Basic+ Word of the Day: town

town (noun) LISTEN

A town is a place with houses, shops and other buildings. It is smaller than a city, but bigger than a village.

  • Before I came to New York, I lived in a small town.

We also use the word town to talk about the center of a town or city, where there are shops, restaurants, and other places for entertainment.

  • I met my friends in town and we went shopping.

If someone is in town, in means that they traveled to where you live.

  • My parents are in town for Christmas.

Related words

Downtown has the same meaning as town (meaning 2), but we usually use it in a different way. For example, we say, “I’m going downtown” or “I’m downtown” (and not “I’m in downtown”). We can also use downtown to describe other words. For example, “This is downtown Chicago” (= “This is the center of Ohio.”)

In New York, downtown refers to the south of Manhattan.

In pop culture

Frank Sinatra’s famous song about Chicago is “My Kind of Town.” He says that Chicago “is my kind of town” and the talks about all the things in Chicago that he likes.

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Word of the Day is released Monday through Friday.

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