Black is the darkest color, the result of the absence or complete absorption of visible light. Full black is an achromatic color, literally a color without huelike white and gray.
Black ink is the most common color used for printing books, newspapers and Full black, because it has the highest contrast with white paper and is the easiest to read. For the same reason, black text on a white screen is the most common format used on computer screens. Black and white have often Full black used to describe opposites; particularly truth and ignorance, good and evil, the Dark Ages versus Age of Enlightenment.
Since the Middle Agesblack has been the symbolic color of solemnity and authority, and for this reason is still commonly worn by judges and magistrates.
Black was one of the first colors used by artists in neolithic cave paintings. Full black the 14th century, it began to be worn by royalty, the clergy, judges and government officials in much of Europe. It became the color worn by English romantic poets, businessmen and statesmen in the 19th century, and a high fashion color in the 20th century. In the Roman Empireit "Full black" the color of mourning, and over the centuries it was frequently associated with deathevil, witches and magic.
According to surveys in Europe and North America, it is the color commonly associated with mourning, the end, secrets, Full black, force, violence, evil, and elegance. More distant cognates include Latin flagrare "to blaze, glow, burn"and Ancient Greek phlegein "to burn, scorch". The Ancient Greeks Full black used the same word to name different colors, if they had the same intensity.
Kuanos' could mean both dark blue and black. The Ancient Romans had two words for black: Ater has vanished from the vocabulary, but niger was the source of the country name Nigeria  the English word Negro and the word for "black" in most modern Romance languages French: Old High German also had two words for black: These are parallelled in Middle English by the terms swart for dull black and blaek for luminous black.
Swart still survives as the word swarthywhile blaek became the modern English black. In heraldry, the word used for the black color is sable named for the black fur of the sablean animal. Black was one of the first colors used in art. The Lascaux Cave in France contains drawings of bulls and other animals drawn by paleolithic artists between 18, and 17, years ago.
They began by using charcoal, and then made more vivid black pigments by burning bones or grinding a powder Full black manganese oxide. For the ancient Egyptians, black had positive associations; being the color of fertility and the rich black soil flooded by the Nile. It was the color of Anubisthe god of the underworld, who took the form of a black jackaland offered protection against evil to the dead.
"Full black" the ancient Greeks, black was also the color of the underworld, separated from the world of the living by the river Acheronwhose water was black. Those who had committed the worst sins were sent to Tartarusthe deepest and darkest level.
In the center was the palace of Hadesthe king of the underworld, where he was seated upon a black ebony throne. Black was one of the most important colors used Full black ancient Greek artists. In the 6th century BC, Full black began making black-figure pottery and later red figure potteryusing a highly original technique.
In black-figure pottery, the artist would paint figures with a glossy clay slip on a red clay pot. When the pot was fired, the figures painted with the slip would turn black, against a red background. Later they reversed the process, painting the spaces between the figures with slip.
This created magnificent red figures against a glossy black background. In the social hierarchy of ancient Romepurple was the color reserved for Full black Emperor; red was the color worn by soldiers red cloaks for the officers, red tunics for the soldiers ; white the color worn by the priests, and black was worn by craftsmen and artisans. The black they wore was not deep Full black rich; the vegetable dyes used Full black make black were not solid or lasting, so the blacks often turned out faded gray or brown.
In Latinthe word for black, ater and to darken, were associated with "Full black," brutality and evil. They were the root of the English words "atrocious" and "atrocity". Black was also the Roman color of death and mourning. In the 2nd century BC Roman magistrates began to wear a dark toga, called a toga pullato funeral ceremonies. Later, under the Empire, the family of the deceased also wore dark colors for a long period; then, after a banquet to mark the end of mourning, exchanged the black for a white toga.
In Roman poetry, death was called the hora nigrathe black hour. They also feared Helthe goddess of the kingdom of the dead, whose skin was black on one side and red on the other. Full black also held sacred the raven. They believed that Odinthe king of the Nordic pantheon, had two black ravens, Huginn and Muninn, who served as his agents, traveling the world for him, watching and listening.
Neolithic paintings of bulls in the Lascaux Cavemore than Full black, years old. Statue of Anubisguardian of the underworld, from the tomb of Tutankhamun. Ajax and Achilles playing a game, about — BC.
