Webster 1828 Edition



[Gr. the earth, and to write, to describe.]
Properly, a description of the earth or terrestrial globe, particularly of the divisions of its surface,natural and artificial, and of the position of the several countries, kingdoms, states,cities, &c. As a science, geography includes the doctrine or knowledge of the astronomical circles or divisions of the sphere, by which the relative position of places on the globe may be ascertained,and usually treatises of geography contain some account of the inhabitants of the earth, of their government, manners, &c., and an account of the principal animals, plants and minerals.
A book containing a description of the earth.

Definition 2024






geography (countable and uncountable, plural geographies)

  1. A description of the earth: a treatise or textbook on geography; (archaic) an atlas or gazetteer.
  2. The study of the physical properties of the earth, including how humans affect and are affected by them.
  3. Terrain: the physical properties of a region of the earth.
    • 1973, Helen Miller Bailey, Abraham Phineas Nasatir, Latin America: the development of its civilization
      The geography of the Andes approaches never made transportation easy; routes to Bogota, Quito, La Paz, and Cuzco were so precipitous as to slow down the development of those Spanish cities in the interior.
  4. Any subject considered in terms of its physical distribution.
  5. (astronomy) Similar books, studies, or regions concerning other planets.
  6. The physical arrangement of any place, particularly (Britain, slang) a house.
  7. (chiefly upper-class Britain, euphemistic) The lavatory: a room used for urination and defecation.
    • 1967 December 21, The Listener, p. 802:
      The Business Man Jocular: ‘I say, where's the geography, old son?’
  8. (figuratively) The relative arrangement of the parts of anything.
  9. (chiefly business and marketing) A territory: a geographical area as a field of business or market sector.


  • (upper-class British slang for lavatory): loo; see also Wikisaurus:bathroom

Derived terms



  • Oxford English Dictionary. "geography, n."

See also