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From Medieval Latin trānspārentia.


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transparency (countable and uncountable, plural transparencies)

  1. (uncountable) The quality of being transparent; transparence.
  2. (uncountable) Openness; accessibility to scrutiny.
    • 2023 March 8, Howard Johnston, “Was Marples the real railway wrecker?”, in RAIL, number 978, page 52:
      And it [bribery and fraud] didn't stop there. Both Sir Winston Churchill and later Labour leader Michael Foot were allegedly regular recipients of private cheques that would have seen them summarily sacked in this present age of transparency.
  3. (countable, art) A transparent artwork, viewable by shining light through it.
    • 1810, Royal Collection Trust, Design for a transparency of George III:
      According to Bray (Life of Stothard, p. 50), the silversmiths Rundell and Bridge displayed a large transparency by Thomas Stothard, painted in thin oils on canvas and lit from behind, in front of their house on Ludgate Hill in honour of the King's Jubilee in 1810.
    • 1837, L[etitia] E[lizabeth] L[andon], “The Fête”, in Ethel Churchill: Or, The Two Brides. [], volume III, London: Henry Colburn, [], →OCLC, page 59:
      It soon came: as they were on their way to a transparency of their majesties, not a little larger than life—with Bellona, in a very handsome helmet, on one side, and Peace, with a cornucopia and a full blown wreath of roses, on the other—the path was interrupted by a little knot of gentlemen.
  4. (countable, photography) A translucent film-like material with an image imprinted on it, viewable by shining light through it.
  5. (countable) Something transparent.
    • 1986 April 12, H. W. Seng, “The Chunks-of-Life Approach Yields Thin Fiction”, in Gay Community News, page 12:
      John Lehmann's narrator Jack Marlowe is such a transparency, and his fiction is totally formless.
  6. (signal processing) Sufficient accuracy to make the compressed result perceptually indistinguishable from the uncompressed input.

Derived terms[edit]