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Violet is the
color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. Currently, American Engli ...

color
of
light Light or visible light is electromagnetic radiation within the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that is visual perception, perceived by the human eye. Visible light is usually defined as having wavelengths in the range of 400–700 nan ...

light
at the short
wavelength In physics Physics is the that studies , its , its and behavior through , and the related entities of and . "Physical science is that department of knowledge which relates to the order of nature, or, in other words, to the regular su ...
end of the
visible spectrum The visible spectrum is the portion of the that is to the . in this range of s is called ' or simply . A typical will respond to wavelengths from about 380 to about 750 . In terms of frequency, this corresponds to a band in the vicinity of ...
, between
blue Blue is one of the three primary colours of pigments in painting and traditional colour theory In the visual arts The visual arts are art forms such as painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pig ...

blue
and invisible
ultraviolet Ultraviolet (UV) is a form of electromagnetic radiation In physics Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and behavior through Spacetime, ...

ultraviolet
. It is one of the seven colors that
Isaac Newton Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726/27) was an English mathematician A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics a ...

Isaac Newton
labeled when dividing the spectrum of visible light in 1672. Violet light has a wavelength between approximately 380 and 435 nanometers. The color's name is derived from the
violet Violet may refer to: Common meanings * Violet (color), a spectral color with wavelengths shorter than blue * One of a list of plants known as violet, particularly: ** Viola (plant), ''Viola'' (plant), a genus of flowering plants Places United ...
flower. In the
RGB color model The RGB color model is an additive Additive may refer to: Mathematics * Additive function In number theory, an additive function is an arithmetic function ''f''(''n'') of the positive integer ''n'' such that whenever ''a'' and ''b'' are c ...

RGB color model
used in computer and television screens, violet is produced by
mixing
mixing
red and blue light, with more blue than red. In the
RYB color model RYB (an abbreviation of red–yellow–blue) is a subtractive color model used in art and applied design in which red, yellow, and blue pigments are considered primary colors. Under traditional color theory, (which some artists see as the “corre ...

RYB color model
historically used by painters, violet is created with a combination of red and blue pigments and is located between blue and
purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the ...

purple
on the
color wheel A color wheel or color circle is an abstract illustrative organization of color Color (American English) or colour (Commonwealth English) is the visual perception, visual perceptual Physical property, property corresponding in humans ...

color wheel
. In the
CMYK color model The CMYK color model (also known as process color, or four color) is a subtractive color model A color model is an abstract mathematical model describing the way colors can be represented as tuples of numbers, typically as three or four v ...
used in printing, violet is created with a combination of
magenta Magenta () is a color that is variously defined as purplish-red, reddish-purple Purple refers to any of a variety of colors with hue between red and blue. Purple is closely associated with Violet (color), violet. In optics, purple and vi ...

magenta
and cyan pigments, with more magenta than cyan. Violet is closely associated with
purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the ...

purple
. In
optics Optics is the branch of physics that studies the behaviour and properties of light, including its interactions with matter and the construction of optical instruments, instruments that use or Photodetector, detect it. Optics usually describes t ...

optics
, violet is a
spectral color A spectral color is a color that is evoked in a typical human by a single wavelength of light in the visible spectrum, or by a relatively narrow band of wavelengths, also known as Monochromatic radiation, monochromatic light. Every wavelength ...
(referring to the color of different single wavelengths of light), whereas purple is the color of various combinations of red and blue (or violet) light, some of which humans perceive as similar to violet. In common usage, both terms are used to refer to a variety of colors between blue and red in
hue In color theory In the visual arts The visual arts are art forms such as painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after applica ...

hue
. Violet has a long history of association with royalty, originally because
Tyrian purple Tyrian purple ( grc, πορφύρα ''porphúra''; la, purpura), also known as Phoenician red, Phoenician purple, royal purple, imperial purple, or imperial dye, is a reddish-purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (Ame ...
dye was extremely expensive in antiquity. The emperors of Rome wore purple togas, as did the Byzantine emperors. During the
Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past events and affairs of the people of Europe since the beginning of ...
, violet was worn by
bishop A bishop is an ordained, consecrated, or appointed member of the Clergy#Christianity, Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight. Within the Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Moravian Chu ...

bishop
s and university professors and was often used in art as the color of the robes of the
Virgin Mary According to the gospels Gospel originally meant the Christian message, but in the 2nd century it came to be used also for the books in which the message was set out; in this sense a gospel can be defined as a loose-knit, episodic narrat ...
. In
Chinese painting Chinese painting () is one of the oldest continuous artistic traditions in the world. Painting in the traditional style is known today in Chinese as ''guó huà'' (), meaning "national painting" or "native painting", as opposed to Western styles ...

Chinese painting
, the color violet represents the "unity transcending the duality of
Yin and yang In Ancient Chinese philosophy Chinese philosophy originates in the Spring and Autumn period () and Warring States period (), during a period known as the "Hundred Schools of Thought", which was characterized by significan ...

Yin and yang
" and "the ultimate harmony of the
universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of space and time and their contents, including planets, stars, galaxy, galaxies, and all other forms of matter and energy. The Big Bang theory is the prevailing cosmological description of the development ...

universe
".Varichon, Anne ''Colors:What They Mean and How to Make Them'' New York:2006 Abrams Page 138 In
Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian religion Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the religions that originated in the Indian subcontinent. These religions, which include Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, ...

