The band of color in the Visible Spectrum of the Electromagnetic Spectrum between the wavelengths of 440 and 400 nanometers.

Two little-known facts about violets.

First, they're delicious to eat. From starchy root to confectionary flower, every single part, sweet or scentless, should have devotees in every place they grow. It should be cultivated, and its zesty, assertive leaves put onto NYU's student menu as salad, soup or sauce. Considered a regional specialty of Spain and Italy, it merits in Madrid, a directed boutique, La Violeta. Over here, it should be obsessively bred like hemp for its oils, while the shyer native species put on a conservation list, so they can propagate their mongrel kind. Violet heads can be candied, iced, preserved in vinegar or jam, dried as scented ink or natural food coloring, used to flavor vodka, or enjoyed on their own, with watercress and Belgian endive, or eaten from the hand (violet fighting, as in hooking violets, pulling, and the victor eating the loser, is very fun). Violet flavor ought to be something that you can get at the local grocery (next to the rose water, and ...oh, I'm getting carried away). In short, if you find violets in your yard, don't consider them "weeds". Eat some, and transplant the rest someplace safe. They will make lots of leaves in between times.

Second, they're a trickster. Every bite of Violet will overload your nose with a local anesthetic, ionone, which will paralyze your olfactories for anything from a few minutes to two hours. Hence, the coinage "iocaine powder", which played so large a part in "The Princess Bride".

Hope I've made some things clear.

Vi"o*let (?), n. [F. violette a violet (cf. violet violet-colored), dim. of OF. viole a violet, L. viola; akin to Gr. . Cf. Iodine.]

1. Bot.

Any plant or flower of the genus Viola, of many species. The violets are generally low, herbaceous plants, and the flowers of many of the species are blue, while others are white or yellow, or of several colors, as the pansy (Viola tricolor).

The cultivated sweet violet is Viola odorata of Europe. The common blue violet of the eastern United States is V. cucullata; the sand, or bird-foot, violet is V. pedata.

2.

The color of a violet, or that part of the spectrum farthest from red. It is the most refrangible part of the spectrum.

3.

In art, a color produced by a combination of red and blue in equal proportions; a bluish purple color.

Mollett.

4. Zool.

Any one of numerous species of small violet-colored butterflies belonging to Lycaena, or Rusticus, and allied genera.

Corn violet. See under Corn. -- Dame's violet. Bot. See Damewort. -- Dogtooth violet. Bot. See under Dogtooth. -- Water violet Bot., an aquatic European herb (Hottonia palustris) with pale purplish flowers and pinnatifid leaves.

 

© Webster 1913.


Vi"o*let (?), a. [Cf. F. violet. See Violet, n.]

Dark blue, inclining to red; bluish purple; having a color produced by red and blue combined.

Violet shell Zool., any species of Ianthina; -- called also violet snail. See Lanthina. -- Violet wood, a name given to several kinds of hard purplish or reddish woods, as king wood, myall wood, and the wood of the Andira violacea, a tree of Guiana.

 

© Webster 1913.

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