A province is an area that is administered by a governor as the senior officials.

The term is often inadequate translated in German as a province, or because of the duties of the governor's true with the district. The name derived from the English governorate Governorate is linguistically incorrect.


In Russia, the administrative districts were called since Peter the Great, who created the first eight provinces in 1708 until 1815 and from 1864 to 1929 governorates ( Russian: губерния, Gubernija ) whose governors (Russian: губернатор, Gubernator ) were nominated by the Tsar.

With the introduction of the provinces in 1708, the previous corresponding administrative unit Ujesd (Russian Уезд ) was abolished. These were first introduced in 1727 again with the administrative reform of Catherine I..

The first eight Russian provinces from 1708 and the three start-ups from the years 1713 to 1719 are again following table:

Initially (1710 ) the province in Doli ( доли ) were divided, 1719 in 47 provinces, which were divided in turn into districts ( дистрикт ).

At the head of government was the governor. Only the government Ingria and the Azov province were under a Governor-General ( генерал - губернатор ). The provinces were under a Voivode ( воевода ) and the districts of a ground - floor officer or Commissioner ( земский комиссар ).

The governors created a branched administration. They had the power over the administration, police, finance and dishes. They were also supreme commander of the troops in their province.

With the beginning of the reign of Catherine II 40 provinces were created, each with 300,000-400,000 subjects in place of the then existing 20 governorates. At the end of her reign, there were 51 provinces due to the added territories. The provinces were abolished. Two to three provinces were merged into one Namestnitschestwo ( наместничество ).

In 1816, slightly smaller administrative districts were created instead of the large provinces, which were called Oblast ( Область ). Around 1864 led to a the provinces and established including various " Semstwa " ( Zemstvo, Земство ). The latest governorates, which are established in 1873, the government of Bessarabia were (previously a Oblast ), the province Black Sea in 1896 and the government of Chelm in the Vistula area in 1912. The two Russian revolutions of 1917 did not modify the administrative structures at first, only in 1929 abolished the USSR the provinces, and completing the oblasts again, which were divided into Rajons.

In the translation into German is spoken inaccurately instead of government by province, such as in the Russian Baltic provinces, bringing the Baltic countries are meant.


In Germany they used the term governorate:

Both in Germany and in Russia stood to the Governor of the title excellence.

Arabic -speaking Countries

The administrative units in Arabic-speaking countries are called in the German government, in French and in English Governorate Governorate. The Arabic term for this is Arabic محافظة muhāfaza, DMG muḥāfaẓa what is often inaccurately translated as province. This applies, among others, for the following Arabic-speaking countries to:

  • Egypt
  • Bahrain
  • Iraq
  • Yemen
  • Jordan
  • Kuwait
  • Lebanon
  • Palestinian Territories
  • Oman
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Syria
  • Tunisia