A colony is a territory subject to a form of foreign rule. Though dominated by the foreign colonizers, the rule remains separate to the original country of the colonizers, the metropolitan state (or "mother country"), within the shared imperialist administration. This colonial administrative separation, though often blurred, makes colonies neither annexed or incorporated territories nor client states. Colonies contemporarily are identified and organized as not sufficiently self-governed dependent territories. Other past colonies have become either sufficiently incorporated and self-governed, or independent, with some to a varying degree dominated by remaining colonial settler societies or neocolonialism.
The term colony originates from the ancient Roman colonia, a type of Roman settlement. Derived from colon-us (farmer, cultivator, planter, or settler), it carries with it the sense of 'farm' and 'landed estate'.
Furthermore the term was used to refer to the olde