Meaning Of Purple: Color Psychology And Symbolism (2023)

Where do we find the meaning of purple? Can we consult the regal robes of wealthy rulers of old? Is purple the resplendent glory of summer revealed by the iris in full bloom? Is purple the whimsical hue favored by unicorns and fairies? Purple delights us in many forms.

Meaning Of Purple: Explained

That book was nothing more than purple prose.

The purple of kings.

Purple is royal. It’s elaborate, replete with the trappings of majesty and ceremony. It’s the favorite color of adolescent girls, and it’s the color of fantasy and magic. It’s half-blue, half-red, and our understanding of purple lies somewhere in between the serenity of blue and the passion of red.

What do we know about purple?

Physical Effects

Purple both calms and stimulates our bodies, putting us in the right place for introspection and focused insight. It fosters creativity by awakening our senses while promoting the quiet necessary to make intuitive, insightful observations. Purple creates a harmonious balance of awareness and peace.

Purple fosters creativity by awakening our senses while promoting the quiet necessary to make intuitive, insightful observations.

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Symbolism And Meaning Of Purple

Purple has long been associated with wealth and royalty, as purple dye was precious and expensive. If green is the color of spring, then purple conjures up autumn, fading light, and shorter days. Purple is insouciant–associated with creativity and irreverence (as in the Purple Hat groups of women who embrace aging as an excuse to flout convention.) Purple also represents harmony–the balance between opposing forces.

Meaning Of Purple: Color Psychology And Symbolism (1)

Meaning Of Purple: Color Psychology And Symbolism (2)

Positive Associations

Purple is cheerful–whimsical and playful. It’s associated with an escape from reality and magical images. Purple is often a statement of independence as it’s not abasic, primary color, and it’s often a sign of fusing the mundane with the innovative. Purple is also associated with bravery, and the Purple Heart is awarded to members of the armed forces who are injured in the line of duty. Professional uses of purple convey high value and lofty goals.

Purple is cheerful–whimsical and playful. It’s associated with an escape from reality and magical images.

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Negative Associations

As purple lives balanced between red and blue, it can be seen as an unstable, non-traditional color. Notions of royalty and ceremony can be off-putting to more democratic sensibilities, and purple can convey feelings of arrogance and condescension. Purple used professionally can feel a bit unsettled and therefore uncomfortable.

Violet Chakra Color

Chakras are energy centers within the body that help to regulate all its processes. Each chakra governs specific functions and is represented by one of the seven chakra colors.

Violet: (purple) is the color of the Crown chakra, also known as Sahasrara. This chakra is located at the top of the head. The Crown chakra is linked to the crown of the head, nervous system, and the brain, and is representative of pure thought. This chakra connects one with the infinite consciousness. Opening this chakra will help tap into a deep spiritual understanding. Gemstones that will aid the Crown chakra include diamond and clear quartz.

Purple Birthstone Color

Color Morsels

Though it’s commonly said there’s no word in English that rhymes with "purple," there are, in fact, two words (albeit obscure ones) that do: "hirple," meaning to walk with a limp, and "curple," meaning the hindquarters of a horse.

Purple Day, observed on March 26 of each year, was created in 2008 to promote awareness about epilepsy.

The Colorado Rockies–based in Denver–are the only professional baseball team to use purple as one of its team colors. The Rockies wear purple, black, silver, and white.

Purple dye originally came from snails boiled in lead vats. It took many thousands of snails to produce tiny amounts of the precious and expensive dye.

The Purple People Bridge that spans the Ohio River at Cincinnati is one of the few exclusively pedestrian bridges in the nation. It can be rented for special events.

The film The Color Purple, based on Alice Walker’s novel of the same name, was nominated for eleven Academy Awards. Both Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey were nominated for their roles in the film, though it didn’t take home a single award.

Amethyst, the purple gemstone, takes its name from the Greek "a methystos," meaning "not drunk." The gemstone was believed to protect against drunkenness if the stone was held beneath the tongue while consuming alcohol.

In the bible (Acts 16:14), "And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira." Lydia typifies a successful business woman in a prosperous city. Thyatira was conspicuous for its many guilds which were united by common pursuits and religious rites. One of these guilds was that of dyers. The water of the area was so well-adapted for dyeing, that no other place could produce the scarlet cloth out of which fezzes were so brilliantly and so permanently dyed. This unique purple dye brought the city universal renown.

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Epilepsy Awareness Day is observed annually on March 26th. The day has become known as “Purple Day” as people are encouraged to wear the color to increase awareness of Epilepsy.

