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Heading textEdit

The article says

It is also the name of the typical color of the pigment, which is a bright but somewhat lighter and very slightly orange shade.

which makes very little sense to me. Any suggestions? --Phil | Talk 14:58, Apr 7, 2005 (UTC)

I guess it is missing the word 'red', as in;
It is also the name of the typical color of the pigment, which is a bright red, but somewhat lighter and very slightly orange shade.
On the other hand, I think we can probably write a better entry. -- Solipsist 19:25, 7 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Color codesEdit

Where do the color codes come from? I haven't been able to find any reliable source on the Web. Yes, I found pages claiming that vermilion is such and such in RGB/CMYK/HSV, but no evidence to back that up.

- so, you've found pages on the internet, but nothing reliable enough to be a source? that sucks. but since I don't think there's a governing body with the authority to dictate which physical colours have which names, I'd say that we have to accept that this is a de facto standard, and provide links to a fair number of the pages you found. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:03, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

The closest thing to a standard in RGB-land are the 140 X11/SVG/CSS color names that most web browsers understand (plus orthographic variants). No vermilion though. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:21, 9 August 2008 (UTC)

Red or Orange?Edit

Is vermilion a red pigment, or an orange one. All I know is that it is my most favorite color. When I was 5 people used to call me Orange. So I hope Vermilion belongs to the orange family. I've read on encarta that it is a red pigment.

Traditionally, in an artist's pallette, I think Vermilion has always been considered a red. But it is quite an orange red. Cadmium red is a cheaper stronger red used today, which would give you the wiggle room to call vermilion an 'orange-red used by purists'. -- Solipsist 19:01, 28 July 2005 (UTC)

Updated color codesEdit

      Color coordinates
Hex triplet#E34234
sRGBB  (rgb)(227, 66, 52)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k)(0, 71, 77, 11)
HSV       (h, s, v)(5°, 77.1%, 89%)
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

I've updated the color codes based on these actual spectral measurements of genuine Vermillion pigment: The author is quite thourough, and his data can be trusted. I'll update a few other pigment pages with similar color codes. The color codes started with CIEL*a*b, and were converted to sRGB based on the 10 degree observer and D65 whitepoint assumptions, and are designed for a monitor gamma of 2.2. If you change the values, please have a source based on actual measurements. It would probably be appropriate to add a few additional colors as well, to indicate different hues of different types of vermillion (since it can vary so much from source to source), if anyone has some measurements of their own. Phidauex 20:50, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

Mercurid iodideEdit

Following paragraph was removed because it's not about vermilion:

Another red mercury pigment, mercuric iodide, briefly sold in the 19th century to artists as "Scarlet Lake" and "Iodide Scarlet" is more vivid than either vermilion or cadmium red, but it is very light sensitive and few artists used it. One who did was J. M. W. Turner, an artist infamous for his use of even the most fugitive paints. His response to criticism from a paint dealer was to point out that he was not the one who produced the paints.

Mercury compounds toxicEdit

Is it really the case that all other mercury compounds are toxic? No inert compounds at all with mercury? Would it be more cautious to say "most" or "most common" instead of "all"? (talk) 15:54, 29 April 2008 (UTC)


The words for the color red in Portuguese vermelho and Catalan vermell derive from this term. Wouldn't it make more sense to say that vermilion, vermeil, vermelho, vermell share a common root, namely Latin vermiculus "little worm" which refers to another pigment, cochineal and the insect from which it is made? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:07, 9 August 2008 (UTC)

DEC documentationEdit

FWIW, I was at DEC Educational Services in the early 80's, and ran the VAX Resource Center at MIT for most of the rest of the 80's, and I never read or heard the binders referred to as "China Red" but always as "Terracotta." The color was more toward orange with a bit of brown than a true vermillion, and far far far from a cinnabar red. --Shava23 (talk) 00:51, 4 March 2009 (UTC)

Vermilion in the Old TestamentEdit

Verycurios added the following to the history of the process of manufacturing vermilion from mercury and sulfur:

Also the earliest description of the process dates back to 590 B.C as it is recorded in the Bible from the book of Jeremiah "...and it is ceiled or paneled with cedar and painted with vermilion" (Jer 22:14).

However, this Biblical reference does not say anything about the process of manufacture.

The word translated here as "vermilion" (in the KJV Bible) is the Hebrew shashar [ששר]. This is defined in the KJV Old Testament Hebrew Lexicon as "red colour, vermilion formerly gained from 'kermes' insect ". Strong's Concordance speculates that the word may be derived from the Hebrew word for 'red ochre'. In neither case does this refer to the mercury-based vermilion dye. Why does the KJV use the word "vermilion"? The context of this passage is God rebukeing Shallum, son of King Josiah, for adopting a privileged royal lifestyle without taking on the corresponding royal responsibilities. The phrase "painted with vermilion" is intended to represent indulgent luxury. At the time of the KJV translation, vermilion was a very expensive commodity, largely reserved for the nobility and the highest officers of the Church, and was thus an entirely appropriate choice of translation.

On the basis of this analysis, I shall remove the above addition. FredV (talk) 10:35, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

Please Fix the Vulgar Language!Edit

Someone needs to fix the '******s are bad people' that repeats 2000 times, I dunno how to. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:00, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

inconsistency in the historyEdit

early it states that the romans knew it as minium then later it is stated that minium was an adulterant. in wikipedia minium redirects to lead tetroxide. can the person who wrote the first statement include the reference, together with a suitable rewording, or retract the assertion. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:09, 20 March 2011 (UTC)


Is it one "l" or two "ll"? Ver-milion or Ver-million? The disabiguation page says that "vermillion" with two "ll" is a misspelling, but the Vermillion page simply says it's an alternative spelling for vermilion. Which is it? (talk) 21:18, 14 November 2011 (UTC)

Not a misspelling, but a variant, according to /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 22:21, 14 November 2011 (UTC)

Section "Sunny orange" / new references to "COLOURlovers"Edit

For the named "Colour Lovers" in the articles text there exists the wikipedia article "COLOURlovers".
I'm not definitely sure, if all occurences should been adapted to "COLOURlovers" ...?
Jaybear (talk) 17:41, 5 January 2012 (UTC)


"For safety reasons the mercury in this formula has recently been replaced with cadmium, yielding a similar range of hues, although cadmium carries severe hazards of its own." I think this is misleading. It may give a impression that replacing one atom with another is as easy as replacing bike wheels and doesn't alter the compound's properties. Cadmium red was invented on its own in the 1800s. Harjasusi (talk) 14:20, 17 May 2012 (UTC)

Quite right - it is not that cadmium has replaced mercury in the formula for vermilion, but that (in some applications) cadmium red has replaced the (marginally more toxic) vermilion. I shall modify the article. FredV (talk) 14:40, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
Return to "Vermilion" page.