purple passage


Definition of purple passage

  1. 1 :  a passage conspicuous for brilliance or effectiveness in a work that is dull, commonplace, or uninspired

  2. 2 chiefly British :  a piece of obtrusively ornate writing —called also purple patch

Origin and Etymology of purple passage

translation of Latin pannus purpureus purple patch; from the traditional splendor of purple cloth as contrasted with plainer materials

First Known Use: 1882

Seen and Heard

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a trip made at another's expense

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