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Map showing African colonies (region ruled by another country) in 1913.
A colony (group of organisms living together) of king penguins.


From Latin colōnia (colony), from colōnus (farmer; colonist), from colō (till, cultivate, worship), from earlier *quelō, from Proto-Indo-European *kʷel- (to move; to turn (around)).


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈkɒl.əni/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈkɑləniː/
  • (file)


colony (plural colonies)

  1. Governmental unit created on land of another country owned by colonists from a country
  2. A settlement of emigrants who move to a new place, but remain culturally tied to their place of origin
  3. Region or governmental unit created by another country and generally ruled by another country.
    Bermuda is a crown colony of Great Britain.
  4. (India) An apartment complex.
    Our colony is quite small, but each apartment is large.
  5. A group of people with the same interests or ethnic origin concentrated in a particular geographic area
    The Amana Colonies in Iowa were settled by people from Germany.
  6. A group of organisms of same or different species living together in close association.
    ant colony
    a colony of specialized polyps and medusoids
  7. A collective noun for rabbits.

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Related termsEdit