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Contracted from Vulgar Latin *eccum illui, (genitive-)dative masculine singular of *eccum ille, under the influence of Latin cui (to whom). Compare French celui.[1] and Romanian acelui.


  • IPA(key): /koˈluj/
  • Rhymes: -uj
  • Hyphenation: co‧lùi


colui m (feminine colei, plural coloro, demonstrative)

  1. (literary, used to indicate a person far from both the speaker and the listener) he, him; that man
    • 1998, J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter e la pietra filosofale[1], page 85:
      Dopo tutto, Colui-Che-Non-Deve-Essere-Nominato ha fatto grandi cose...terribili, è vero, ma grandi.
      After all, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named did great things...terrible, yes, but great.
    • 1320, Dante Alighieri, La Divina Commedia[2], Paradiso, Canto I:
      La gloria di colui che tutto move per l'universo penetra, e risplende in una parte più e meno altrove.
      The glory of Him that moves everything in the universe permeates and shines in one part and less in another.
  2. (literary, archaic, belonging to a person far from both the speaker and the listener) his

Usage notes[edit]

  • Almost always followed by a relative pronoun.
  • When used alone, the pronouns colui, colei, and coloro are often pejorative.

Related terms[edit]


  1. ^ colèi in – De Agostini Editore





  1. first-person singular perfect active indicative of colō