ideology * An advocate of a republic, a type of governme ...

Roman Empire
was divided into provinces ('' provinciae''); this is from which the term originated.
Later Eastern Half
Later Eastern Half
: see
Exarchate An exarchate is any territorial jurisdiction (secular or ecclesiastical) whose ruler is described as an exarch. Administration of the secular Byzantine Empire * Exarchate of Africa * Exarchate of Ravenna Ecclesiastical administration Cat ...
, thema *
Caliphate A caliphate ( ar, خِلَافَة, ) is an Islamic state under the leadership of an Islamic steward with the title of caliph (; ar, خَلِيفَة ', ), a person considered a politico-religious successor to the Islamic prophet Muhammad ...
and subsequent
sultanate This article includes a list of successive Muslim state An Islamic state is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state. In the case of its broad associati ...
s: see
Emirate An emirate is a territory ruled by an emir Emir (; ar, أمير ' ), sometimes Romanization of Arabic, transliterated amir, amier, or ameer, is a word of Arabic language, Arabic origin that can refer to a male monarch, aristocratic, aristoc ...
*
Khanate A khaganate or khanate was a political entity ruled by a Khan (title), khan, khagan, khatun, or khanum. This political entity was typically found on the Eurasian Steppe and could be equivalent in status to tribe, tribal chiefdom, principality, ...

Khanate
can also mean a province as well as an independent state, as either can be headed by a Khan * Pharaonic
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identi ...

Egypt
: see
nome (Egypt) A nome (, from grc, νομός, ''nomós'', "district") was a territorial division in ancient Egypt. Each nome was ruled by a nomarch ( egy, :wikt:ḥrj-tp, ḥrj tp :wikt:ꜥꜣ, ꜥꜣ Great Chief). The number of nomes changed through the vari ...
* Frankish (Carolingian) 're-founded'
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Romanum Imperium; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town i ...
: see gau and
county A county is a geographical region In geography, regions are areas that are broadly divided by physical characteristics (physical geography), human impact characteristics (human geography), and the interaction of humanity and the environment ...
* In the
Habsburg The House of Habsburg (), alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English (german: Haus Habsburg ; es, Casa de Habsburgo ; hu, Habsburg-család), also known as the House of Austria (german: link=no, Haus Österreich; es, link=no, Casa de Austria), ...

Habsburg
territories, the traditional provinces are partly expressed in the ''Länder'' of 19th-century
Austria-Hungary Austria-Hungary, often referred to as the Austro-Hungarian Empire or the Dual Monarchy, was a constitutional monarchy A constitutional monarchy, parliamentary monarchy, or democratic monarchy is a form of monarchy in which the monarch exe ...

Austria-Hungary
. *
Mughal Empire The Mughal, Mogul, or Moghul Empire was an early modern The early modern period of modern history Human history, or world history, is the narrative of Human, humanity's past. It is understood through archaeology, anthropology, ge ...
:
subah A Subah was the term for a province (State) in the Mughal Empire. The word is derived from Arabic and Persian language, Persian. The governor/ruler of a ''Subah'' was known as a ''subahdar'' (sometimes also referred to as a "''Subeh''"), which lat ...
* The provinces of the Ottoman Empire had various types of governors (generally a
pasha Pasha or Paşa ( ota, پاشا; tr, paşa; sq, Pashë; ar, باشا), in older works sometimes anglicized as bashaw, was a higher rank in the Ottoman Ottoman is the Turkish spelling of the Arabic masculine given name Uthman (name), Uthman (Ar ...

pasha
), but mostly styled vali, hence the predominant term ''
vilayet A vilayet (; french: vilaïet or () * bg, област (); or () * el, επαρχία (), eparchy; or (), nomarchy * lad, provinsiya or , group=note) was a first-order administrative division, or province of the later Ottoman Empire, intr ...

