Is there a single term (word or phrase) for city and town, as opposite to village?

In my language there's no distinction between city and town, so having one word for both of them is quite natural (of course there are small towns and big towns - cities).

3 Answers 3


City is probably the word you want. Perhaps municipality in more technical or legal contexts.

A city is a legal entity, and can be large or small. Even a small town will have city limits--that is, the geographic border of the municipality's legal jurisdiction.

The term village is not used often, at least not in American English, and when it is used, it often refers to a part of a city or town, or a neighborhood.

  • I believe village is an official incorporation status in some of NE, just like town and city are.
    – Andy
    Sep 23, 2015 at 21:51

Urban area. That's awfully technical and specialized, also not entirely overlapping the set of cities/towns. In English it's usually written as City/Town and there are no common words to bundle these two.


An urban area, refers to a non-rual area. This would be your cities and your towns, but not villages.

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