Definition of territory noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈterətri//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈterətɔːri//
    (pl. territories)
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  1. 1[countable, uncountable] land that is under the control of a particular country or ruler enemy/disputed/foreign territory occupied territories They have refused to allow UN troops to be stationed in their territory. Wordfinderaggression, arms, army, attack, casualty, conflict, defend, hostile, territory, war CollocationsWar and peaceStarting a war declare/​make/​wage war (on somebody/​something) go to war (against/​with somebody) cause/​spark/​provoke/​foment/​quell unrest incite/​lead/​crush/​suppress a revolt/​rebellion launch/​mount/​carry out a surprise/​terrorist attack prevent/​halt/​represent an escalation of the conflict be torn apart by/​be on the brink of civil war enter/​invade/​occupy somebody’s territory lead/​launch/​resist/​repel an invasionMilitary operations adopt/​develop/​implement/​pursue a military strategy carry out/​execute/​perform military operations/​manoeuvres/(especially US English) maneuvers send/​deploy/​station/​pull back/​withdraw troops go on/​fly/​carry out a reconnaissance/​rescue mission train/​equip/​deploy army/​military/​combat units lead/​launch/​conduct a raid/​a surprise attack/​an (air/​airborne/​amphibious) assault (on somebody) employ/​use guerrilla tactics conduct/​wage biological/​guerrilla warfare fight/​crush/​defeat the rebels/​the insurgency suffer/​inflict a crushing defeat achieve/​win a decisive victory halt/​stop the British/​German/​Russian advance order/​force a retreatFighting join/​serve in the army/​navy/​air force be/​go/​remain/​serve on active duty serve/​complete/​return from a tour of duty be sent to the front (line) attack/​strike/​engage/​defeat/​kill/​destroy the enemy see/​report/​be engaged in heavy fighting call for/​be met with armed resistance come under heavy/​machine-gun/​mortar fire fire a machine-gun/​mortar shells/​rockets (at somebody/​something) shoot a rifle/​a pistol/​bullets/​missiles launch/​fire a cruise/​ballistic/​anti-tank missile use biological/​chemical/​nuclear weapons inflict/​suffer/​sustain heavy losses/​casualties be hit/​killed by enemy/​friendly/​artillery fire become/​be held as a prisoner of warCivilians in war harm/​kill/​target/​protect innocent/​unarmed civilians cause/​avoid/​limit/​minimize civilian casualties/​collateral damage impose/​enforce/​lift a curfew engage in/​be a victim of ethnic cleansing be sent to an internment/​a concentration camp accept/​house/​resettle refugees fleeing from war fear/​threaten military/​violent reprisals commit/​be accused of war crimes/​crimes against humanity/​genocideMaking peace make/​bring/​win/​achieve/​maintain/​promote peace call for/​negotiate/​broker/​declare a ceasefire/​a temporary truce sign a ceasefire agreement call for/​bring/​put an end to hostilities demand/​negotiate/​accept the surrender of somebody/​something establish/​send (in) a peacekeeping force negotiate/​conclude/​ratify/​sign/​accept/​reject/​break/​violate a peace treaty
  2. 2[countable, uncountable] an area that one person, group, animal, etc. considers as their own and defends against others who try to enter it Mating blackbirds will defend their territory against intruders. (figurative) This type of work is uncharted territory for us. (figurative) Legal problems are Andy's territory (= he deals with them). She seems to regard that end of the office as her territory. Each of these gangs has its own territory.
  3. 3[countable, uncountable] an area of a town, country, etc. that somebody has responsibility for in their work or another activity Our representatives cover a very large territory.
  4. 4[uncountable] a particular type of land unexplored territory Wordfindercolonize, discover, explore, pioneer, reconnaissance, scout, settle, terrain, territory, voyage
  5. 5(also Territory) [countable] a country or an area that is part of the US, Australia or Canada but is not a state or province Guam and American Samoa are US territories.
  6. Word Originlate Middle English: from Latin territorium, from terra ‘land’. The word originally denoted the district surrounding and under the jurisdiction of a town or city, specifically a Roman or provincial city.Extra examples The explorers set off to conquer new territories. The male establishes a territory and attracts a female. The parties have been staking out their territory on education. The plane was shot down while overflying enemy territory. The soldiers strayed into hostile territory. The territory had been controlled by Azerbaijan for many years. The territory was never densely settled. The writer is back on home territory with his latest novel. Tired of writing detective novels, she began to explore new territory. Troops were stationed on sovereign German territory. a UN trust territory administered by New Zealand a town in British-occupied territory former French territories Legal problems are Joseph’s territory. The killings had set off widespread rioting in the occupied territories. Their incursion into foreign territory is a clear act of aggression. There are reports of heavy fighting in the disputed territory.Idioms
    come/go with the territory
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    to be a normal and accepted part of a particular job, situation, etc. She has to work late most days, but in her kind of job that goes with the territory.
    on neutral ground/territory
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    in a place that has no connection with either of the people or sides who are meeting and so does not give an advantage to either of them We decided to meet on neutral ground.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: territory