Red is the color of extremes. It’s the color of passionate love, seduction, violence, danger, anger, and adventure. Our prehistoric ancestors saw red as the color of fire and blood – energy and primal life forces – and most of red’s symbolism today arises from its powerful associations in the past.
Red is also a magical and religious color. It symbolized super-human heroism to the Greeks and is the color of the Christian crucifixion. Red was almost as rare and as expensive as purple in ancient days – a fact that may explain its magic and power. Paradoxically, today’s intense red dyes come from crushed insects (the lac beetle and the cochineal).
Global Meanings of Red
- Red is the most popular color used on flags in the world. Approximately 77% of all flags include red.
- Red is the international color for stop.
- Red districts sell sex and pornography in every European culture.
- The history of languages reveals that red is the first color after black and white. (All languages have words for black and white. If a third hue exists, it is red.)
Unique Meanings of Red in Different Cultures
- Red is the color of good luck in Asia and is the most popular color in China.
- Most Japanese children draw the sun as a big red circle.
- Red is an auspicious color for marriage. Brides in India and Nepal wear red saris; in Japan, a red kimono symbolizes happiness and good luck.
Source: Color Matters
Lee Tote in Red