Hinduism
and
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...

Buddhism
purple and/or violet is associated with the
Crown Chakra Sahasrara ( sa, सहस्रार, IAST: , en, "thousand-petalled", with #Alternative names, many alternative names and spellings) or the crown chakra is considered the seventh primary chakra in some tantra, tantric yoga traditions. Hatha ...
.https://web.archive.org/web/20170508232015/http://www.color-wheel-artist.com/meanings-of-violet.html According to surveys in Europe and the United States, purple and/or violet is the color people most often associate with extravagance and individualism, the unconventional, the artificial, and ambiguity.Eva Heller, ''Psychologie de la couleur: effets et symboliques''. p. 4. "La plus individualist et extravagant des coulours." (associated by 26 percent of respondents to survey with "extravagance", by 22 percent with "individualism", 24 percent with "vanity", 21 percent with "ambiguity").


Etymology and definitions

The word ''violet'' as a color name derives from the
Middle English Middle English (abbreviated to ME) was a form of the English language English is a West Germanic language of the Indo-European language family The Indo-European languages are a language family A language is a structured sys ...
and
Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular o ...
''violete'', in turn from the Latin ''viola'', names of the
violet Violet may refer to: Common meanings * Violet (color), a spectral color with wavelengths shorter than blue * One of a list of plants known as violet, particularly: ** Viola (plant), ''Viola'' (plant), a genus of flowering plants Places United ...
flower. The first recorded use as a color name in English was in 1370.


Violet and purple

Violet is closely associated with
purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the ...

purple
. In
optics Optics is the branch of physics that studies the behaviour and properties of light, including its interactions with matter and the construction of optical instruments, instruments that use or Photodetector, detect it. Optics usually describes t ...

optics
, violet is a
spectral color A spectral color is a color that is evoked in a typical human by a single wavelength of light in the visible spectrum, or by a relatively narrow band of wavelengths, also known as Monochromatic radiation, monochromatic light. Every wavelength ...
: It refers to the color of any different single wavelength of light on the short wavelength end of the visible spectrum (between approximately 380 and 435 nanometers), whereas purple is the color of various combinations of red, blue, and violet light, some of which humans perceive as similar to violet. In common usage, both terms are used to refer to a variety of colors between blue and red in
hue In color theory In the visual arts The visual arts are art forms such as painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after applica ...

hue
. Historically, violet has tended to be used for bluer hues and purple for redder hues. In the traditional
color wheel A color wheel or color circle is an abstract illustrative organization of color Color (American English) or colour (Commonwealth English) is the visual perception, visual perceptual Physical property, property corresponding in humans ...

color wheel
used by painters, violet and purple are both placed between red and blue, with violet being closer to blue. In humans, the L (red)
cone A cone is a three-dimensional Three-dimensional space (also: 3-space or, rarely, tri-dimensional space) is a geometric setting in which three values (called parameter A parameter (from the Ancient Greek language, Ancient Greek wikt:πα ...

cone
in the eye is primarily sensitive to long wavelength light in the yellow-red region of the spectrum, but is also somewhat sensitive to the shorter wavelength violet light that primarily stimulates the S (blue) cone. As a result, when violet light strikes the eye, the S-cone is stimulated strongly and the L-cone is stimulated weakly. Accordingly, strong blue light mixed with weaker red light can mimic this pattern of stimulation, causing humans to perceive colors that have the same hue as violet, but with lower saturation. Computer and television screens rely on this phenomenon. Because they use the
RGB color model The RGB color model is an additive Additive may refer to: Mathematics * Additive function In number theory, an additive function is an arithmetic function ''f''(''n'') of the positive integer ''n'' such that whenever ''a'' and ''b'' are c ...

RGB color model
, they cannot produce violet light and instead substitute purple, combining blue light at high intensity with red light of approximately half the intensity.


In science


Optics

Violet is at one end of the spectrum of visible light, between
blue Blue is one of the three primary colours of pigments in painting and traditional colour theory In the visual arts The visual arts are art forms such as painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pig ...

blue
light, which has a longer wavelength, and
ultraviolet Ultraviolet (UV) is a form of electromagnetic radiation In physics Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and behavior through Spacetime, ...

ultraviolet
light, which has a shorter wavelength and is not visible to humans. Violet encompasses light with a wavelength of approximately 380 to 435 nanometers. Violet objects often appear dark, because human vision is relatively insensitive to those wavelengths.


Chemistry – pigments and dyes

The earliest violet pigments used by humans, found in prehistoric cave paintings, were made from the minerals
manganese Manganese is a chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbers of protons in their atomic nucleus, nuclei. Unlike chemical compounds, chemical e ...

manganese
and
hematite Hematite (), also spelled as haematite, is a common iron oxide Iron oxides are chemical compounds composed of iron and oxygen Oxygen is the chemical element with the chemical symbol, symbol O and atomic number 8. It is a member o ...

hematite
. Manganese is still used today by the
Aranda people Artist Albert Namatjira was a Western Arrernte man. The Arrernte () people, sometimes referred to as the Aranda, Arunta or Arrarnta, are a group of Aboriginal Australian peoples who live in the Arrernte lands, at ''Mparntwe'' (Alice Springs) ...
, a group of
indigenous Australians Indigenous Australians are people with familial heritage to groups that lived in Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continen ...
, as a traditional pigment for coloring the skin during rituals. It is also used by the
Hopi The Hopi are a Native American tribe In the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country Contiguous United States, primarily located in North America. It co ...

