A group of emigrants or their descendants who settle in a distant territory but remain subject to or closely associated with the parent country. A territory thus settled. A region politically controlled by a distant country; a dependency. A group of people with the same interests or ethnic origin concentrated in a particular area: the American colony in Paris. The area occupied by such a group. The British colonies that became the original 13 states of the United States. A group of people who have been institutionalized in a relatively remote area: an island penal colony. Ecology A group of the same kind of animals, plants, or one-celled organisms living or growing together. Microbiology A visible growth of microorganisms, usually in a solid or semisolid nutrient medium.