When your favorite color is red, do you say,

I like the color red.


I like the red color.

Is there any difference of meaning between the two ways of saying about your favorite color?


"The red colour" is a fairly rare expression, but it can be used. It answers the question "which of the colours?", selecting one from a set of colours that is somehow already known: maybe the colours on a chart, or some colours that have already been talked about.

"The colour red" is much more common, and refers to a colour (really, a range of colours) chosen from all possible colours.

[I'm using the British spelling for 'colour']

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For the phrase as written, you should use the first one. Ideally, it means:

I like (the color) red.
I like red.

Wording like "red color" is usually used to describe a quality of something, and therefore would be used as an adjective like "red colored". For example:

I like the red colored fire engine. (The fire engine that is painted red)


I like the red colored candies. (The candies where red coloring was added)

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  • Frankly, I would never say; I like the red-colored fire engine. It does not sound idiomatic. – Lambie Nov 14 '16 at 13:49

"I like the colour red" implies you like red in general.

"I like the red colour" implies that you are liking a specific red colour - that it is an abbreviated phrase, e.g. of "I like the red colour [in this photograph]".

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