The Eleven Colors

Can you guess the eleven most common words for colors, based on Google's list of books published 1800–2008?
Only includes words whose primary meaning is a color, so no gold, silver, etc...
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: December 16, 2019
First submittedDecember 24, 2014
Times taken116,391
Rating4.36
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Color
Black
Blue
Brown
Gray/Grey
Green
Orange
Pink
Purple
Red
White
Yellow
+41
Level ∞
Nov 10, 2017
After these eleven, the next most common were scarlet, violet, crimson, and indigo.
+9
Level 45
Dec 2, 2017
I even tried scarlet indigo and violet
+12
Level 44
Mar 16, 2018
Only includes words whose primary meaning is a color, so no gold, silver, etc...so violet wouldn't be listed either since it has a primary meaning as a flower.
+2
Level 39
Sep 30, 2020
gray is not a main color, gray is the combonation of black and white and should not be valid.
+20
Level 51
Oct 28, 2020
@Nanook03 that doesn't make sense; then you could say purple shouldn't be added since it's just a combination of red and blue
+3
Level 50
Dec 20, 2020
@butterbean33, not really, I mean normally people say violet to refer to a purplish colour, not the flower. it may be the original purpose of the word but it's not the primary one anymore.
+1
Level 69
Dec 20, 2020
@Nanook03 The only way that could make sense is if black and white were also not included, since they aren't technically colors in the same sense as the others. But if you're going to make that argument, then only the primary colors should count, since all the other colors are made from mixing the primary colors in varying amounts.
+1
Level 70
Dec 21, 2020
^ this
+28
Level 21
Dec 6, 2017
NOO CYAN
+5
Level 49
Mar 13, 2018
Well, that's when it gets interesting!
+2
Level 82
Feb 27, 2020
Is violet's primary meaning a color? It's also a flower
+1
Level 46
Dec 25, 2020
What is crimson? Sounds like a dessert.
+2
Level 41
May 25, 2021
Really? Crimson is a rich, deep red color :\
+8
Level 68
Nov 10, 2017
Orange primary meaning is a color? :-)
+6
Level 63
Nov 10, 2017
Yeah, I thought about that as well. Is orange's primary definition the color or the fruit?
+30
Level 79
Nov 10, 2017
Etymologically, fruit was first.
+3
Level 79
Nov 10, 2017
Dijlas, very cool
+6
Level 45
Dec 2, 2017
before we used the word orange to describe the colour orange (which we indeed got from the fruit) everything we now describe as orange was described as RED so an orange was actually a red fruit

also why robins are described as red breasts when they are in fact orange

+4
Level 70
Dec 3, 2017
Here in Australia we have a real mixture of Robins. Some are Orange chested as you suggest, but we have red, scarlet, yellow and my favourite the Pink Robin which is actually to me is a beautiful pinky-violet colour.
+4
Level 68
Jun 19, 2020
Is that also why people with orange hair are called redheads?
+3
Level 62
Nov 10, 2017
Man, Quizmaster is just going all in on the quiz making this week!
+12
Level 81
Nov 18, 2017
I guess "clear" isn't a color. :-(
+2
Level 15
Sep 24, 2018
Lol
+2
Level 32
May 12, 2020
I guess they just classify it as white lol
+1
Level 41
May 25, 2021
Clear is like....color without color 0v0
+8
Level 47
Dec 1, 2017
black gray and white are shades.
+9
Level 38
Dec 2, 2017
Only if you're an artist.
+40
Level 55
Jan 18, 2018
you must be fun at parties
+3
Level 46
Mar 13, 2018
lol
+8
Level 58
Mar 13, 2018
Don't hate Rassy for being educated
+2
Level 46
Mar 23, 2018
More like 1908...
+2
Level 83
Jun 28, 2018
Alexander Graham Bell texted and said that phone call joke got old in 1876.
+2
Level 43
Dec 2, 2017
lmao couldn't think of orange got it with 2 seconds left
+10
Level 49
Mar 13, 2018
I missed brown, thats kinda crappy ! LOL
+2
Level 46
Mar 13, 2018
I missed white
+2
Level 21
Mar 20, 2018
Can't believe I missed white!!!
+2
Level 47
May 27, 2018
missed pink :/
+2
Level 15
Sep 24, 2018
Paco same I forgot it
+1
Level 41
May 25, 2021
@qcumber I missed pink too lol...maybe because it's my least favorite color 0v0
+2
Level 45
Dec 2, 2017
what are the odds GREY actually isn't a reference to the colour but Christian Grey
+6
Level 43
Dec 28, 2017
No, that's just how we spell it in the UK.
+1
Level 45
Apr 14, 2021
Agreed.
+8
Level 58
Mar 13, 2018
Pretty much everyone in the world spell it "grey". We randomly changed it because...well, look up 1812 anti-English spelling changes.
+2
Level 76
Mar 15, 2018
Worldwide there are 336 million native English speakers and just under 70% of those live in the US - which I think makes US spellings the norm and the rest of the world aberrant.
+3
Level 47
May 27, 2018
no, the us just didnt like england in the 19th century. thats the only reason it isnt the same.
+3
Level 83
Jul 25, 2018
You forgot the 17th, 18th, 20th and 21st Centuries.
+1
Level 23
Dec 2, 2017
Was singing Leon Le Chameleon as I did this ;)
+1
Level 62
Mar 13, 2018
Just thought of the Karate Belts and added Grey haha
+1
Level 70
Mar 13, 2018
I did Judo but I assume that Karate like Judo does not have Grey Belts
+2
Level 33
Mar 13, 2018
Funny how ALL the answers can be seen in the picture of this quiz! :D
+1
Level 68
Jun 19, 2020
Really? I don't see any green.
+2
Level 38
Mar 13, 2018
My old art teacher always said 'there's no such colour as black - black is just an absence of light'.
+12
Level 64
Mar 13, 2018
You should have asked her what is in the tube of black paint.

