[ kol-uh-nahyz ]
/ ˈkɒl əˌnaɪz /

verb (used with object), col·o·nized, col·o·niz·ing.

to establish a colony in; settle: England colonized Australia.
to form a colony of: to colonize laborers in a mining region.

verb (used without object), col·o·nized, col·o·niz·ing.

to form a colony: They went out to Australia to colonize.
to settle in a colony.

Nearby words

  1. colonies,
  2. colonisation,
  3. colonist,
  4. colonitis,
  5. colonization,
  6. colonna,
  7. colonnade,
  8. colonnette,
  9. colonopathy,
  10. colonorrhagia

Also especially British, col·o·nise.

Origin of colonize

First recorded in 1615–25; colon(y) + -ize

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for colonize

British Dictionary definitions for colonize



/ (ˈkɒləˌnaɪz) /


to send colonists to or establish a colony in (an area)
to settle in (an area) as colonists
(tr) to transform (a community) into a colony
(of plants and animals) to become established in (a new environment)
Derived Formscolonizable or colonisable, adjectivecolonization or colonisation, nouncolonizer or coloniser, noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for colonize


Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper