color bar


variants US color bar or British colour bar
plural color bars
: a set of societal or legal barriers that segregates people of color from white people (as by restricting social interaction or requiring separate facilities) and prevents people of color from exercising the same rights and accessing the same opportunities as white people : color line
"Rosetta [LeNoire] did more than dream of a theater with no color bar—she actually built one," he [Bill Clinton] said.Douglas Martin
usually used with the
In London, the department funded two student hostels, which aided the many students whom the color bar prevented from finding decent lodging …Aminatta FornaAs a minor leaguer, he was one of five players who broke the color bar in the South Atlantic League.The (Mankato, Minnesota) Free Press

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Communications were lost with the drone as the image can be seen pixelating into color bars. Luis Martinez, ABC News, 16 Mar. 2023 Lighter blue indicates less snow, deeper blue is more snow (see color bar at left). Tom Yulsman, Discover Magazine, 22 Apr. 2017 Massingale said his father couldn’t work as a carpenter because of a color bar preventing African Americans from joining the carpenters’ union. NBC News, 14 Feb. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'color bar.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1869, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of color bar was in 1869

Dictionary Entries Near color bar

Cite this Entry

“Color bar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Jun. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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