Saying black isn't a color is only true for light-generated color, like on a TV output or night blackness. This is the additive theory of color, which is really only useful in physics.

Black is definitely a color when it comes to pigments, colors, and art. Plenty of pigments and molecular structures can create black. The subtractive theory of color is mostly what you'd interact with on a daily basis.

On a side note, very few objects are true black bodies. Pretty much anything we see on earth will still reflect some light. Plus I would personally categorize black is a color because it's something we can perceive and identify. I wouldn't group it with other "not-color" parts of the UV spectrum like infrared, ultraviolet, microwave...

+2
Level 27
Mar 13, 2018
Okay... sure? So what now? Do we believe you or not?

I say 'Wibble'.

+1
Level 73
Apr 24, 2021
yes, but colour can only be perceived when light reflects off it

True black (which would be very hard to create as you say) is something that absorbs all visible light, just as true white reflects all visible light and is therefore a combination of all visible colours

+2
Level 50
Mar 14, 2018
Anybody else try to sing the colors from Joseph's coat of many colors? :-)
+2
Level 45
Mar 14, 2018
I thought we were supposed to list words that are synonyms of color ...
+1
Level 78
Mar 16, 2018
That's what I did at first, too, but when hue, shade, and tint weren't accepted I tried red, then I was on a roll. (I think the instructions could be better.)
+1
Level 67
Aug 30, 2019
I thought that might be it aswell, but tried a colour to test it out. As sound as it accepted that I knew it wanted different colours and not different words for colour
+2
Level 48
Mar 15, 2018
I needed help from my kid.
+1
Level 33
Mar 17, 2018
Purple is NOT a colour
+3
Level 67
Aug 30, 2019
What is it then?
+2
Level 68
Nov 6, 2019

Why Not?