Hopi
Indians of
Arizona Arizona ( ; nv, Hoozdo Hahoodzo ; ood, Alĭ ṣonak) is a U.S. state, state in the Southwestern United States, Southwestern region of the United States. It is also usually considered part of the Mountain States, Mountain states. It is th ...

Arizona
to color ritual objects. The most famous violet-purple dye in the ancient world was
Tyrian purple Tyrian purple ( grc, πορφύρα ''porphúra''; la, purpura), also known as Phoenician red, Phoenician purple, royal purple, imperial purple, or imperial dye, is a reddish-purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (Ame ...
, made from a type of sea snail called the
murex ''Murex'' is a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their a ...
, found around the Mediterranean. In western
Polynesia Polynesia (, ; from grc, πολύς "many" and grc, νῆσος "island") ( to, Faka-Polinisia; mi, Porinihia; haw, Polenekia; fj, Kai-Polinesia; sm, Polenisia; rar, Porinetia; ty, Pōrīnetia; tvl, Polenisia; tkl, Polenihia) is a ...

Polynesia
, residents of the islands made a violet dye similar to Tyrian purple from the
sea urchin Sea urchins () are spine (zoology), spiny, globular echinoderms in the class Echinoidea. About 950 species of sea urchin live on the seabed of every ocean and inhabit every depth zone — from the intertidal seashore down to . The spherical, ha ...

sea urchin
. In Central America, the inhabitants made a dye from a different sea snail, the
purpura Purpura () is a condition of red or purple discolored spots on the skin Skin is the layer of usually soft, flexible outer tissue covering the body of a vertebrate animal, with three main functions: protection, regulation, and sensation. Oth ...
, found on the coasts of
Costa Rica Costa Rica (, ; ; literally "Rich Coast"), officially the Republic of Costa Rica ( es, República de Costa Rica), is a country in Central America Central America ( es, América Central, , ''Centroamérica'' ) is a region of the Amer ...

Costa Rica
and
Nicaragua Nicaragua (; ), officially the Republic of Nicaragua (), is the largest Sovereign state, country in the Central American isthmus, bordered by Honduras to the northwest, the Caribbean Sea, Caribbean to the east, Costa Rica to the south, and th ...

Nicaragua
. The Mayans used this color to dye fabric for religious ceremonies, and the Aztecs used it for paintings of ideograms, where it symbolized royalty.Anne Carichon (2000), ''Couleurs: pigments et teintures dans les mains des peuples''. p. 133 During the Middle Ages, most artists made purple or violet on their paintings by combining red and blue pigments; usually blue azurite or lapis-lazuli with
red ochre Ochre ( ; from grc, ὤχρα, from , , pale), or ocher in American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language nativ ...
,
cinnabar Cinnabar () or cinnabarite (), from the grc, κιννάβαρι (), is the bright scarlet to brick-red form of mercury(II) sulfide Mercury sulfide'', or mercury(II) sulfide is a chemical compound composed of the chemical elements mercury (el ...

cinnabar
or minium. They also combined lake colors made by mixing dye with powder; using
woad ''Isatis tinctoria'', also called woad (), dyer's woad, or glastum, is a flowering plant in the family Brassicaceae. It is occasionally known as Asp of Jerusalem. Woad is also the name of a blue dye produced from the leaves of the plant. Woad ...
or
indigo InterGlobe Aviation Ltd d/b/a IndiGo is an Indian low-cost airline headquartered in Gurgaon, Haryana, India. It is the largest List of airlines of India, airline in India by passengers carried and fleet size, with a 57% domestic market shar ...

indigo
dye for the blue, and dye made from
cochineal The cochineal ( ; ; scientific name: ''Dactylopius coccus'') is a scale insect Scale insects are small insects of the Order (biology), order Hemiptera, suborder Sternorrhyncha. Of dramatically variable appearance and extreme sexual dimorphi ...
for the red.
Orcein Orcein, also archil, orchil, lacmus and C.I. Natural Red 28, are names for dye 300px, Yarn drying after being dyed in the early American tradition, at Conner Prairie living history museum. A dye is a wiktionary:colored, colored substance that ch ...

Orcein
, or ''purple moss'', was another common violet dye. It was known to the ancient Greeks and Hebrews, was made from a Mediterranean
lichen A lichen ( , ) is a composite organism In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecu ...

