late 14c., "ancient Roman settlement outside Italy," from Latin colonia "settled land, farm, landed estate," from colonus "husbandman, tenant farmer, settler in new land," from colere "to cultivate, to till; to inhabit; to frequent, practice, respect; tend, guard," from PIE root *kwel- (1) "revolve, move round; sojourn, dwell" (source also of Latin -cola "inhabitant"). Also used by the Romans to translate Greek apoikia "people from home."
In reference to modern situations, "company or body of people who migrate from their native country to cultivate and inhabit a new place while remaining subject to the mother country," attested from 1540s. Meaning "a country or district colonized" is by 1610s.
"pertaining to or belonging to a colony," 1756, from Latin colonia (see colony) + -al (1), or directly from colony on model of baronoinal. In U.S., especially "from or characteristic of America during colonial times" (1776). The noun meaning "inhabitant of a colony, a colonist" is recorded from 1816.
1620s, "to settle with colonists, plant or establish a colony in," from stem of Latin colonus "tiller of the soil, farmer" (see colony). From 1630s as "to migrate to and settle in." It is attested by 1790s in the sense of "to make another place into a national dependency" without regard for settlement there (such as in reference to French activity in Egypt or the British in India), and in this sense it is probably directly from colony.
No principle ought ever to be tolerated or acted upon, that does not proceed on the basis of India being considered as the temporary residence of a great British Establishment, for the good government of the country, upon steady and uniform principles, and of a large British factory, for the beneficial management of its trade, upon rules applicable to the state and manners of the country. [Henry Dundas, Chairman of the East-India Company, letter, April 2, 1800]
Related: Colonized; colonizing.
mid-15c., "place of residence of a person or family," from Old French domicile (14c.) and directly from Latin domicilium, perhaps from domus "house" (from PIE root *dem- "house, household") + colere "to dwell" (see colony). In law, specifically, "that residence from which there is no intention to remove, or a general intention to return" (mid-18c.).
As a verb, "to establish in a fixed residence," it is attested by 1762 (implied in domiciled). Related: Domiciliary.
of birds, "bearing young which are helpless at birth," 1896, from Modern Latin Nidicolae (1894), the zoologists' collective name for the species of birds having the young born in a more or less helpless condition, unable to leave the nest for some time and fed directly by the parent, from Latin nidus "nest" (see nest (n.)) + colere "to inhabit" (see colony). Contrasted to nidifugous birds (1902), whose young are well-developed and leave the nest at birth (from Latin fugere "to flee").