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[vur-mil, -meyl or especially for 2, ver-mey] /ˈvɜr mɪl, -meɪl or especially for 2, vərˈmeɪ/
vermilion red.
metal, as silver or bronze, that has been gilded.
of the color vermilion.
1350-1400; Middle English < Middle French < Late Latin vermiculus kermes (insect and dye), Latin: larva, grub; see vermicule Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for vermeil
  • Gold vermeil sculpture of a palm tree with three antelopes grazing beneath it, on a wooden base covered with freshwater pearls.
  • Faceted garnets sparkle against a gold-vermeil hoop.
  • The spout, fashioned in the face and neck of a swan, vermeil.
British Dictionary definitions for vermeil


gilded silver, bronze, or other metal, used esp in the 19th century
  1. vermilion
  2. (as adjective): vermeil shoes
Word Origin
C15: from Old French, from Late Latin vermiculus insect (of the genus Kermes) or the red dye prepared from it, from Latin: little worm
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for vermeil

"bright-red;" c.1400, from Anglo-French and Old French vermail (11c. in Old French), from Late Latin vermiculus "a little worm," specifically, the cochineal insect from which crimson dyes were obtained (cf. kermes), in classical Latin, "larva of an insect, grub, maggot," diminutive of vermis "worm" (see worm (n.)). As an adjective from 1580s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for vermeil

gilded silver produced either by the fire-gilding method or by electrolysis. In the former, earlier method the object is covered with an amalgam of gold and mercury; the mercury evaporates when the piece is fired, leaving a gold deposit. In the latter method, the silver object is wired as the cathode and a bar of gold as the anode, and both are immersed in an electrolytic solution; when an electric current is passed, gold ions are deposited on the silver object (cathode). After fire-gilding or electrolysis, the silver gilt is burnished, usually with a polished agate stone

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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