A property of a physial item meaning how much light can pass through it.

Transparent means almost all light goes through.
Translucent means only some light goes through.
Opaque means no light goes through.

Can be used for anything else that you can see through, whether physically or metaphorically.

Physical transparency is related to the number of unbonded electrons in the molecules of the substance. With more unbounded electrons, the material tends to absorb energy (in the form of photons), and then later release it at a different frequency, often in the infrared. So visible light is absorbed, and comes out as heat. Without those unbonded electrons, the energy is later released at the same frequency and in the same direction. So the material.

Another name for a photographic slide, produced from slide film.

Transparency describes how open an organisation is in having its internal processes available for external public scrutiny. If an organisation cannot be scrutinised, then there is no guarantee of accountability, and thus it may waste money, accept bribes, hide extra-terrestrials in an abandoned zinc mine in Area 51 or renumerate failed company directors with millions of dollars.

Trans*par"en*cy (?), n.; pl. Transparencies (#). [Cf. F. transparence.]


The quality or condition of being transparent; transparence.


That which is transparent; especially, a picture painted on thin cloth or glass, or impressed on porcelain, or the like, to be viewed by natural or artificial light, which shines through it.



© Webster 1913.

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