See also: Azure and azuré

English

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The arms of Berington of Chester are simply azure.

Etymology

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From Middle English asure, from Old French azur, derived from Arabic لَازَوَرْد (lāzaward, lapis lazuli), dropping the L as if it were equivalent to the French article l’, but maybe اللَّازَوَرْد (al-lāzaward) was heard nongeminated. The Arabic is from Classical Persian لاجورد (lājward, lapis lazuli), from the region of Lajward in Badakhshan.

Compare with Italian azzurro and Spanish azul.

Pronunciation

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  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈæʒ.ə/, /ˈæz.jʊə/, /ˈæʒjʊə/, /əˈzjʊə/, (rarely:) /ˈeɪʒ.ə/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈæʒ.ɚ/, /ˈæz.jʊɹ/, /əˈzʊɹ/, /əˈʒʊɹ/, (rarely:) /əˈzjʊɹ/
  • Audio (US):(file)
  • Rhymes: -ʊə(ɹ), -ɜː(ɹ)
/ˈæʒə(ɹ)/ is the first (sometimes only) pronunciation listed in many dictionaries[1][2][3][4][5][6] and is the most commonly used.[7] Second-most commonly mentioned is /‍ˈæzjʊə(ɹ)/.[2][4][5][6] Though missed by most other dictionaries, /əˈz(j)ʊə(ɹ)/ and /əˈʒʊə(ɹ)/ with stress on the second syllable are also common.[7]
  • Other, uncommon[7] pronunciations are /ˈæʒʊə(ɹ)/[8] and /ˈæʒjʊə(ɹ)/[2][6] In older English, /ˈeɪ-/ also occurred and is still recorded in some dictionaries,[2] but rarely used.

Noun

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azure (countable and uncountable, plural azures)

  1. (countable and uncountable) The clear blue colour of the sky; also, a pigment or dye of this colour.
    azure:  
  2. (heraldry) A blue colour on a coat of arms, represented in engraving by horizontal parallel lines.
    • 1904, Arthur Charles Fox-Davies, The Art of Heraldry: An Encyclopaedia of Armory, London : T.C.; & E.C. Jack, page 41:
      Berington of Chester (on the authority of Harleian manuscript No. 1535) is said to bear a plain shield of azure. Personally I doubt this coat of arms  []
    • 1997, Brault, Early Blazon:
      In Bb [Glover's Roll], the conventional letter B is used to indicate azure in most items.
    • 2010, E. Baumgaertner Wm E. Baumgaertner, Wm E. Baumgaertner, Squires, Knights, Barons, Kings: War and Politics in Fifteenth Century England, Trafford Publishing, →ISBN:
      Sir Henry "Hotspur" Percy: before 1399: or, a lion rampant azure, differentiated with a label gules (a blue lion rampant on a field of gold, differentiated with a red label signifying the first-born son) []
    azure (heraldry):  
  3. (poetic) The unclouded sky; the blue vault above.
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book I”, in Paradise Lost. [], London: [] [Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker []; [a]nd by Robert Boulter []; [a]nd Matthias Walker, [], →OCLC; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: [], London: Basil Montagu Pickering [], 1873, →OCLC:
      Not like those steps / On heaven's azure.
    • 1889, Mathilde Blind, “[Poems of the Open Air.] Reapers.”, in The Ascent of Man, London: Chatto & Windus, [], →OCLC, page 140:
      Not a single cloud mars the flawless azure; / Not a shadow moves o'er the moveless crops; [...]
  4. Any of various widely distributed lycaenid butterflies of the genus Celastrina.
  5. Any of various Australasian lycaenid butterflies of the genus Ogyris.
  6. Lapis lazuli.

Alternative forms

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  • (blue color on a coat of arms): az., b., bl.

Derived terms

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Translations

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Adjective

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azure (not comparable)

  1. Sky blue; resembling the clear blue colour of the unclouded sky.
    Synonym: cerulean
  2. Cloudless.
  3. (heraldry) In blazon, of the colour blue.
    • 1846, Edgar Allan Poe, The Cask of Amontillado:
      ‘I forget your coat of arms.’
      ‘A human foot d’or, in a field azure; the foot crushes a serpent rampant whose fangs are imbedded in the heel.’

Translations

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Verb

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azure (third-person singular simple present azures, present participle azuring, simple past and past participle azured)

  1. (transitive) To colour blue.
    • 1907, The Sugar Beet, volume 28, page 271:
      Our readers are aware that much of the sugar sold in many countries goes through an azuring treatment; blue is added to granulated sugar with the view of making it appear whiter than it actually is.

Translations

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See also

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Colors/Colours in English (layout · text)
             red          orange              yellow              green              blue (incl.      indigo;
             cyan, teal, turquoise)
             purple / violet
         pink (including
         magenta)
         brown      white              grey/gray      black
metals main colours less common colours
tincture or argent gules azure sable vert purpure tenné orange sanguine
depiction                    
roundel (in parentheses: semé):  
bezant (bezanty)
 
plate (platy)
 
torteau (tortelly)
 
hurt (hurty)
 
pellet (pellety), ogress
 
pomme

 
golpe (golpy)
 
orange (semé of oranges)
 
guze (semé of guzes)
goutte (noun) / gutty (adj) thereof:  
(goutte / gutty) d'or (of gold)
 
d'eau (of water)
 
de sang (of blood)
 
de larmes (of tears)
 
de poix

(of pitch)
 
d'huile / d'olive (olive oil)
 



special roundel furs additional, uncommon tinctures:
tincture fountain, syke: barry wavy argent and azure ermine ermines, counter-ermine erminois pean vair counter-vair potent counter-potent bleu celeste, brunâtre, carnation, cendrée (iron, steel, acier), copper, murrey
depiction                  

References

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  1. ^ azure”, in Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, Springfield, Mass.: Merriam-Webster, 1996–present.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Oxford English Dictionary, 1884–1928, and First Supplement, 1933. (modern OED online, 1933 print edition)
  3. ^ azure”, in Dictionary.com Unabridged, Dictionary.com, LLC, 1995–present.
  4. 4.0 4.1 azure”, in Oxford Learner's Dictionaries
  5. 5.0 5.1 azure”, in Cambridge English Dictionary, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire: Cambridge University Press, 1999–present.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, "azure"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 See data in the February 2022 Tea Room.
  8. ^ azure”, in Collins English Dictionary.

Further reading

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  • 2015 March 26, Jeremy Butterfield, Fowler's Dictionary of Modern [British] English Usage, Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 85:
    azure. This 14c. loanword from French has fluctuated in pronunciation in the last two centuries between /ˈaʒ(j)ʊə/, /ˈaʒə/ (OED, 1885, Daniel Jones, 1917, but both cite other pronunciations as well), and /ˈeɪ-/ (given as a variant in OED and Jones). The initial sound is now usually /a-/ as in cat, not /eɪ-/, as in pay. The final sound varies between /-ʒjʊə/ rhyming with pure /pjʊə/ (the dominant pronunciation) and /-ə/.
  • 2015 March 30, Greg Brooks, Dictionary of the British English Spelling System, Open Book Publishers, →ISBN, page 190:
    [] azure pronounced /ˈæzjʊə, ˈeɪzjʊə/ (also pronounced /ˈæzjə, ˈeɪzjə, ˈæʒə, ˈeɪʒə/)

French

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Pronunciation

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Verb

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azure

  1. inflection of azurer:
    1. first/third-person singular present indicative/subjunctive
    2. second-person singular imperative

Portuguese

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Noun

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azure m (uncountable)

  1. Alternative form of azur