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[vahy-uh-lit] /ˈvaɪ ə lɪt/
any chiefly low, stemless or leafy-stemmed plant of the genus Viola, having purple, blue, yellow, white, or variegated flowers.
Compare violet family.
any such plant except the pansy and the viola.
the flower of any native, wild species of violet, as distinguished from the pansy: the state flower of Illinois, New Jersey, and Rhode Island.
any of various similar plants of other genera.
reddish-blue, a color at the opposite end of the visible spectrum from red, an effect of light with a wavelength between 400 and 450 nm.
of the color violet; reddish-blue:
violet hats.
Origin of violet
1300-50; Middle English < Old French violete, equivalent to viole (< Latin viola violet) + -ete -et


[vahy-uh-lit] /ˈvaɪ ə lɪt/
a female given name.
Also, Violette
[vahy-uh-let, vahy-uh-lit] /ˌvaɪ əˈlɛt, ˈvaɪ ə lɪt/ (Show IPA),
[vahy-uh-let-uh] /ˌvaɪ əˈlɛt ə/ (Show IPA)
. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for violet
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • My own violet,” he said, “you are beautiful as a vision to-night.

    Julian Home Dean Frederic W. Farrar
  • But he could see her violet eyes clearly, and the look in them was tender and loving.

    The Rich Little Poor Boy Eleanor Gates
  • “I dare say they can do without it, thank you,” said violet, stiffly.

    The Inglises Margaret Murray Robertson
  • When she took 'em out of her muff all I could smell was violet.

    Blow The Man Down Holman Day
  • Purple and violet—to express royalty, "Kings and priests of God."

    A History of Mourning Richard Davey
British Dictionary definitions for violet


any of various temperate perennial herbaceous plants of the violaceous genus Viola, such as V. odorata (sweet (or garden) violet), typically having mauve or bluish flowers with irregular showy petals
any other plant of the genus Viola, such as the wild pansy
any of various similar but unrelated plants, such as the African violet
  1. any of a group of colours that vary in saturation but have the same purplish-blue hue. They lie at one end of the visible spectrum, next to blue; approximate wavelength range 445–390 nanometres
  2. (as adjective): a violet dress
a dye or pigment of or producing these colours
violet clothing: dressed in violet
(informal) shrinking violet, a shy person
Derived Forms
violet-like, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Old French violete a little violet, from viole, from Latin viola violet
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for violet

early 14c., small plant with purplish-blue flowers, from Old French violette, diminutive of viole "violet," from Latin viola, cognate with Greek ion (see iodine), probably from a pre-Indo-European Mediterranean language. The color sense (late 14c.) developed from the flower.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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violet in Medicine

violet vi·o·let (vī'ə-lĭt)

  1. The hue of the short-wave end of the visible spectrum, evoked in the human observer by radiant energy with wavelengths of approximately 380 to 420 nanometers.

  2. Any of a group of colors, reddish-blue in hue, that may vary in lightness and saturation.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Idioms and Phrases with violet


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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