violet

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noun vi·o·let \ ˈvī-(ə-)lət \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of violet

1 a :any of a genus (Viola of the family Violaceae, the violet family) of chiefly herbs with alternate stipulate leaves and showy flowers in spring and often cleistogamous flowers in summer; especially :one with smaller usually solid-colored flowers as distinguished from the usually larger-flowered violas and pansies
b :any of several plants of genera other than that of the violet — compare dogtooth violet
2 :any of a group of colors of reddish-blue hue, low lightness, and medium saturation

Recent Examples of violet from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'violet.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Illustration of violet

Origin and Etymology of violet

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, from viole "the violet flower" (going back to Latin viola "any of various spring flowers, as Viola odorata," derivative of a base vi- of Mediterranean substratal origin, as also Greek íon "the color violet") + -et 1-et


VIOLET Defined for English Language Learners

violet

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noun

Definition of violet for English Language Learners

  • : a plant that has small bluish-purple or white flowers

  • : a bluish-purple color


VIOLET Defined for Kids

violet

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noun vi·o·let \ ˈvī-ə-lət \

Definition of violet for Students

1 :a wild or garden plant related to the pansies that has small often fragrant white, blue, purple, or yellow flowers
2 :a bluish purple


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