A municipality is usually a single urban administrative division having corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and state laws, to which it is subordinate. It is to be distinguished from the county, which may encompass rural territory and/or numerous small communities such as towns, villages and hamlets. The term municipality may also mean the governing or ruling body of a given municipality. A municipality is a general-purpose administrative subdivision, as opposed to a special-purpose district. The term is derived from French "municipalité" and Latin "municipalis".
The English word "Municipality" derives from the Latin social contract municipium (derived from a word meaning duty holders), referring to the Latin communities that supplied Rome with troops in exchange for their own incorporation into the Roman state (granting Roman citizenship to the inhabitants) while permitting the communities to retain their own local governments (a limited autonomy).
The territory over which a municipality has jurisdiction may encompass
The power of municipalities range from virtual autonomy to complete subordination to the state. Municipalities may have the right to tax individuals and corporations with income tax, property tax, and corporate income tax, but may also receive substantial funding from the state.