- A bright bluish-green encrustation or patina formed on copper or brass by atmospheric oxidation, consisting of basic copper carbonate.
“The chemistry class learned about oxidation by studying how verdigris formed on copper plates.”
“The brass lanterns had acquired a layer of verdigris in the 20 years they lit the path to the main hall.”
“My favorite color is the exact shade of verdigris on the copper fountain in the garden.”
Old French, early 14th century
Why this word?
Picture the Statue of Liberty — that bluish-green tinge on the famous lady is verdigris, a chemical reaction that forms from the oxidation of copper or brass. The English word “verdigris” comes from the Old French “verte-gres,” or “green of Greece.” Another greenish hue has a similar etymology: “Turquoise” comes from the Old French “turqueise,” meaning “Turkish stone.”
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