Where the names of colours came from

Some of these are quite amazing, and in some cases a little bizarre:

— Azure is a misspelling of the Latin word “lazur” which comes from the stone “lapis lazuli”

— Orchid is Greek for “testicle”

— Turquoise means “Turkish” in Old French because that’s where the mineral came from

— Magenta is named for a battle during the Second Italian War of Independence

— Porcelain comes from the Latin term for “young pig,” because the colour was supposedly similar to the colour of a young pig’s genitalia

— Vermillion comes from the Latin for “small worm” because that’s where the dye of that colour originally came from (similar for Crimson)

— Persimmon comes from a Powhatan word that means “he dries berries”

— Sepia comes from the Latin word for “cuttlefish” because the color originally came from cuttlefish secretions

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