Read About the Color Purple

Meaning Of Purple: Color Psychology And Symbolism (7)

Meaning Of Purple: Color Psychology And Symbolism (8)

Purple Words, Phrases And Idioms

Examples of how themeaning of purple colors ourlanguage:

Purple prose: a phrase meant to insult or disparage flowery language or an elaborately written poem or paragraph.

Purple heart: a medal awarded to a US soldier wounded in battle

Born to the purple: a person who is born into a noble or royal family

Lay it out in lavender: very cool, relaxed, and in control

Quotes About the Color Purple

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More Intriguing Facts About Purple

Purple As A Signature Color

A signature color is different than a favorite color although for some people they many be one and the same. It is all in how you express yourself with a color and how consistently you wear it or surround yourself with the color that makes it your signature shade.

  • Prince - the music icon loved the color purple - this of his wardrobe, stage set, album and of course, Purple Rain.
  • The State of Minnesota - in 2016, proposed purple as the official state color in honor of the musician Prince; status is currently pending.
  • Red Hat Society Members - inspired by the well-known Jenny Joseph poem, Warning, which begins “When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple, with a red hat which doesn't go and doesn't suit me. ” women in this group can be identified by their purple attire and red hats.
  • Alzheimer’s Association chose purple as a signature color, combining the calm stability of blue and the passionate energy of red. Purple makes a statement about the Association and supporters: we are strong and unrelenting in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease.

Companies & Brands Identified by Purple

  • Crown Royal
  • Nexium
  • Fedex
  • Hallmark
  • Cadbury
  • 80’s Purple
  • Purple Consultancy
  • Purple Labs
  • Yahoo!
  • Monster
  • Epilepsy Awareness
  • SMAS, Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome

Songs With Purple in the Title

  • Pale Purple - Ani DiFranco
  • Purple - Slapshock
  • Purple Haze - Jimi Hendrix
  • The Purple of All Curtains - Tangerine Dream
  • Purple People Eater - Sheb Wooley
  • Purple Rain - Prince
  • Purple Ray Gun - Alexis Shepard
  • Purple Stain - Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Purple Toupee - They Might Be Giants
  • Voices Green and Purple - The Bees
  • Start Wearing Purple - Gogol Bordello
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Color And Our Sense Of Smell: Purple

It’s not just emotion that makes scent powerful. It’s closely tied to your memories, as well. Smell also plays a major role in our ability to taste. When combined with color those connections become even stronger.

  • The scent of lavender has been shown to decrease heart rate and blood pressure, potentially putting you in a more relaxed state according to the National Sleep Foundation. In one study, researchers monitored the brain waves of subjects at night and found that those who sniffed lavender before bed had more deep sleep and felt more vigorous in the morning.Another study of infants found that they cried less and slept more deeply after a bath with lavender scented oils.
  • The purple colored Magic Scents Crayons labeled "Grape" from Binney & Smith Inc. was originally scented to smell like zesty limes. However, after numerous reports that children were "eating" the food-scented crayons the company changed to less tasty options. The scent for the color green became “Lilac.”
  • For perfume makers, "lavender is a plant which in and of itself has an outstanding olfactory quality.” It certainly appears that lavender counts as one of the most ancient elements used in perfumed products.
  • Lavender was immensely popular during the 19th century and introduced men to the world of perfume, heretofore reserved for women, with classic lavender waters such as English Lavender by Atkinson’s and Old English Lavender by Yardley.

Color Taste Connection: Purple

There are five basic groups of taste, which send signals to our brain to interpret flavor. However, we also send signals with our eyes before we take a bite and give our taste buds a chance to process the flavor. The color can pre-determine how we perceive the taste and flavor of what we eat.

  • Purple is a very trendy color and gourmet chefs are always looking for a new vegetables in this color.
  • The “Purple Orchid Three” is a sweet potato grown by its Hainan developers from seeds taken into space in 2005 on China’s “Shenzhou VI” rocket.
  • “Purple Haze” is the only imperator-shaped purple carrot.
  • Eggplant, deeply purple and glossy, adds unique texture and flavor to the taste of purple.
  • Purple grapes include all grapes of this color, one of which is the Concord grape. Concord grapes are native to North America and are of the slip-skin category, whereas most grapes are of the European varieties whose skin is attached to the meat. This allows the latter varieties to be stored in cold rooms, shipped to fresh markets, and eaten as table grapes. -The Concord Grape Association

The Color Purple In The Garden

  • Purple is considered a cool color in landscape design. Its appearance has a calming effect in a garden.
  • Purple plants visually recede in a garden, helping to make a small space feel larger.
  • Purple’s complimentary color in the garden is yellow.

Discover More About The Meaning Of Colors


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