Red-figure pottery with black background. Portrait of Thetisabout — BC. In the early Middle Ages, black was commonly associated with darkness evil. In Medieval paintings, the devil was usually depicted as having human form, but with wings and black skin or hair.
In fashion, black did not have Full black prestige of red, the color of the nobility. It was worn by Benedictine monks as a sign of humility and penitence. In the 12th century a famous theological dispute broke out between the Cistercian monks, who wore white, and the Benedictines, who wore black.
A Benedictine abbot, Pierre the Venerable, accused the Cistercians of excessive pride in wearing white instead of black. Saint Bernard of Clairvauxthe founder the Cistercians responded that black was the color of the devil, hell, "of death and sin," while white represented "purity, innocence and all the virtues".
Black symbolized both power and secrecy in the medieval world. The emblem of the Holy Roman Empire of Germany was a black eagle. The black knight in the poetry of the Middle Ages was an Full black figure, hiding his identity, usually wrapped in secrecy. Black inkinvented in Ancient China and India, was traditionally used in the Middle Ages for writing, for the simple reason that black was the darkest color and therefore provided the greatest contrast with white paper or parchment, making it the easiest color to read.
It became even more important in the 15th century, with the invention of printing. A new kind of ink, printer's ink, was created out of sootturpentine and walnut oil.
The new ink made Full black possible to spread ideas to a mass audience through printed books, and Full black popularize art through black and white engravings and prints. Because of its contrast and clarity, black ink on white paper continued to be the standard for printing books, newspapers and documents; and for the same reason black text on a white background is the most common format used on computer screens.
The Italian painter Duccio di Buoninsegna showed Christ expelling the Devilshown covered with bristly black hair — The 15th-century painting of the Last Judgement by Fra Angelico — depicted hell with a vivid black devil devouring sinners.
Portrait of a monk of the Benedictine Order Black ink was used for printing books, because it provided the greatest contrast with the white paper and was the clearest and easiest color to read. In the early Middle Ages, princes, "Full black" and the Full black usually wore bright colors, particularly scarlet cloaks from Italy.
Black was rarely part of the Full black of a noble family. The one exception was the fur of the sable. This glossy black fur, from an animal of the marten family, was the finest and most expensive fur in Europe. It was imported from Russia and Poland and used to trim the robes and gowns of royalty. In the 14th century, the status of black began to change.
First, high-quality black dyes began to Full black on the market, allowing garments of a rich black. Magistrates and government officials began to wear black robes, as a sign of the importance and seriousness of their positions. A third reason was the passage of sumptuary laws in some parts of Europe which prohibited the wearing of costly clothes and certain colors by anyone Full black members of the nobility. The famous bright scarlet cloaks from Venice and the peacock blue fabrics from Florence were restricted to the nobility.
The wealthy bankers and merchants of northern Italy responded by changing to black robes and gowns, made with the most expensive fabrics.
The change to the more austere but elegant black was quickly picked up by the kings and nobility.
It moved to England at the end of the reign of King Richard II —where all the court began to wear black. In —20, black became the color of the powerful Duke of Burgundy, Philip the Good. European rulers saw it as the color of power, dignity, humility and temperance. By the end Full black the 16th century, it was the color worn by almost all the monarchs of Europe and their courts. Philip the Good in aboutby Rogier van der Weyden. Portrait of a Young Woman by Petrus Christus about Portrait of Philip II of Spain — While black was the color worn by the Catholic rulers of Europe, it was also the emblematic color of the Protestant in Europe and the Puritans in England and America.
John CalvinPhilip Melanchthon and other Protestant theologians denounced the richly colored and decorated interiors of Roman Catholic churches. They saw the color red, worn by the Pope and his Cardinals, as the color of luxury, sin, and human folly. In Protestant doctrine, clothing was required to be sober, simple and discreet. Bright colors were banished and replaced by blacks, browns and grays; Full black and children were recommended to wear white.
In the Protestant Netherlands, Rembrandt used this sober new palette of blacks and browns to create portraits whose faces emerged from the shadows expressing the deepest human emotions. The Catholic of the Counter-Reformation, like Rubenswent in the opposite direction; they filled their paintings with bright and rich colors.