lichen
called archil or dyer's moss (
Roccella tinctoria ''Roccella tinctoria'' is a lichenised species of fungus in the genus ''Roccella (genus), Roccella'', homotypic synonym of ''Lecanora tinctoria'' (DC.) Czerwiak., 1849. It was first described by Augustin Pyramus de Candolle in 1805. It has the f ...
), combined with an ammoniac, usually urine. Orcein began to achieve popularity again in the 19th century, when violet and purple became the color of demi-mourning, worn after a widow or widower had worn black for a certain time, before he or she returned to wearing ordinary colors. In the 18th century, chemists in England, France and Germany began to create the first synthetic dyes. Two synthetic purple dyes were invented at about the same time. Cudbear is a
dye A dye is a color Color (American English) or colour (Commonwealth English) is the visual perception, visual perceptual Physical property, property corresponding in humans to the categories called ''blue'', ''green'', ''red'', etc. Colo ...
extracted from orchil
lichens A lichen ( , ) is a composite organism that arises from algae or cyanobacteria living among Hypha, filaments of multiple Fungus, fungi species in a mutualism (biology), mutualistic relationship.
that can be used to dye
wool Wool is the textile A textile is a flexible material made by creating an interlocking bundle of yarn Yarn is a long continuous length of interlocked fibres, suitable for use in the production of textiles, sewing, crocheting, knitt ...
and
silk Silk is a natural Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, material world or universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of space and time and their contents, including planets, stars, galaxies, and all o ...

silk
, without the use of
mordant A mordant or dye fixative is a substance used to set (i.e. bind) dye A dye is a color Color (American English) or colour (Commonwealth English) is the visual perception, visual perceptual Physical property, property correspondin ...

mordant
. Cudbear was developed by Dr. Cuthbert Gordon of
Scotland Scotland ( sco, Scotland, gd, Alba Alba (Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic ( gd, Gàidhlig or Scots Gaelic, sometimes referred to simply as Gaelic) is a Goidelic language (in the Celtic languages, Celtic branch of the Indo-European ...

Scotland
: production began in 1758, The lichen is first boiled in a solution of
ammonium carbonate Ammonium carbonate is a salt with the chemical formula (NH4)2CO3. Since it readily degrades to gaseous ammonia and carbon dioxide upon heating, it is used as a leavening agent In cooking Cooking, cookery, or culinary arts is the art, sc ...

ammonium carbonate
. The mixture is then cooled and
ammonia Ammonia is a chemical compound, compound of nitrogen and hydrogen with the chemical formula, formula NH3. A Binary compounds of hydrogen, stable binary hydride, and the simplest pnictogen hydride, ammonia is a colourless gas with a distinct ch ...

ammonia
is added and the mixture is kept damp for 3–4 weeks. Then the lichen is dried and ground to powder. The manufacture details were carefully protected, with a ten-feet high wall being built around the manufacturing facility, and staff consisting of Highlanders sworn to secrecy. French purple was developed in France at about the same time. The lichen is extracted by urine or ammonia. Then the extract is acidified, the dissolved dye precipitates and is washed. Then it is dissolved in ammonia again, the solution is heated in air until it becomes purple, then it is precipitated with
calcium chloride Calcium chloride is an inorganic compound, a salt with the chemical formula CaCl2. It is a white coloured crystalline solid at room temperature, and it is highly soluble in water. It can be created by neutralising hydrochloric acid with calc ...

calcium chloride
; the resulting dye was more solid and stable than other purples. Cobalt violet is a synthetic pigment that was invented in the second half of the 19th century, and is made by a similar process as
cobalt blue Cobalt blue is a blue pigment A pigment is a colored material that is completely or nearly insoluble in water. In contrast, dyes are typically soluble, at least at some stage in their use. Generally dyes are often organic compound , CH4; is ...

cobalt blue
,
cerulean blue Cerulean (), also spelled caerulean, is a shade of blue Blue is one of the three primary color, primary colours of pigments in painting and traditional colour theory, as well as in the RGB color model, RGB colour model. It lies between V ...
and
cobalt green Cobalt green is an ambiguous term for either of two families of green inorganic pigments. Both are obtained by doping cobalt(II) oxide into colorless host oxides. Spinel-based cobalt green Doping Co(II) into Mg(II) and Zn(II) sites of Mg2TiO4 and ...
. It is the violet pigment most commonly used today by artists, along with
manganese violet Manganese violet is the common name for ammonium manganese(III) pyrophosphate, an inorganic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of ato ...

manganese violet
.
Mauveine Mauveine, also known as aniline purple and Perkin's mauve, was one of the first synthetic dyes. It was discovered serendipitously by William Henry Perkin in 1856 while he was attempting to synthesise the phytochemical quinine for the treatment o ...
, also known as
aniline Aniline is an organic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior an ...

aniline
purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the ...

purple
and Perkin's
mauve Mauve (, ; , ) is a pale purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varietie ...

mauve
, was the first synthetic
organic chemical , CH4; is among the simplest organic compounds. In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, structure, ...
dye, discovered in 1856. Its chemical name is 3-amino-2,±9-dimethyl-5-phenyl-7-(p-tolylamino) phenazinium acetate. In the 1950s, a new family of violet synthetic organic pigments called
quinacridone Quinacridone is an organic compound , CH4; is among the simplest organic compounds. In chemistry, organic compounds are generally any chemical compounds that contain carbon-hydrogen chemical bond, bonds. Due to carbon's ability to Catenation, c ...

quinacridone
s came onto the market. They had originally been discovered in 1896, but were not synthetized until 1936, and not manufactured until the 1950s. The colors in the group range from deep red to violet in color, and have the molecular formula C20H12N2O2. They have strong resistance to sunlight and washing, and are used in oil paints, water colors, and acrylics, as well as in automobile coatings and other industrial coatings. File:Amatista Laye 2.jpg, In
amethyst Amethyst is a violet (color), violet variety of quartz. The name comes from the Koine Greek αμέθυστος ''amethystos'' from α- ''a-'', "not" and μεθύσκω (Ancient Greek) / μεθώ (Modern Greek), "intoxicate", a reference to ...

amethyst
, the violet color arises from an impurity of iron in the quartz. File:Pigment Violet 29.svg, Chemical structure of
pigment violet 29 Pigment Violet 29 (C.I. 71129) is an organic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, p ...

pigment violet 29
. Violet pigments typically have several rings. File:Manganese violet.jpg, Manganese violet, a popular inorganic pigment.


