Puce

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PuceHow to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
sRGBB  (rgb) (114, 47, 55)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0, 59, 52, 55)
HSV       (h, s, v) (353°, 59%, 45[1]%)
Source ISCC-NBS
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

Puce (variant spellings: "puse", "peuse" or "peuce") is a dark red or purple brown color,[2] a brownish purple [3][4] or a dark reddish brown.[5]

Etymology[edit]

Puce is the French word for flea. The color is said to be the color of the bloodstains remaining on linen or bedsheets, even after being laundered, from a flea's droppings or after a flea has been crushed.

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) dates the first English use of "puce" as a color to 1787.[6] The name comes from the French word puce, or flea, which comes from the Latin words for flea, pulicem or pulex. According to the Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology, the first French use of puce as a color name, meaning "flea-color," dates to the 17th century.[7] A different source dates the first French use of puce as a color name to the 14th century.[8]

History[edit]

The color puce became popular in the late 18th century in France. It was worn at the Court of Louis XVI, and was said to be a favorite color of Marie Antoinette, though there are no portraits of her wearing it.

Puce was also a popular fashion color in 19th century Paris. In one of his novels, Émile Zola described a woman "dressed in a gown of a dark color...between puce and the color of goose excrement (caca d'oie)."[9]

Lately, the tones of puce have become popular among those in the Goth subculture.

Variations of puce[edit]

Puce (ISCC-NBS)[edit]

Puce (ISCC-NBS)How to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #722F37
sRGBB  (rgb) (114, 47, 55)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0, 59, 52, 55)
HSV       (h, s, v) (353°, 59%, 45[1]%)
Source ISCC-NBS
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

The color to the right is the color called puce in the ISCC-NBS Dictionary of Color Names (1955). Since this color has a hue code of 353, it is a slightly purplish red.

The source of this color is: ISCC-NBS Dictionary of Color Names (1955)--Color Sample of Puce (color sample #16)


Puce (Maerz and Paul)[edit]

Puce (M&P)How to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #A95C68
sRGBB  (rgb) (169, 92, 104)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0, 46, 39, 34)
HSV       (h, s, v) (351°, 46%, 66[10]%)
Source Maerz and Paul
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

The color box to the right shows the color called puce in the 1930 book by Maerz and Paul A Dictionary of Color New York:1930 McGraw-Hill; the color puce is displayed on page 37, Plate 7, Color Sample H4.

Puce (Poupre color list)[edit]

Puce (Pourpre color list)How to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #4E1609
sRGBB  (rgb) (78, 22, 9)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0, 72, 89, 69)
HSV       (h, s, v)

(11°, 89%, 31

[11]%)
Source Pourpre.com
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

At right is displayed the color called puce in the Pourpre.com color list, a color list widely popular in France. This is the original color "puce" from which all the other tones of puce are ultimately derived.[citation needed]

Puce (Pantone)[edit]

Puce (Pantone)How to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #4F3A3C
sRGBB  (rgb) (79, 58, 60)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0, 27, 24, 69)
HSV       (h, s, v) (354°, 27%, 31[12]%)
Source Pantone TPX[13]
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

The color at right is called puce in the Pantone color list.

The source of this color is the "Pantone Textile Paper eXtended (TPX)" color list, color #19-1518 TPX—Puce.[14]

In popular culture[edit]

Bottle collecting

  • In the vintage-bottle-collecting hobby, "puce" is amongst the most desirable colours.[15]

Comics

  • A collection of Walt Kelly's influential Pogo comics was called "The Pogo Puce Stamp Catalog". It had a puce cover.
  • In the Dilbert comic strip, the boss's favorite color is puce, but he does not know that because he is mistakenly thinking of a primary color, as he does not know what puce is.[16]

Games

  • In the computer game NetHack, potions are randomly generated with different colors or other descriptions, and one of the colors is puce.
  • In the board/card game The Great Khan Game by Tom Wham and Richard Hamblen, issued by TSR, Inc., there is a mercenary card called "Admiral of the Puce Oliver Hazerdous".
  • In the sandbox computer game Dwarf Fortress, procedurally generated monsters can be attributed the color puce.
  • In the computer game Stronghold Crusader, a randomly generated name of an adversary "the Rat" is sometimes "Duc de Puce".

Film

  • Kenneth Anger directed a short film called Puce Moment (1949).
  • Spencer Tracy's character in the romantic comedy film Desk Set (1957) is on the telephone taking down a coworker's message for a "black velvet strapless..with what kind of a scarf.."Puce?!!"..I know how to spell it."
  • The fantasy film Santa Claus: The Movie (1985) referenced "puce" for the color the magic lollipops that made children fly, including a humorous remark about it: "If this ever takes off, we could make this in liquid form: Puce Juice."
  • In the made-for-TV movie Dance 'til Dawn (1988), the prom theme is "Paris in Puce."[17] The theme is chosen by Christina Applegate's character, who also wears a puce gown, so that she can be "the only girl here who goes with the room."[18]
  • In the 2001 Pixar film Monsters, Inc., Mike Wazowski pleads with James P. "Sulley" Sullivan to finish his scare-floor paperwork so Mike could make his date with Celia. Sulley agrees and discovers "puce" as one of the colors of the forms to be filled out. The puce folder is supposed to be left by Sullivan.
  • In the comedy horror film Fright Night (2011), Anton Yelchin's character wears collector's shoes referred to as being puce-colored, with Colin Farrell's character proclaiming that "it takes a real man to wear puce".[19]

History

Literature

Music

  • In the song "A more humane Mikado (Let the Punishment Fit the Crime)" in the comic opera The Mikado (1885) by Gilbert and Sullivan, the title character sings of the dire fate of the woman "who stains her gray hair puce".
  • In the song "I Love to Color" from his children's album Pockets, Joe Wise talks at length about the characteristics and uses of the color puce.
  • In the song "Hi and Lo" by the jam band Moe, there is the line "Red and Blue, Pink and Puce. There's six million hues to choose from".

