Word for Wednesday: Pink

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In February, we are continuing with the Word for Wednesday theme of colours

The word colour entered English via Old French and comes from the Latin ‘color’, from the Old Latin ‘colos’ meaning ‘a covering’, from the PIE root ‘kel-’ meaning ‘to conceal’. The word has been used in reference to skin colour since the early-thirteenth century and in reference to pigments and dye since the fourteenth century. 

The spelling colour became the common English spelling from the fourteenth century, but a classical correction made color an alternative from the fifteenth century. Color is now the common American English spelling of this word. 

So far we’ve looked at the words redorangeyellowgreen, blue, and purple. Today’s word is pink

Pink is made by mixing red with white. It is the colour of cherry blossoms, salmon, and flamingos. Like red, the word is sometimes used to describe someone who is blushing. 

Pink has been used as the common name for the Dianthus plant which often has pink flowers since the1570s. The word was first used to describe the colour in 1733. Another earlier name for pink in English was incarnation meaning ‘flesh colour’. This word dates to the mid-fourteenth century and comes from the Latin word for flesh. The carnation flower is also named for its resemblance to the colour of flesh. 

17 Feb 2021
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