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[poh-lis] /ˈpoʊ lɪs/

noun, plural poleis
[poh-lahys] /ˈpoʊ laɪs/ (Show IPA)
an ancient Greek city-state.
a combining form, meaning “city,” appearing in loanwords from Greek (metropolis), and used in the formation of placenames (Annapolis).
noun (pl) poleis (ˈpɒlaɪs)
an ancient Greek city-state
(Scot & Irish) the police or a police officer

“ancient Greek city-state,” 1894, from Greek polis “city, one’s city; the state, citizens,” from PIE *pele- “citadel, enclosed space, often on high ground” (cf. Sanskrit pur, puram “city, citadel,” Lithuanian pilis “fortress”).

word-forming element meaning “City,” from Greek polis “city” (see polis).


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