vilayet
'', generally subdivided (often in
bey "Bey" ( ota, بك “''Beik''”, chg, بك “''Bek''”, tk, beg, uz, bek, kz, бек, tt, bäk, sq, beu, bs, beg, fa, بیگ “''Beigh''” or “''Beg''”, tg, бе, ar, بيه “''Beyeh''”) is a Turkic title for a chieftai ...
liks or
sanjak Sanjaks (liwāʾ) (plural form: alwiyāʾ) * Armenian language, Armenian: նահանգ (''nahang''; meaning "province") * Bulgarian language, Bulgarian: окръг (''okrǔg''; meaning "county", "province", or "region") * el, Διοίκησι ...
s), sometimes grouped under a governor-general (styled
beylerbey ''Beylerbey'' or ''Beylerbeyi'' ( ota, بكلربكی; "Bey "Bey" ( ota, بك “''Beik''”, chg, بك “''Bek''”, tk, beg, uz, bek, kz, бек, tt, bäk, sq, beu, bs, beg, fa, بیگ “''Beigh''” or “''Beg''”, tg, бе, ...
). * Achaemenid
Persia Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia. It is bordered to the northwest by Armenia and Azerbaijan, to the north by the Caspian Sea, to the northeast by Tu ...

Persia
(and probably before in Media, again after conquest and further extension by Alexander the Great, and in the larger Hellenistic
successor state Successor is someone who, or something which succeeds or comes after (see success and succession) Film and TV * ''The Successor'' (film), a 1996 film including Laura Girling * ''The Successor'' (TV program), a 2007 Israeli television program Mu ...
s: see
satrapy Satraps () were the governors of the provinces of the ancient Medes, Median and Achaemenid Empires and in several of their successors, such as in the Sasanian Empire and the Hellenistic period, Hellenistic empires. The satrap served as viceroy to ...
* In the Tartar
Khanate of Kazan The Khanate of Kazan ( tt, Qazan Xanlığı; Russian language, Russian: Казанское ханство, Romanization of Russian, Romanization: ''Kazanskoye khanstvo'') was a medieval Tatar Turkic state that occupied the territory of former Vo ...
: the five daruğa ('direction')


Colonial and early modern

*
Spanish empire The Spanish Empire ( es, link=no, Imperio Español), also known as the Hispanic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Hispánica) or the Catholic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Católica) during the Early Modern period, was a colonial empire ...

Spanish empire
, at several echelons: **
viceroyalty A viceroyalty was an entity headed by a viceroy. It dates back to the Spanish colonization of the Americas in the 16th century. France *Viceroyalty of New France Portuguese Empire In the scope of the Portuguese Empire, the term "Viceroyalty of ...
above ** intendencia * The former
Republic of the Seven United Provinces The United Provinces of the Netherlands, or United Provinces (officially the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands), commonly referred to in historiography as the Dutch Republic, was a federal republic which existed from 1588 (during the D ...
(
The Netherlands ) , national_anthem = ( en, "William of Nassau") , image_map = EU-Netherlands.svg , map_caption = , image_map2 = BES islands location map.svg , map_caption2 = , image_map3 ...
) *
British colonies Within the British Empire, a Crown colony or royal colony was a colony In political science, a colony is a territory subject to a form of foreign rule. Though dominated by the foreign colonizers, colonies remain separate from the administ ...

