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1 definition by Bob XXXIX

Self-government; right of a province, state, territory, etc. to be governed with little central government intervention in its affairs.
In a democratic federation of states, such as that in Germany or the United States, states are granted a substantial degree of autonomy in exchange for subservience to the federal government.

Though not necessarily federal as far as its constitution goes, Spain has ceded much autonomy to several regions of the Iberian Peninsula, such as that of Catalonia, Galicia, and Euskadi, due to linguistic and cultural disparities with that of mainstream Castilian culture.
by Bob XXXIX April 18, 2010