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Color (American English), or colour (Commonwealth English), is the characteristic of visual perception described through color categories, with names such as red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or purple. This perception of color derives from the stimulation of photoreceptor cells (in particular cone cells in the human eye and other vertebrate eyes) by electromagnetic radiation (in the visible spectrum in the case of humans). Color categories and physical specifications of color are associated with objects through the wavelengths of the light that is reflected from them and their intensities. This reflection is governed by the object's physical properties such as light absorption, emission spectra, etc.

By defining a color space, colors can be identified numerically by coordinates, which in 1931 were also named in global agreement with internationally agreed color names like mentioned above (red, orange, etc.) by the International Commission on Illumination. The RGB color space for instance is a color space corresponding to human trichromacy and to the three cone cell types that respond to three bands of light: long wavelengths, peaking near 564–580 nm (red); medium-wavelength, peaking near 534–545 nm (green); and short-wavelength light, near 420–440 nm (blue). There may also be more than three color dimensions in other color spaces, such as in the CMYK color model, wherein one of the dimensions relates to a color's colorfulness).

The photo-receptivity of the "eyes" of other species also varies considerably from that of humans and so results in correspondingly different color perceptions that cannot readily be compared to one another. Honey bees and bumblebees have trichromatic color vision sensitive to ultraviolet but insensitive to red. Papilio butterflies possess six types of photoreceptors and may have pentachromatic vision. The most complex color vision system in the animal kingdom has been found in stomatopods (such as the mantis shrimp) with up to 12 spectral receptor types thought to work as multiple dichromatic units.

The science of color is sometimes called chromatics, colorimetry, or simply color science. It includes the study of the perception of color by the human eye and brain, the origin of color in materials, color theory in art, and the physics of electromagnetic radiation in the visible range (that is, what is commonly referred to simply as light).

Color Media

138 media by topicpage 1 of 2
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
Cotton printing (mordant colors and benzidine colors).
Decoration, derived from the Alhambra; being a portion of the cabinet of the queen of Spain at Aranjuez, by Rafael Contreras.
Baseball players - The hero of a home run, The ladies favorite
Baseball players - Something must be done, Put it there!
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: e. A close affair, hugging the bat
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: c. Judgement
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: c. Bravo! The pet of the nine
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: b. Foul
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: e. Muff
Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: a. A Fly
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: d. Struck out
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: d. Twist
Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: f. Home Run
Baseball players - Color lightgraph: Home run
Cyrtanthus angustifolius, Pierre Joseph Redoute
America, portrait
Two men riding camels in front of a pyramid
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The cliffs of Engedi.  They form an very difficult pass, and the zigzag paths are not kept in repair.  The surface of the limestone rock is of marble-like smoothness, and a pale reddish tint is the prevailing color.
Where the luscious pineapple grows, Florida, U.S.A. [Color view.]
Where the luscious pineapple grows, Florida, U.S.A. [Color view.]
Lily pond, Schenley Park, Pittsburg, Pa., U.S.A. [Color view.]
On the Color. plateau, near Zion National Park, Utah.
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
Baseball players - The hero of a home run, The ladies favorite
Baseball players - Something must be done, Put it there!
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: c. Bravo! The pet of the nine
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: e. Muff
Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: a. A Fly
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: b. Foul
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: d. Twist
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: d. Struck out
Baseball players - Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: c. Judgement
Six cards in color, from Ropes Apothecaries: f. Home Run
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: e. A close affair, hugging the bat
Baseball players - Color lightgraph: Home run
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
Where the luscious pineapple grows, Florida, U.S.A. [Color view.]
Lily pond, Schenley Park, Pittsburg, Pa., U.S.A. [Color view.]
On the Color. plateau, near Zion National Park, Utah.
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
I can stand for your color but your hair won't do
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
The Independent Republic of Liberia : its constitution and declaration of independence : address of the colonists to the free people of color in the United States, with other documents; issued chiefly for the use of the free people of color
68 CE: Vespasian, on a visit to the Dead Sea, demonstrates its famed buoyancy. He orders some non-swimmers to be thrown into deep water with their hands tied behind their back; all rise to the surface and float. Other remarkable properties of the Dead Sea are also described, such as the changing color of its water and its bituminous mud, so sticky that it can only be removed from the hulls of boats with women's monthly secretions. Use of this illustration of swans a-swimming is evidently an allusion to the buoyancy of the water.
Oliver Twist. Cruikshank, George. 2 original water color drawings n.d.
pictorial works
( 2 items )
Oliver Twist. Cruikshank, George. 2 original water color drawings n.d.
pictorial works
( 2 items )
Oliver Twist. Cruikshank, George. 2 original water color drawings n.d.
pictorial works
( 2 items )
Where the luscious pineapple grows, Florida, U.S.A. [Color view.]
The door to the bathroom in the old Ellis Island Hospital building describes the types of diseases that were prevelent. Jersey City, New Jersey