Television

  • In the animated comedy television series The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show (1959–1964), Bullwinkle refers to his high school's colors as pomegranate and puce.
  • In episode 18, "I Was a Teenage Monster" (1967), of the situation comedy television series The Monkees (1966–1968), Richard Kiel's character, after a failed attempt to reverse a mad scientist's brain experiment on him, takes on the characteristics of an interior designer and says: "I would do this room in French Provincial. The color scheme should be lavender and puce."
  • In the PBS kids television show Cyberchase (2002–2010), antagonist "The Hacker" often refers to puce as his favorite color, being the shade of choice for both his space ship and cape.
  • In the episode "Comet Kermilian" (2008) of the Disney Channel animated comedy television series Phineas and Ferb (since 2008), Linda references having a puce awareness ribbon for Antidisestablishmentarianism.
  • In episode 26 of The Golden Girls, Rose proclaims Blanche's pregnancy test to be puce in color, and that she once had drapes that color.
  • In the episode of Diff'rent Strokes "The Model", a commentator for a fashion show says that an outfit being modeled is available in blue, green, and puce. Arnold says, "What's puce?" and Mr. Drummond responds, "Expensive purple."
  • In an episode of the 1960s American TV show The Man from U.N.C.L.E., the protagonist, superspy Napoleon Solo, enters a fashionable women's clothing store while chasing an enemy agent. The store clerk, a woman, asks "Can I help you with anything, Sir?" He says "I'd like to see something in ... puce." She went off to check and Solo continued on.
  • In Chowder, a one time character mentions her husband being allergic to the color puce.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b web.forret.com Color Conversion Tool set to hex code #722F37 (Puce Red):
  2. ^ Oxford English Dictionaries on-line
  3. ^ Webster's New World Dictionary, Third College Edition: "a brownish purple."
  4. ^ Random House College Dictionary: "a dark or brownish purple"
  5. ^ "Brun rouge assez foncé." Le Petit Robert (1988).
  6. ^ Oxford English Dictionary See entry on Puce
  7. ^ The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology, (1966) Oxford University Press
  8. ^ Maerz and Paul A Dictionary of Color New York:1930 McGraw-Hill Page 202; Color Sample of Puce: Page 37 Plate 7 Color Sample H4--the color sample shown as puce in Maerz & Paul is a tone of puce halfway between the U.S. and U.K. versions of puce: Puce (Maerz & Paul)
  9. ^ "Vétue d'une robe sobre...entre le puce et le caca d'oie." Le Petit Robert.
  10. ^ web.forret.com Color Conversion Tool set to hex code #A95C68 (Deep Puce):
  11. ^ web.forret.com Color Conversion Tool set to hex code #4E1609 (French Puce):
  12. ^ web.forret.com Color Conversion Tool set to hex code of color #4F3A3C (Dark Puce):
  13. ^ Type the word "Puce" into the indicated window on the Pantone Color Finder and the color will appear.
  14. ^ Pantone TPX Pantone Color Finder--Type the word "Puce" into the indicated window on the Pantone Color Finder and the color will appear:
  15. ^ von Mechow, Tod (September 30, 2010). "Bottle Attributes – Beer Bottle Colors". Soda & Beer Bottles of North America. Retrieved October 18, 2011. 
  16. ^ Adams, Scott (c). Dilbert. August 17, 1993. Official Dilbert comic strips Archive.
  17. ^ "Topic: Puce". eNotes. Retrieved December 2, 2011. 
  18. ^ Panarese, Tom (April 27, 2011). "Dance 'til Dawn". Pop Culture Affidavit. Retrieved December 2, 2011. 
  19. ^ Beifuss, John (August 19, 2011). "'Fright Night' - A Review: Never Cross a Vampire". The Bloodshot Eye. Retrieved December 2, 2011. 
  20. ^ Victoria Finlay, Color.
  21. ^ Smith, Bret (December 25, 2008). "Paladin (Part 3C) – The Knights of the Round Table (con't)". The Grumblin' Grognard. Retrieved December 3, 2011. 
  22. ^ Search result, Puce Knight: Sir Thomas Malory; Keith Baines (October 12, 2001). Malory's Le Morte D'Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table : The Classic Rendition. Penguin. pp. 146, 147, 149, 152, 159. ISBN 978-0-451-52816-2. Retrieved December 3, 2011. 
  23. ^ Don Gifford with Robert J. Seidman, Ulysses Annotated: Notes for James Joyce's Ulysses, 2nd Edition, University of California Press, 1989, p. 22.