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Part travelogue, part narrative history, Colour unlocks the history of the colours of the rainbow, and reveals how paints came to be invented, discovered, traded and used. This remarkable book remembers a time when red paint was really the colour of blood, when orange was the poison pigment, blue as expensive as gold, and yellow made from the urine of cows force-fed with mangoes. It looks at how green was carried by yaks along the silk road, and how an entire nation was founded on the colour purple.

Exciting, richly informative and always surprising, Colour lifts the lid on the historical palette and unearths an astonishing wealth of stories about the quest for colours, and our efforts to understand them.
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Genre: Lifestyle, Sport & Leisure / Travel & Holiday / Travel Writing

On Sale: 30th December 2014

Price: £12.99

ISBN-13: 9781444719888


It's pure pleasure to join this gutsy arts reporter-cum-scholar on her quest for historical pigments and dyes around the world
You get your money's worth and change to spare . . . Both picaresque and picturesque, it's a rich read.
Evening Standard
A treasure trove of human history and obsession . . . the breadth of research and insight is dazzling.
Glasgow Herald
[Victoria Finlay's] curiosity is inexhaustible, her reading wide, and her writing style a delight
Sunday Telegraph
A highly companionable guide, adventurous and romantic
Independent on Sunday
Full of forgotten facts and beguiling anecdotes . . . it would be hard to confront a painting ever again without seeing in it a kind of coded map of the world
Daily Telegraph
Packed with stories, anecdotes and adventures. A full rainbow . . . as vivid as the colours themselves
Daily Express