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or vermillion

[ver-mil-yuh n] /vərˈmɪl yən/
a brilliant scarlet red.
a bright-red, water-insoluble pigment consisting of mercuric sulfide, once obtained from cinnabar, now usually produced by the reaction of mercury and sulfur.
of the color vermilion.
verb (used with object)
to color with or as if with vermilion.
Origin of vermilion
1250-1300; Middle English vermilioun, vermillon < Anglo-French, Old French verm(e)illon, equivalent to vermeil vermeil + -on noun suffix Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for vermillion
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Their plates were scarred and patched with daubs of vermillion.

    A Yankee Flier with the R.A.F. Rutherford G. Montgomery
  • He has taken up the curb two links, and vermillion bates that.

  • Colors green and brown and saffron and orange and pink and vermillion and russet cover every rock until the scene is bewildering.

    Then and Now Robert Vaughn
  • They consist of copies of inscriptions found by me on the vermillion.

  • Put some vermillion on your palette, and warm up those cheeks; touch in those little brown spots; come, butter it well in.

    Pierre Grassou Honore de Balzac
  • Both vermillion and Vermilion were used and retained in this text.

  • By the vermillion pencil itself, Chow cares not for liberty, if they ruin his noble master.

    The War Tiger Wiliam Dalton
British Dictionary definitions for vermillion


  1. a bright red to reddish-orange colour
  2. (as adjective): a vermilion car
mercuric sulphide, esp when used as a bright red pigment; cinnabar
Word Origin
C13: from Old French vermeillon, from vermeil
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for vermillion



late 13c., "cinnabar, red dye," from Anglo-French and Old French vermeillon, from vermeil (see vermeil). As an adjective, from 1580s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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