vi·​na·​ceous vī-ˈnā-shəs How to pronounce vinaceous (audio)
: of the color of red wine

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The first recorded evidence of vinaceous in English dates from 1678, shortly before the accession of Mary II. If ever the queen used vinaceous, she was probably in the confines of her landscaped garden, admiring the vinaceous shades of petals or studying the vinaceous cap of a mushroom; since its beginning, vinaceous has flourished in the earthy lexicon of horticulture and mycology. It has also taken flight in the ornithological world as a descriptive word for the unique red coloring of some birds, like the vinaceous purple finch.

Word History


Latin vinaceus of wine, from vinum wine — more at wine

First Known Use

1678, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of vinaceous was in 1678


Dictionary Entries Near vinaceous

Cite this Entry

“Vinaceous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Dec. 2023.

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