Country - county

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These are two words easy to mis-type - and not always easy to spot in proof-reading. Their plural forms (countries and counties) have the same problem.

  • As a political unit, a country is a nation, or state - an organisation qualified to be a member of the United Nations. (As a term of general geographical description, it is an alternative to a 'town'.) The country (with an '-r-') is the area controlled by a national government.
  • In the UK and US at least, a county (without an '-r-') is a smaller administrative unit. The county (for example Yorkshire) is a unit of local government.