Kory Stamper, one of the lexicographers responsible for Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, describes the pleasures and poetry to be found in the Third Edition’s “color definitions.” Take vermillion for example, which is listed as “a variable color averaging a vivid reddish orange that is redder, darker, and slightly stronger than chrome orange, redder and darker than golden poppy, and redder and lighter than international orange.” (Related: how colors got their names; who names colors what.)
Nick Moran is the social media editor for The Millions. Before leaving the publishing industry, he worked for Norton, John Wiley & Sons, and Oxford University Press. Currently he lives in Baltimore, where he works for the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. His interests can be followed on his Tumblr, Nick Recommends and Twitter, @nemoran3.
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