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eBook A Perfect Red: Empire, Espionage, and the Quest for the Color of Desire download

by Amy Butler Greenfield

eBook A Perfect Red: Empire, Espionage, and the Quest for the Color of Desire download ISBN: 0060522755
Author: Amy Butler Greenfield
Publisher: Harper; New title edition (April 26, 2005)
Language: English
Pages: 352
ePub: 1734 kb
Fb2: 1423 kb
Rating: 4.6
Other formats: doc txt lrf lit
Category: Art and Photo
Subcategory: Graphic Design

Red is the color of passion, of desire, of power.

Red is the color of passion, of desire, of power. Think of the Communist flag, of fire engines, of blood.

Includes bibliographical references (pages 293-318) and index. This book recounts the colorful history of cochineal, a legendary red dye that was once one of the world's most precious commodities. Treasured by the ancient Mexicans, cochineal was sold in the great Aztec marketplaces, where it attracted the attention of the Spanish conquistadors in 1519. Shipped to Europe, the dye created a sensation, producing the brightest, strongest red the world had ever seen. Soon Spain's cochineal monopoly was worth a fortune.

A Perfect Red recounts the colorful history of cochineal, a legendary red dye that was once one of the world's most . A Perfect Red tells their stories - true-life tales of mystery, empire, and adventure, in pursuit of the most desirable color on earth.

A Perfect Red recounts the colorful history of cochineal, a legendary red dye that was once one of the world's most precious commodities.

A Perfect Red - Amy Butler Greenfield Determined to break Spain’s lucrative monopoly, other nations turned to espionage and piracy.

A Perfect Red - Amy Butler Greenfield. A Perfect Red. Empire, Espionage, and the Quest for the Color of Desire. Amy Butler Greenfield. For my family, at home and abroad. Prologue: The Color of Desire. Determined to break Spain’s lucrative monopoly, other nations turned to espionage and piracy. Kings, haberdashers, scientists, pirates, and spies-all became caught up in the chase for the most desirable color on Earth.

Cochineal became a valuable export for the Spanish Empire because other Europeans could not duplicate the intense red color it produced

Cochineal became a valuable export for the Spanish Empire because other Europeans could not duplicate the intense red color it produced. The insect that produces the dye is so small that in the days before good microscopes, Europeans (including the Spaniards) had no idea of the nature of the dye. Most of them thought it was a form of inorganic matter.

Автор: Greenfield Amy Butler Название: A Perfect Red: Empire, Espionage .

Автор: Greenfield, Amy Butler Название: Perfect Red ISBN: 055277829X ISBN-13(EAN): 9780552778299 Издательство: Random House Рейтинг

Greenfield's history of the color red is about as thorough as one can get. She starts with a history of dyeing, then .

Greenfield's history of the color red is about as thorough as one can get. She starts with a history of dyeing, then moves into the discovery of the cochineal, its proliferation and biology, and finally into a quick look into fashion and status. There are times when she seems unfocused and the chronology is disjointed, but each facet of this history has its own slant and requires a different timeline. Meggo, July 10, 2007.

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A Perfect Red recounts the colorful history of cochineal, a legendary red dye that was once one of the world's most precious commodities. Treasured by the ancient Mexicans, cochineal was sold in the great Aztec marketplaces, where it attracted the attention of the Spanish conquistadors in 1519. Shipped to Europe, the dye created a sensation, producing the brightest, strongest red the world had ever seen. Soon Spain's cochineal monopoly was worth a fortune.

Desperate to find their own sources of the elusive dye, the English, French, Dutch, and other Europeans tried to crack the enigma of cochineal. Did it come from a worm, a berry, a seed? Could it be stolen from Mexico and transplanted to their own colonies? Pirates, explorers, alchemists, scientists, and spies -- all joined the chase for cochineal, a chase that lasted more than three centuries. A Perfect Red tells their stories -- true-life tales of mystery, empire, and adventure, in pursuit of the most desirable color on earth.

