Linguist Rob Watts of RobWords takes a vibrant look at the international etymological origins of the English words for different colors. Watts notes not only where the words come from but some of the fascinating idiosyncrasies behind the naming of the hues.
Find out the etymologies of black, white, gray, blue, brown, green, orange, purples, pink, red and yellow – from their origins thousands of years ago, through Old English and into the present day.
Watts previously addressed the two different spellings of the specific word for these different shades.
…. In the United States of America, fellow stern-faced dictionary peddler Noah Webster was coming up with a shiny new version of English to go with his shiny new nation that had just become independent from Britain. When he wrote his Compendious Dictionary of the English Language he made lots of little tweaks to make American English different to British English. One of the changes he made was to get rid of any letters that he saw as unnecessary.