+1
Level 38
Apr 24, 2021
A burple
+1
Level 22
Mar 19, 2018
No cyan..? :(
+2
Level 53
Jan 26, 2019
I don't think I've ever heard or read the word cyan describing anything outside of the computer.
+1
Level 74
Nov 1, 2019
I've heard my cousin say it and I've read about it in a textbook
+1
Level 62
Jun 19, 2020
I knew someone who thought that the colour was pronounced the same as "cayenne", and didn't know why the seasoning was called by a colour that it wasn't.
+2
Level 23
Mar 19, 2018
Cyan isn't in there, yet grey is? I mean grey and gray are just gradients of white and black...
+1
Level 67
Aug 30, 2019
If white and black are allowed to be there so should gray.
+1
Level 15
Mar 22, 2018
100% 2 seconds left, BRAINFART... good for an italian!
+1
Level 37
May 11, 2018
Pink, a PRIMARY color?
+5
Level 68
Feb 27, 2020
no one said anything about primary colours
+1
Level 18
May 14, 2018
I got all of them pretty easily. A little unexpected the answers would be so obvious though. Its like they're so obvious you think it's too obvious and don't care to even check sometimes.
+1
Level 22
May 14, 2018
Brown exists... lol.
+1
Level 16
Jul 21, 2018
finished with 39 seconds
+1
Level 53
Jan 26, 2019
Finished with 39 seconds. Also my favorite color is the least guessed :(
+1
Level 20
Mar 4, 2019
Your favorite color is grey???????? sad.
+2
Level 67
Aug 30, 2019
How in the world is that sad?!? Some people are warm and colourfull themselves and don't need screaming flashing stuff. But can see the beauty in pure and simple things.

I like gray aswell, because it just needs a tiny hint of colour ( a little stripe for instance) to make that colour look amazing and much more meaningfull. Instead of a chaos of colors where one is overscreaming the other and it is one cacophony and none of the colors is really done justice.

+2
Level 67
Aug 30, 2019
It reminds me of how some kids have hundreds of (expensive) toys and still arent satisfied, and toss em away after only having played with it once. While some with only a few simple items are. Like a rock and a piece of wood, and create entire new games and worlds with it.

Think about which one is sad... (I wouldnt vote for the one that is creative and humble and thankfulll over the one that is ungratefull and wines and can't see the value of things (and with value i dont mean moneywise)

+1
Level 45
Feb 26, 2019
This is the easiest 5 points.
+1
Level 73
Nov 5, 2019
4 for me - I missed grey.
+1
Level 20
Mar 4, 2019
Colors are easy. I got this with 40 seconds remaining.
+1
Level 17
Apr 4, 2019
I missed gray......
+1
Level 21
Oct 22, 2019
Easy
+1
Level 51
Jan 29, 2020
Got all of them right!
+1
Level 51
Jul 15, 2020
in 9 seconds
+1
Level 28
Feb 8, 2020
Forgot about the obvious ones xD
+1
Level 20
Jun 15, 2020
it was easy
+1
Level 64
Jul 29, 2020
Probably the easiest featured quiz on jetpunk, even a preschooler can get 100%.
+1
Level 41
Oct 27, 2020
Soooooooooo eeeeeeeaaaaaassssyyyyyy
+1
Level 35
Nov 16, 2020
Actually, black is not a colour. Black is devoid of all light, whereas colours need light to exist.
+2
Level 74
Dec 20, 2020
Black is an achromatic colour.
+1
Level 72
Dec 20, 2020
Mauve!
+1
Level 38
Dec 20, 2020
Black and White are shades not colors. Read ^^
+1
Level 70
Dec 21, 2020
ROY G BIV?
+1
Level 30
Dec 21, 2020
"Only includes words whose primary meaning is a color, so no gold, silver, etc..."

How about golden?

+1
Level 59
Dec 21, 2020
These eleven are anthropologically the correct set. Whether they are scientifically colors is irrelevant. It is also the list of the most common color terms in a huge set of English. By anthropologically, I mean there is an order to the terms for color a society uses. Some only have three terms: black, white, and red. Some have four - and it is always the same four. And so on. Once a society has eleven basic color terms, the colors here are the ones named.
+1
Level 57
Dec 21, 2020
If this was a quiz oriented towards wanna-be poets, cerulean would be on here. Big time.
+1
Level 59
Dec 23, 2020
And here I started trying "hue, shade, tint" etc.
+1
Level 23
Jan 8, 2021
Black, white and grey are shades not colours.
+1
Level 22
Feb 20, 2021
100% with 31 seconds left...Good Quiz 💗💗
+1
Level 23
Mar 19, 2021
i did the whole rainbow... and the only 2 that weren't included are indigo and violet. (makes sense for me
+1
Level 59
Apr 24, 2021
When I used to teach ESL, we had a song for when we were teaching colors that literally listed these specific 11 colors. I started with that, and was amazed it finished the quiz. Very quick and a easy 5 pts :-)
+1
Level 21
Apr 24, 2021
Got it with 2 seconds left :D
+1
Level 51
May 19, 2021
The twelfth color: :'(