British colonies
: ** American
Southern Colonies The Southern Colonies within British America British America comprised the colonial territories of the British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandat ...
***
Province of Carolina Carolina was a province of Kingdom of England, England (1663–1707) and Kingdom of Great Britain, Great Britain (1707–1712) that existed in North America and the Caribbean from 1663 until partitioned into Province of North Carolina, North an ...
(1629–1712) ***
Province of North Carolina North Carolina was a province of Kingdom of Great Britain, Great Britain that existed in North America from 1712(p. 80) to 1776. It was one of the five Southern Colonies, Southern colonies and one of the Thirteen Colonies, thirteen America ...
(1712–1776) ***
Province of South Carolina South Carolina, originally known as Clarendon Province, was a province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subna ...
(1712–1776) ***
Province of Maryland The Province of Maryland was an Kingdom of England, English and later British Empire, British colony in North America that existed from 1632 until 1776, when it joined the other twelve of the Thirteen Colonies in American Revolution, rebellion aga ...
(1632–1776) ***
Province of Georgia The Province of Georgia (also Georgia Colony) was one of the Southern colonies The Southern Colonies within British America British America comprised the colonial territories of the British Empire in America from 1607 to 1783. These c ...
(1732–1777) ** American
Middle Colonies The Middle Colonies were a subset of the Thirteen Colonies The Thirteen Colonies, also known as the Thirteen British Colonies or the Thirteen American Colonies, were a group of Kingdom of Great Britain, British colonies on the Atlantic coast ...
***
Province of New Jersey The Province of New Jersey was one of the Middle Colonies The Middle Colonies were a subset of the Thirteen Colonies The Thirteen Colonies, also known as the Thirteen British Colonies or the Thirteen American Colonies, were a group of King ...
(1664–1776) ***
Province of New York The Province of New York (1664–1776) was a British proprietary colony A proprietary colony was a type of English colony mostly in North America North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all w ...
(1664–1783) ***
Province of Pennsylvania The Province of Pennsylvania, also known as the Pennsylvania Colony, was a British North American colony founded by William Penn William Penn (14 October 1644 – 30 July 1718) was an English writer and religious thinker belonging to the R ...
(1681–1783) ** American
New England Colonies The New England Colonies of British America British America comprised the colonial territories of the British Empire in America from 1607 to 1783. These colonies were formally known as British America and the British West Indies before the T ...
***
Province of New Hampshire The Province of New Hampshire was a colony of England and later a British province in North America. The name was first given in 1629 to the territory between the Merrimack River, Merrimack and Piscataqua River, Piscataqua rivers on the eastern c ...
(1680–1686, 1692–1783) ***
Province of Massachusetts Bay The Province of Massachusetts Bay was a colony in British America British America comprised the colonial territories of the British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, L ...
(1692–1776) ***
Province of Maine Image:Wpdms province of maine 1622.png, 300px, thumbnail, The 1622 grant of the Province of Maine is shown outlined in blue. The 1629 division into the Province of New Hampshire (south of the Piscataqua) and Province of Maine (north of the Piscataqu ...
(various dates) **
Canada (New France) The colony of Canada was a French colony From the 16th to the 17th centuries, the First French colonial empire stretched from a total area at its peak in 1680 to over , the second largest empire in the world at the time behind only the Spanis ...
***
Province of Quebec (1763–1791) The Province of Quebec (french: Province de Québec) was a colony in North America North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere. It can also be described as the nor ...
*** Province of Lower Canada (1791–1841) *** Province of Upper Canada (1791–1841) *** United Province of Canada (1841–1867) ** Provinces of India ** Provinces of the Philippines ** Provinces of New Zealand (1841–1876) ** Provinces of Nigeria **
Province of South Australia The Province of South Australia is an ecclesiastical province of the Anglican Church of Australia, the boundaries of which are those of the state of South Australia. The province consists of three dioceses: Anglican Diocese of Adelaide, Adelaide, ...

Province of South Australia
(now an States and territories of Australia, Australian state) * The former provinces of Brazil * The former provinces of France * The former provinces of Ireland * The former provinces of Japan * The provinces of Prussia, a former Germany, German monarchy, kingdom/
republic A republic () is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a month ...

republic
* The provinces of the Republic of New Granada * The former provinces of Sweden * The former United Provinces of Central America * The former United Provinces of South America, United Provinces of the Río de la Plata


See also

* Governor * Region * Provincialism * Regionalism (politics) * Rise: The Vieneo Province


References


External links


Etymology Online
* {{Authority control Provinces, Types of administrative division