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Lesson Plans


From: Teri Mason (terily)
Date: Tue Apr 04 2000 - 07:51:12 PDT

  • Next message: Susan Bennett: "Re: color...vermillion"

    vermilion / vermillion [n. ver-MIL-yun]

    The color vermilion is bright red, also known as chinese red or
    cinnabar. There is also the pigment vermilion, which is bright red
    mercuric sulfide, also called cinnabar.

    Another word for bright red color is vermeil, a word imported from Old
    French that happens to also be a root of vermilion. That word came
    out of Latin, from vermiculus (a little worm), the diminutive of
    vermis (worm).

    How did a little worm lead to redness? The worm in question was the
    red larva of a kind of insect (Coccus ilicis) that was used to create
    red dye. This insect, the kermes (oak tree) scale, passed its name
    into Spanish as cremesin, which later passed into English as another
    red color name, crimson.

    The kermes oak is common in the hills of southern France:


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