a. Of, relating to, or characteristic of a major city: crowded metropolitan streets; a metropolitan newspaper.
b. Of or constituting a large city or urbanized area, including adjacent suburbs and towns: the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area; a metropolitan county.
2. Of, relating to, or constituting the home territory of an imperial or colonial state.
3. Of or relating to an ecclesiastical metropolitan.
1. A citizen of a metropolis, especially one who displays urbane characteristics, attitudes, and values.
a. In the Western Christian churches, a bishop with provincial powers, with some authority over suffragan bishops.
b. In most Eastern Orthodox churches, a bishop who is head of an ecclesiastical province and ranks next below the patriarch.
c. In the Greek Orthodox church, a bishop ranking next below an archbishop.
[Middle English, of a metropolitan bishop, from Late Latin mētropolītānus, metropolitan, from Greek mētropolītēs, citizen of a metropolis, from mētropolis, mother city; see METROPOLIS.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.