Zoology

File:Messina Straits Argyropelecus hemigymnus.jpg, The marine hatchetfish (here eating a small crustacean) lives in extreme depths. File:PurpleUrchinPuertoVG.JPG, The purple sea urchin. File:Xylocopa violacea-Abeille charpentière-201606102.jpg, The violet carpenter bee () is one of the largest bees in
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of scienc ...

Europe
. File:Cinnyricinclus leucogaster - 20080321.jpg, The
violet-backed starling The violet-backed starling (''Cinnyricinclus leucogaster''), also known as the plum-coloured starling or amethyst starling, is a relatively small species (17 cm) of starling in the family Sturnidae. It is the only member of the genus ''Cinnyricinc ...
is found in
Sub-Saharan Africa Sub-Saharan Africa (commonly called Black Africa) is, geographically, the area of the continent of Africa that lies south of the Sahara. According to the United Nations, it consists of all list of sovereign states and dependent territories i ...

Sub-Saharan Africa
. File:Violet Sabrewing JCB.jpg, The violet sabrewing is found in
Central America Central America ( es, América Central, , ''Centroamérica'' ) is a region of the Americas The Americas (also collectively called America) is a landmass comprising the totality of North North is one of the four compass points or ...

Central America
. File:Amazona imperialis -Roseau -Dominica -aviary-6a-3c.jpg, The imperial amazon parrot is featured on the national flag of
Dominica Dominica ( or ; Kalinago : ; french: Dominique; Dominican Creole French Dominican Creole French is a French-based creole, which is the generally spoken language in Dominica Dominica ( or ; Kalinago language: ; french: Dominique; Do ...

Dominica
, making it the only national flag in the world with a violet color.


Botany

File:Lobelia (aka).jpg,
Lobelia ''Lobelia'' () is a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology, taxonomy () is the scientific study of naming, defining (Circumscription (taxonomy), cir ...

Lobelia
File:- Crocus -.jpg,
Crocus ''Crocus'' (English plural: crocuses or croci) is a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life an ...

Crocus
flowers. File:Royal Botanical Gardens Lilac Celebration.JPG,
Lilac ''Syringa vulgaris'', the lilac or common lilac, is a species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A species is often d ...

Lilac
flowers File:Pensées violettes et noires.JPG,
Pansy The garden pansy (''Viola'' × ''wittrockiana'') is a type of large-flowered hybrid plant cultivated as a garden flower. It is derived by Hybrid (biology), hybridization from several species in the Section (botany), section ''Melanium'' ("the p ...

Pansy
flowers. File:Viole.jpg, Sweet violet flowers. File:Iris sanguinea 2007-05-13 361.jpg, The flower takes its name from the
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
word for
rainbow A rainbow is a meteorological Meteorology is a branch of the atmospheric sciences which includes atmospheric chemistry and atmospheric physics, with a major focus on weather forecasting Weather forecasting is the application of sc ...

rainbow
. File:Vaucluse lavanda.jpg,
Lavender ''Lavandula'' (common name lavender) is a genus of 47 known species of flowering plants in the mint Family (biology), family, Lamiaceae. It is native plant, native to the Old World and is found in Cape Verde and the Canary Islands, and from Euro ...

Lavender
fields in the
Vaucluse Vaucluse (; oc, Vauclusa, label= Provençal or ) is a department Department may refer to: * Departmentalization, division of a larger organization into parts with specific responsibility Government and military *Department (country subdivisi ...
, in
Provence Provence (, , , , ; oc, Provença or ''Prouvènço'' , ) is a geographical region and historical province of southeastern France, which extends from the left bank of the lower Rhône The Rhône ( , ; german: Rhone ; wae, Rotten ; it, ...

Provence
, France File:Glycines (Wisteria) (2).jpg, alt=Wisteria blooms are a light violet color.,
Wisteria ''Wisteria'' is a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology, taxonomy () is the scientific study of naming, defining (Circumscription (taxonomy), circu ...

Wisteria
blooms are a light violet color. File:Aubergine.jpg, An
eggplant Eggplant ( US, Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous ...

eggplant
.


