Definition of carmine in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkɑːmʌɪn/
Pronunciation: /ˈkɑːmɪn/


[mass noun]
1A vivid crimson colour: [as modifier]: carmine roses
More example sentences
  • If the set is entirely monochromatic the costumes use vivid colour - luscious carmine reds, particularly for the lovers.
  • However, the most picturesque of all bee-eaters in the world is the crimson plumaged carmine bee-eater, which I had seen once - in a bare, dark thorny tree in Masai Mara, Kenya.
  • Instead of being the customary deep red, it was an odd carmine colour.
1.1A vivid crimson pigment made from cochineal.
Example sentences
  • Also seek out natural sugar substitutes like stevia and natural food colors like annatto, carmine, carotene, and turmeric.
  • It produces the colorant cochineal, otherwise known as carmine or E120.
  • The carmine is used in an aqueous solution with potassium carbonate and potassium chloride. Glycogen stains bright red.


Early 18th century: from French carmin, based on Arabic qirmiz (see kermes). Compare with crimson.

  • vermilion from Middle English:

    The name for this brilliant red colour and pigment goes back to Latin vermis ‘a worm’, source also of vermin (Middle English), and its variant varmint (mid 16th century). The reason for the unlikely connection probably lies in the red colours crimson and carmine (early 18th century), which were originally extracted from the body of the kermes insect. People mistakenly thought that vermilion was also derived from an insect or worm, although its main early source was in fact cinnabar, a bright red mineral.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: car|mine

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