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Columbia (; kə-LUM-bee-ə) is the female national personification of the United States. It was also a historical name applied to the Americas and to the New World. The association has given rise to the names of many American places, objects, institutions and companies, including the District of Columbia; Columbia, South Carolina; Columbia University; “Hail, Columbia” and Columbia Rediviva; the Columbia River. Images of the Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World, erected in 1886) largely displaced personified Columbia as the female symbol of the United States by around 1920, although Lady Liberty was seen as an aspect of Columbia. However, Columbia’s most prominent display today is being part of the logo of the Hollywood film studio Columbia Pictures.
Columbia is a New Latin toponym, in use since the 1730s with reference to the Thirteen Colonies which formed the United States. It originated from the name of the Genoese explorer Christopher Columbus and from the Latin ending -ia, common in the Latin names of countries (paralleling Britannia, Gallia, Zealandia, and others).