In history and art


Prehistory and antiquity

Violet is one of the oldest colors used by humans. Traces of very dark violet, made by grinding the mineral
manganese Manganese is a chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbers of protons in their atomic nucleus, nuclei. Unlike chemical compounds, chemical e ...

manganese
, mixed with water or animal fat and then brushed on the cave wall or applied with the fingers, are found in the
prehistoric cave art Cave paintings are a type of parietal art (which category also includes petroglyphs, or engravings), found on the wall or ceilings of caves. The term usually implies prehistoric origin, but cave paintings can also be of recent production: In the ...
in
Pech Merle Pech Merle is a cave which opens onto a hillside at Cabrerets Cabrerets ( Languedocien: ''Crabairet'') is a commune A commune is an intentional community of people sharing living spaces, interests, values, beliefs, and often property ...
, in France, dating back about twenty-five thousand years. It has also been found in the
cave of Altamira The Cave of Altamira (; es, Cueva de Altamira ) is a cave complex A cave or cavern is a natural void in the Earth#Surface, ground, specifically a space large enough for a human to enter. Caves often form by the weathering of rock and often ex ...
and
Lascaux Lascaux ( , ; french: Grotte de Lascaux , "Lascaux Cave") is a network of caves near the village of Montignac, in the department Department may refer to: * Departmentalization, division of a larger organization into parts with specific respo ...

Lascaux
. It was sometimes used as an alternative to black charcoal. Sticks of manganese, used for drawing, have been found at sites occupied by
Neanderthal Neanderthals (, also Neandertals, ''Homo neanderthalensis'' or ''Homo sapiens neanderthalensis'') are an extinct species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an org ...
s in France and Israel. From the grinding tools at various sites, it appears it may also have been used to color the body and to decorate animal skins. More recently, the earliest dates on cave paintings have been pushed back farther than 35,000 years. Hand paintings on rock walls in Australia may be even older, dating back as far as 50,000 years. Berries of the genus
rubus ''Rubus'' is a large and diverse genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, i ...

rubus
, such as
blackberries The blackberry is an edible fruit In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this f ...

blackberries
, were a common source of dyes in antiquity. The ancient Egyptians made a kind of violet dye by combining the juice of the
mulberry ''Morus'', a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their an ...

mulberry
with crushed green grapes. The Roman historian
Pliny the Elder #REDIRECT Pliny the Elder #REDIRECT Pliny the Elder#REDIRECT Pliny the Elder Gaius Plinius Secundus (AD 23/2479), called Pliny the Elder (), was a Roman author, a naturalist Natural history is a domain of inquiry involving organisms, includi ...

Pliny the Elder
reported that the
Gauls The Gauls ( la, Galli; grc, Γαλάται, ''Galátai'') were a group of Celtic The words Celt and Celtic (also Keltic) may refer to: Ethno-linguistics *Celts The Celts (, see pronunciation of ''Celt'' for different usages) are. "CELTS ...
used a violet dye made from
bilberry Bilberries (), or occasionally European blueberries), are a primarily Eurasia Eurasia () is the largest continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography ...

bilberry
to color the clothing of slaves. These dyes made a satisfactory purple, but it faded quickly in sunlight and when washed.


The Middle Ages and the Renaissance

Violet and purple retained their status as the color of emperors and princes of the church throughout the long rule of the
Byzantine Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn ...

Byzantine Empire
. While violet was worn less frequently by Medieval and Renaissance kings and princes, it was worn by the professors of many of Europe's new universities. Their robes were modeled after those of the clergy, and they often wore square violet caps and violet robes, or black robes with violet trim. Violet also played an important part in the religious paintings of the Renaissance. Angels and the
Virgin Mary According to the gospels Gospel originally meant the Christian message, but in the 2nd century it came to be used also for the books in which the message was set out; in this sense a gospel can be defined as a loose-knit, episodic narrat ...

Virgin Mary
were often portrayed wearing violet robes. The 15th-century Florentine painter
Cennino Cennini Cennino d'Andrea Cennini (c. 1360 – before 1427) was an Italian Italian may refer to: * Anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Italy ** Italians, an ethnic group or simply a citizen of the Italian Republic ** Italian lan ...
advised artists: "If you want to make a lovely violet colour, take fine lacca, ultramarine blue (the same amount of the one as of the other)..." For fresco painters, he advised a less-expensive version, made of a mixture of blue indigo and red
hematite Hematite (), also spelled as haematite, is a common iron oxide Iron oxides are chemical compounds composed of iron and oxygen Oxygen is the chemical element with the chemical symbol, symbol O and atomic number 8. It is a member o ...

hematite
. File:The Wilton Diptych (Right).jpg, The
Wilton Diptych The Wilton Diptych () is a small portable diptych A diptych (; from the Greek δίπτυχον, ''di'' "two" + '' ptychē'' "fold") is any object with two flat plates which form a pair, often attached by hinge. For example, the standard notebo ...

Wilton Diptych
(1395), painted for King
Richard II Richard II (6 January 1367 – c. 14 February 1400), also known as Richard of Bordeaux, was King of England from 1377 until he was List of deposed politicians, deposed in 1399. Richard's father, Edward the Black Prince, Edward, Prince of ...

Richard II
. File:Rafael - Ressurreição de Cristo (detalhe - anjo).jpg, A violet-clad angel from the ''
Resurrection of Christ The resurrection of Jesus, or anastasis, is the Christian belief that God God, in monotheistic thought, is conceived of as the supreme being, creator, and principal object of faith Faith, derived from Latin ''fides'' and Old French ''f ...
'' by Raphael (1483–1520).


