from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A reddish-orange pigment, mercuric sulfide (HgS), originally derived from cinnabar.
  • noun The colour of this pigment.
  • noun The red skin of the lip or its border with the skin of the face.
  • adjective Having such a colour.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective of a vivid red to reddish-orange color


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • Oddly enough, I first ran across this word in my philately days, not in an erotic novel. You'd be surprised how many postage stamps have official coloration: vermillion! Thus I didn't have to consult a dictionary when I did discover it in racy literature... ;oD

    September 15, 2007

  • The Windhover

    To Christ Our Lord

    I CAUGHT this morning morning’s minion, king-

    dom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding

    Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding

    High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing

    In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing,

    As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding

    Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding

    Stirred for a bird,—the achieve of; the mastery of the thing!

    Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here

    Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion

    Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

    No wonder of it: shéer plód makes plough down sillion

    Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,

    Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.

    Gerald Manley Hopkins

    April 25, 2008

  • One of my favorite poems (in fact, I think I posted it here somewhere). Thanks, sionnach.

    April 25, 2008

  • "In 'Paint-by-Number' how many zeroes in a vermillion?" --from a Frazz cartoon

    April 10, 2010

  • "He was lost in in a wash of ruby and vermillion..." The Shack and WM Paul

    October 1, 2010

  • This word is so pleasing to the ear.

    October 13, 2014