Green

Green is a color seen commonly in nature. Plants are green because they contain chlorophyll.

Green light has a wavelength of around 550 nm and is one of the additive primary colors.

On a browser that supports visual formatting in Cascading Style Sheets, the following box should appear a shade of green:

Distinguishing "Green" in language

The English language makes a distinction between blue and green, but some languages, such as Tarahumara, Japanese, Vietnamese, and Toki Pona (note: not a natural language), don't have a separate word for green and use either the word for yellow or the word for blue to describe the color. Most of the time, Chinese language has the blue-green distinction, but another word, qing (青 in pinyin: qing1), used most often in premodern Chinese, can mean either "blue" or "green" or, much less frequently, "black", as in xuanqing (玄青 xuan2 qing1).

"Green" as a symbol

The ecology movement uses green because of its common occurrence in nature. Greenpeace, an ecological group, uses green because of its association with life. Those who carry this into the political realm are called "Greens":

There are political parties named the Green Parties in over one hundred countries throughout the world (beginning in Europe, although the Green Party of the United States and many state parties and two prominent provincial parties in Canada - in Ontario and BC have taken root). The more generic term "green party" is used for parties that emphasize environmentalism, but it is increasingly out of favour as the Global Greens have succeeded in uniting almost all such parties under a Global Green Charter.

Green is the traditional color of Islam, likewise because of its association with nature. Muhammad is reliably quoted in a hadith as saying that "water, greenery, and a beautiful face" were three universally good things.

Green is also the color of supporters of Taiwan independence in opposition to the unification leaning pan-blue coalition. The origin of this symbolism comes from Taiwan being a tropical island.

Green also symbolizes go because of its use in traffic signals. It is also the color of informational and directional signs.

In North American stock markets, green is used to denote a rise in stock prices. In East Asian stock markets, green is used to denote a drop in stock prices.

Because of its camouflage properties, green is typically used for the field uniforms for many military services. It is also used as the dress uniform for many land armies and marines.

"Little Green Men" refers to the stereotypical portrayal of extraterrestrials with green skin, antennae and a generally human body plan (but with the number of a certain body part often changed).

Colloquial expressions

  • Envy, one of the traditional Seven Deadly Sins is also called the Green-eyed monster. A person suffering therefrom is said to be "green with envy"
  • Traditionally, someone who works well with plants is said to have a green thumb, or green fingers.
  • A new, inexperienced rookie is also known as green, probably from its reference to unripe (i.e. unready, immature) fruit.


People who are red-green colour blind can not distinguish between the two colours.
A green is an area of grassyy common land at the centre of a town or village (see village green).
A putting green is the area of well-manicured grass surrounding each hole on a golf course.
People with Green as their surname include


At Stanford University, "Green" means the Cecil H. Green Library.

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