18th and 19th centuries

In the 18th century, purple was a color worn by royalty, aristocrats and the wealthy, and by both men and women. Good-quality purple fabric was expensive, and beyond the reach of ordinary people. The first
cobalt violet Cobalt phosphate is the inorganic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, be ...
, the intensely red-violet cobalt arsenate, was highly toxic. Although it persisted in some paint lines into the twentieth-century, it was displaced by less toxic cobalt compounds such as cobalt phosphate. Cobalt violet appeared in the second half of the 19th century, broadening the palette of artists with its range of purple colors. Cobalt violet was used by
Paul Signac Paul Victor Jules Signac ( , , ; 11 November 1863 – 15 August 1935) was a French Neo-Impressionist painter Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, ...
(1863–1935),
Claude Monet Oscar-Claude Monet (, , ; 14 November 1840 – 5 December 1926) was a French painter and founder of impressionist Impressionism is a 19th-century art movement characterized by relatively small, thin, yet visible brush strokes, open c ...
(1840–1926), and
Georges Seurat Georges Pierre Seurat ( , , ; 2 December 1859 – 29 March 1891) was a French post-Impressionist artist. He is best known for devising the painting techniques known as chromoluminarism and pointillism Pointillism (, ) is a technique of pai ...
(1859–1891). Today, cobalt ammonium phosphate, cobalt lithium phosphate, and cobalt phosphate are available for use by artists. Cobalt ammonium phosphate is the most reddish of the three. Cobalt phosphate is available in two varieties — a deep less saturated blueish type and a lighter and brighter somewhat more reddish type. Cobalt lithium phosphate is a saturated lighter-valued bluish violet. A color similar to cobalt ammonium phosphate, cobalt magnesium borate, was introduced in the later twentieth-century but was not deemed sufficiently lightfast for artistic use. Cobalt violet is the only truly lightfast purple pigment with relatively strong color saturation. All other light-stable purple pigments are dull by comparison. However, the high price of the pigment and the toxicity of cobalt has limited its use. In the 1860s, the popularity of using violet colors suddenly rose among painters and other artists. For example,
Vincent van Gogh Vincent Willem van Gogh (; 30 March 185329 July 1890) was a Dutch Post-Impressionist painter who posthumously became one of the most famous and influential figures in Western art ''; by Johannes Vermeer Johannes Vermeer ( , , #Pronun ...
(1853–1890) was an avid student of color theory. He used violet in many of his paintings of the 1880s, including his paintings of irises and the swirling and mysterious skies of his starry night paintings, and often combined it with its
complementary color Complementary colors are pairs of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native ...
, yellow. In his painting of his bedroom in Arles (1888), he used several sets of complementary colors; violet and yellow, red and green, and orange and blue. In a letter about the painting to his brother Theo, he wrote, "The color here...should be suggestive of sleep and repose in general....The walls are a pale violet. The floor is of red tiles. The wood of the bed and the chairs are fresh butter yellow, the sheet and the pillows light lemon green. The bedspread bright scarlet. The window green. The bed table orange. The bowl blue. The doors lilac....The painting should rest the head or the imagination." In 1856, a young British chemist named
William Henry Perkin Sir William Henry Perkin (12 March 1838 – 14 July 1907) was a British chemist A chemist (from Greek ''chēm(ía)'' alchemy; replacing ''chymist'' from Medieval Latin Medieval Latin was the form of Latin Latin (, or , ) is a cl ...

William Henry Perkin
was trying to make a synthetic
quinine Quinine is a medication used to treat malaria Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease that affects humans and other animals. Malaria causes symptoms Signs and symptoms are the observed or detectable signs, and experienced sympt ...

quinine
. His experiments produced instead an unexpected residue, which turned out to be the first synthetic
aniline dye Aniline is an organic compound with the chemical formula, formula Carbon, C6Hydrogen, H5Nitrogen, NH2. Consisting of a phenyl group attached to an amino group, aniline is the simplest aromatic amine. It is an industrially significant Commodity che ...
, a deep purple color called
mauveine Mauveine, also known as aniline purple and Perkin's mauve, was one of the first synthetic dyes A dye is a color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or ...
, or abbreviated simply to
mauve Mauve (, ; , ) is a pale purple Purple is any of a variety of color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varietie ...

mauve
(the dye being named after the lighter color of the mallow flower). Used to dye clothes, it became extremely fashionable among the nobility and upper classes in Europe, particularly after Queen Victoria wore a silk gown dyed with mauveine to the Royal Exhibition of 1862. Prior to Perkin's discovery, mauve was a color which only the aristocracy and rich could afford to wear. Perkin developed an industrial process, built a factory, and produced the dye by the ton, so almost anyone could wear mauve. It was the first of a series of modern industrial dyes which completely transformed both the chemical industry and fashion. File:Musée Fabre expo. Jean Ranc48 Ranc Jean infant Charles.jpg, Charles de Bourbon, the future King Carlos III of Spain (1725). File:Arthur Hughes - April Love - Google Art Project.jpg, In England, pre-Raphaelite painters like Arthur Hughes (artist), Arthur Hughes were particularly enchanted by purple and violet. This is ''April Love (painting), April Love'' (1856). File:Whistler James Nocturne Trafalgar Square Chelsea Snow 1876.jpg, ''Nocturne: Trafalgar Square Chelsea Snow'' (1876) by James McNeill Whistler, used violet to create a wintery mood. File:VanGogh-starry night.jpg, ''The Starry Night'', by
Vincent van Gogh Vincent Willem van Gogh (; 30 March 185329 July 1890) was a Dutch Post-Impressionist painter who posthumously became one of the most famous and influential figures in Western art ''; by Johannes Vermeer Johannes Vermeer ( , , #Pronun ...
(1889), Museum of Modern Art.