Comments: (7)
Eyalanev
Beware Kindle Readers! This e-book, for which you will pay $3 more than the print edition and second day shipping for a Prime member, has none of the illustrations referred to in the text. The notes are unwieldy to operate and the complete lack of part of the book (yes, plates and figures referred to and marked by the author are actually part of the book) is extremely frustrating. For this price, I expected not only the plates but live links to them. Aside from this, do buy the actual book and read this. Fascinating breakdown of the cultural and social history surrounding the economics and aesthetics of Red and so much more.
Ce
This was a thoroughly fascinating book, and incredibly well researched. (Check the nearly endless bibliography at the back of the book if you have any doubt!)

In a nutshell, color, particularly in textiles, was rare and valuable until the early parts of the last century. Amazing that what we now take for granted was beyond our great-great grandparents wildest imaginations. The masses dressed in dull vegetable dyes of beige, muddy yellows, and greys. Only the wealthiest could afford brilliant colors, and wearing it was the ideal way to flaunt their wealth and status.

This book takes us from the discovery in "New Spain" (Mexico) of cochineal, a crushed insect dye which yielded a never before seen brilliant red color. Spain built an empire on cochineal, and went through great lengths to keep the origin of the dye a secret. Ms. Greenfield explores the far reaching effects of cochineal on history: empire building, piracy, espionage, scientific advancements (and infighting), the connotations of red through history, even exploring perceived racism and class distinctions based on lack of color, and later, when the tables turned, a surfeit of color.

Who would have ever though that something as simple as "red" would inextricably tangle itself in history in such a way? Red. Red? Red!

An excellent read for anyone with an interest in history, fashion, textiles, or science.
Lightseeker
In addition to being the definitive document on the red dye, cochineal; this incredibly well-researched book on organic red dye also includes a basic history of the colonies of New Spain, particularly Mexico, and their crucial importance to the dyed color red as craved by European royals. Although this is an historical treatise on a type of dye, it reads almost like a novel, never boring the reader as (s)he is led through the discovery of a superb red-dye bearing insect in New Spain and it's subsequent huge commercial import on the then known world, leading even to the hijacking of ships bearing tons of the precious cargo by pirates sanctioned by the British crown. The reader will not be bored by this historical tale of a hugely useful, expensive bug.
Bulace
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think that there would be enough information about a color to fill a book. After reading A Perfect Red by Amy Greenfield I can see there is lots of information, and this book has it. This book goes into everything about the color red; where it was made, how it was made, who made it, and more. The biggest and the brightest of them all was cochineal, a color so wonderful that people would kill for it. The book starts in the 1300's and goes right up through the 1900's. It also shows that red is a very powerful color, people really react to it. Red is the color of passion, of desire, of power. Think of the Communist flag, of fire engines, of blood. All bright red. For me red is also my astrological color and has always been one of my favorites. I gave the book four stars only because so much of the book is political and I skipped around a lot reading it. A good read about a fiery and dynamic color.
Unh
A good read about something I seldom think about; that is, the history of color. This book could do with a few more foot notes as she easily glides by statements about the habits and mores of centuries as if they are established, long-known realities. I would have liked to know sources to better judge the credibility of some of the more interesting assertions. Still, a good, easy read...
MegaStar
This was one of two books a friend traveled across the country to share with me. I am so glad she did. I would never have picked up this book on my own. I have a terrible time finding non-fiction works that are interesting - unless they are recommended. I look at the table of books and decide something looks good. Then when I get it home, I have a hard time getting to my 100 page allowed stopping point.

Greenfield does a wonderful job of describing the importance of the color red throughout history and the different compounds used to create it. With a focus on the cochineal originating in Mexico, this book covers the fortunes of Spain and the industry itself. Weaving the domestication of cochineal with the efforts of other countries to destroy Spain's monopoly, the book moves quickly. there were very few sections of the book where I was willing to put it down. Yes, I could stop at the chapters, but I only once put it down while in the middle of a chapter.

I highly recommend this book - and if I didn't have to send it back to its owner, I would keep it in the library. I will be recommending it to my mother for her book club. With their focus on women authors and a mix of fiction and non-fiction, this book will give them much to discuss.