1. That aspect of the appearance of objects and light sources that may be specified as to hue, lightness (brightness), and saturation. 2. That portion of the visible (370–760 nm) electromagnetic spectrum specified as to wavelength, luminosity, and purity. [L.]
- complementary colors pairs of different colors of light that produce white light when combined.
- confusion colors a set of colors (usually of colored wools), cream, buff, pale blue, gray, brown, green, violet, etc., used in tests for c. blindness.
- extrinsic c. c. applied to the external surface of a dental prosthesis.
- intrinsic c. the addition of c. pigment within the material of a dental prosthesis.
- opponent c. pairs of c. that share c. channels in the retina (red-green, blue-yellow, black-white).
- primary c. the three colors of the retinal cone pigments (red, green, blue) that may be combined to match any hue. SYN: simple c..
- pure c. a visual sensation produced by light of a specific wavelength.
- reflected colors those colors seen in light falling upon a pigmented surface.
- saturated c. a c. containing a minimum amount of whiteness.
- simple c. SYN: primary c..
- structural c. a c. created by an optical effect ( e.g., via interference, refraction, or diffraction). Many naturally occurring blues fall in this class. Cf.:natural pigment. SYN: schemochromes.
- tone c. SYN: timbre.

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col·or or chiefly Brit col·our 'kəl-ər n
1 a) a phenomenon of light (as red, brown, pink, or gray) or visual perception that enables one to differentiate otherwise identical objects
b) the aspect of objects and light sources that may be described in terms of hue, lightness, and saturation for objects and hue, brightness, and saturation for light sources
c) a hue as contrasted with black, white, or gray
2) complexion tint esp the tint characteristic of good health
color or chiefly Brit colour adj

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col·or (kulґər) [L. color, colos] 1. a property of a surface or substance resulting from absorption of certain of the incident light rays and reflection of others falling within the range of wavelengths (roughly 370–760 nm) adequate to excite the retinal receptors. 2. radiant energy within the range of adequate chromatic stimuli of the retina, that is, between the infrared and the ultraviolet. 3. a sensory impression of one of the rainbow hues, excited by stimulation of the retinal receptors, notably the cones, by radiant energy of the appropriate wavelength.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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