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Guest column | Rob DeWitt

Praise for purple, with a passion

Many in Hernando County can attest to the power of purple. My alma maters, one of which will have commencement Tuesday, are schools with this incredible color: Hernando High School ("… waves of purple and gold …'') and Northwestern University ("… Fight, fight, fight, for the purple and white … NU-RAH-RAH!")

In simpler times, purple was known as "violet," after the flower. Like nations, these plants are temperamental and hard to grow but well worth the effort.

For some, purple is just one of many shades in the big 64 Crayola box (with sharpener). But is it more?

From children's books to art classes, everywhere one sees purple. Purple is one of the colors on the wheel used for teaching, with the primary colors being red, blue and yellow. The combination of these primary colors with their neighbors are called secondary colors; purple, orange and green are complimentary colors as well. All of these colors are vital in creating the spectrum of hues that most of us are blessed to take for granted, and they make life richly vibrant.

Purple, in the majority of the world's cultures, is both holy and royal, signifying wisdom and prosperity, because of the necessity and difficulty in obtaining the pigments for original artworks and clothing. Back when you had to pick berries or pull beets to have any style or flair, purple's doubling of precious dyes was therefore reserved for elevated purposes.

Purple's elevated purpose is regarded worldwide, this blend of red and blue becoming much less haughty in the modern age, and a surprisingly popular color of late. The power of blending harmoniously passionate red and soothing blue is everywhere, at cafes, shops, offices and in advertising.

Purple is the color of the new millennium. It is the shade of a perfect sunset and sunrise, requiring a balance between sun and sea, the blend of fire and water necessary for its special magic. Too much of either changes the shade drastically. Ask an artist partial to its use.

Purple is the perfect mix of red and blue and an apt symbol for the power and prosperity inherent in compromise.

Purple. Wise color. Wise choice.

Rob DeWitt is a freelance writer, whose favorite color has always been purple. His first novel, "People's Property," is available online at

Guest columnists write their own views on subjects they choose, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.

Praise for purple, with a passion 06/08/08 [Last modified: Monday, November 1, 2010 10:51am]
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