20th and 21st centuries

Violet or purple neckties became popular at the end of the first decade of the 21st century, particularly among political and business leaders.


In culture


Cultural associations


In Western culture


=Popularity of the color

= *In Europe and America, violet is not a popular color; in a European survey, only three percent of men and women rated it as their favorite color, ranking it behind blue, green, red, black and yellow (in that order), and tied with orange. Ten percent of respondents rated it their least favorite color; only brown, pink and gray were more unpopular.


=The color of royalty and luxury

= *Because of its status as the color of Roman emperors, and as a color worn by monarchs and princes, the colors purple and violet are often associated with luxury. Certain luxury goods, such as watches and jewelry, are often placed in boxes lined with violet velvet, since violet is the complementary color of yellow, and shows gold to best advantage.


=Vanity, extravagance, and individualism

= *While violet is the color of humility in the symbolism of the Catholic Church, it has exactly the opposite meaning in general society. A European poll in 2000 showed it was the color most commonly associated with vanity. As a color that rarely exists in nature, and a color which by its nature attracts attention, it is seen as a color of individualism and extravagance.


=Ambiguity and ambivalence

= *Surveys show that violet and purple are the colors most associated with ambiguity and ambivalence.


In Asian culture

*In Japan, violet was a popular color introduced into Japanese dress during the Heian Period (794–1185). The dye was made from the root of the alkanet plant (Anchusa officinalis), known as ''murasaki'' in Japanese. At about the same time, Japanese painters began to use a pigment made from the same plant.


New Age

*The "New Age Prophetess", Alice Bailey, in her system called the Seven Rays which classifies humans into seven different metaphysical psychological types, the "seventh ray" of "Ceremonial Order" is represented by the color violet. People who have this metaphysical psychological type are said to be "on the Violet Ray". *In the Ascended Master Teachings, the color violet is used to represent the Ascended Master St. Germain (Theosophy), St. Germain."St. Germain" (Channeling (mediumistic), dictated through Elizabeth Clare Prophet) ''Studies in Alchemy: the Science of Self-Transformation'' 1974:Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA Summit Lighthouse Pages 80–90 [Occult] Biographical sketch of St. Germain **''The Invocation of the Violet Flame'' is a system of meditation practice used in the "I AM" Activity and by the Church Universal and Triumphant (both Ascended Master Teaching religions).


Religion

*In the Roman Catholic church, violet is worn by
bishop A bishop is an ordained, consecrated, or appointed member of the Clergy#Christianity, Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight. Within the Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Moravian Chu ...

bishop
s and archbishops, red by Cardinal (Catholicism), cardinals, and white by the Pope. Ordinary priests wear black. *In the Roman Catholic and many other Western Christianity, Western churches, violet is the Liturgical colours, liturgical color of Advent and Lent, which respectively celebrate the expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Crucifixion of Jesus and the time for penance and/or mourning. *There is a stained glass window created in the early 1920s in the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Los Angeles depicting God the Father in Western art, God the Father wearing a violet robe. *After the Vatican II Council, which modified many of the rules of the Catholic church, priests began to wear violet robes when celebrating masses for the dead. Black was no longer used, since it was the color of mourning outside the church, and was felt to be inappropriate in a religious ceremony. *In
Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian religion Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the religions that originated in the Indian subcontinent. These religions, which include Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, ...

Hinduism
, violet is used to symbolically represent the seventh, crown chakra (Sahasrara).


Politics

*In the early 20th century, violet, white, and gold were the colors of the Women's suffrage in the United States, women's suffrage movement in the United States, seeking the right to vote for women. The colors were said to represent liberty and dignity. For this reason, the postage stamp issued in 1936 to honor Susan B. Anthony, a prominent leader of the suffrage movement in the United States, was colored the reddish tone of violet sometimes known as red-violet. *In 1908, Emmeline Pethick-Lawrence, co-editor of the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) newspaper, designed the color scheme for the suffragette movement in Britain and Ireland, with violet for loyalty and dignity, white for purity, and green for hope. *The pan-European identity, pan-European movement Volt Europa, and its national subsidiary parties are using violet as a uniform design. *There is a small New Age political party in Germany with about 1,150 members called ''The Violet Party''. The party believes in direct democracy, a guaranteed minimum income, and that politics should be based on Spirituality, spiritual values. "The Violet Party" was founded in Dortmund, Germany in 2001.


Social movement

Violet flowers and their color became symbolically associated with lesbian love. It was used as a LGBT symbols#Violets, special code by lesbians and bisexual women for self-identification and also to communicate support for the sexual preference. This connection originates from the poet Sappho and fragments of her poems. In one poem, she describes a lost love wearing a garland of "violet tiaras, braided rosebuds, dill and crocus twined around" her neck. In another fragment, she recalls her lover as having "put around yourself [many wreaths] of violets and roses."


Flags


See also

*List of colors *Purple *Shades of violet


References

* * * * * * * * *


External links

* {{DEFAULTSORT:Violet (Color) Optical spectrum Secondary colors Tertiary colors Rainbow colors Shades of violet