The door to the bathroom in the old Ellis Island Hospital building des...

Digital image produced by Carol M. Highsmith to represent her original film transparency; some details may differ between the film and the digital images. Title, date, and keywords provided by the photographer.... More

View of World Trade Center towers and the lower Manhattan skyline through registry room window at dusk. Ellis Island, Jersey City, New Jersey
Immigration processing reenactment inside the Ellis Island immigration station, Jersey City, New Jersey

Immigration processing reenactment inside the Ellis Island immigration...

Digital image produced by Carol M. Highsmith to represent her original film transparency; some details may differ between the film and the digital images. Title, date, and keywords provided by the photographer.... More

View of the World Trade Center, New York, New York, from Ellis Island

View of the World Trade Center, New York, New York, from Ellis Island

Digital image produced by Carol M. Highsmith to represent her original film transparency; some details may differ between the film and the digital images. This image was taken in 2001. Title, date, subject note... More

Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: a. Something must be done, Put it there!
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: a. Something must be done, Put it there!
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: b. The hero of a home run, The ladies favorite
Five cards in color, from Gargling Oil Liniment: b. The hero of a home run, The ladies favorite
Population of the United States by sex, general nativity, and color: 1890 and 1900.
Observations intended to favour a supposition that the black color (as it is called) of the Negroes is derived from the leprosy
Color portrait in enclosure of "Immortality" (holograph essay/lecture, draft, unsigned, undated).
Baseball players - A Fly
Baseball players - Foul advertising card
Baseball players - Judgement advertising card
Baseball players - Twist advertising card
Baseball players - Muff advertising card
Baseball players - Home Run
Baseball players - Bravo! The pet of the nine
Baseball players - Struck out
Baseball players - A close affair, hugging the bat
Baseball players - Home run
Viola, tricolor hortensis  = Viola di tre color = Violette, Pensée. [Pansey violet]
Prang's prize babies plate VII, fourth color; plate VIII, four colors combined.
Prang's prize babies, plate IX, fifth color; plate X, five colors combined.
Prang's prize babies, plate XI, sixth color; plate XII, six colors combined.
Prang's prize babies. plate XIII, seventh color; plate XIV, seven colors combined.
Prang's prize babies, plate XV, eighth color; plate XVI, eight colors combined.
Prang's prize babies, plate XVII, ninth color; plate XVII, nine colors combined.
Prang's prize babies : plate XIX, tenth color; plate XX, ten colors combined.
Prang's prize babies : plate XXI, eleventh color; plate XXII, eleven colors combined.
Prang's prize babies : plate XXIII, twelfth color; plate XXIV, twelve colors combined.
Prang's prize babies : plate XXV, thirteenth color; plate XXVI, thirteen colors combined.
Prang's prize babies : plate XXVII, fourteenth color; plate XXVIII, fourteen colors combined.
Prang's prize babies : plate XXIX, fifteenth color; plate XXX, fifteen colors combined.
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