There are 11 posts.
Back in the 16th century, whitewash was exactly what it sounded like: to wash a wall with some sort of substance in order to make it white. But today, if a company is greenwashing, redwashing, or blackwashing, it isn’t concerned with what colour the new office will be. For -wash, as a combining form, has […]more
In this book quiz, we’ve taken the colour out of books – out of their titles, that is. Some of them are well known, some of them are bit trickier, and none of them have Fifty Shades of anything at all. Whether you write colour or color, the task here is to pick the missing word for […]more
Do you know what the translation for the French taupe is? Or which language has two words for blue? Take our quiz to test your knowledge of colours in language. Photo credit: Natalia Deriabina / Shutterstock.commore
It’s that time again, when we bring you the very latest in additions to the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), and, as usual, we have lexicographical facts and figures coming out of our ears. This quarterly OED update contains around 500 new words, phrases, and senses, spanning a period of nearly 1,100 years in the history […]more
With the release of the much-anticipated film adaptation of the best-selling novel Fifty Shades of Grey on 13 February, we thought that it might be time to take a look in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) and see how many shades of grey we could dig up. As it turns out, the OED gives EL […]more
Although we have a plethora of words in our vocabularies to describe colour, it’s unlikely that we each perceive colour in the same way. What if your red is actually my blue, or my yellow is your green? We may never know if a Parisian’s rouge is identical to a Varsovian’s czerwony, but we can […]more
As Katherine Shaw noted in a rather colourful article for this blog, the origins of the English primary colour names are ultimately either non-referential, in that they aren’t derived from the colour of some previously known entity, or have such long histories that their origins are simply unknown. This, she notes, is in contrast with […]more