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About these coordinates About these coordinates
— Color coordinates —
Hex triplet #CC8899
RGBB (r, g, b) (204, 136, 153)
HSV (h, s, v) (345°, 33%, 80%)
Source [Unsourced]
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)

Puce (often misspelled as "puse","peuse" or "peuce") is a color that is defined as ranging from reddish-brown to purplish-brown, with the latter being the more widely-accepted definition found in reputable sources. Puce is a shade of red. The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) dates the use of "puce" (in couleur puce) from 1787. The first recorded use of puce as a color name in French was in the 1300s. [1]The word comes from French; puce literally means "flea", as the usual flea coloration is either dark reddish-brown or dark purplish-brown; specifically, it is the color of the belly of a flea.

According to available sources, the etymology of "puce" is French "puce" from Old French "pulce", from Latin "pūlic-", "pūlex".

In popular culture


  • A collection of Walt Kelly's influential Pogo comics was called "The Pogo Puce Stamp Catalog". It had a puce cover.
  • In the Dilbert comic strip, the boss' favorite color is puce, but he doesn't know that because he is mistakenly thinking of a primary color, as he doesn't know what puce is.


  • In the computer game NetHack potions are randomly generated with different colors or other descriptions. One of the colors is puce.



  • In the number "A more humane Mikado (Let the Punishment Fit the Crime)" in the operetta The Mikado by Gilbert and Sullivan, the title character sings of the dire fate of the woman "who stains her gray hair puce".
  • In the song "I Love to Color" off his children's album Pockets, Joe Wise talks at length about the characteristics and uses of the color puce.
  • Puce features as a color in Ken Nordine's 1967 Spoken-Word Jazz album 'Colors'.
  • In the song "I Heart Fags" by MC Frontalot, a pioneer of nerdcore hip-hop, Mc Frontalot says "Fags are great, they got hundreds of uses, you can see them on TV explaining what puce is."

Film and Television

  • Kenneth Anger made a short film called Puce Moment in 1949.
  • Santa Claus: The Movie referenced "puce" for the color the magic lollipops that made children fly, including a humorous remark about it: "If this ever takes off, we could make this in liquid form: Puce Juice."
  • In the film Monsters, Inc., Sullivan comments on having "no idea what puce is" when sorting files to take to the office. He learns soon after.
  • In the episode "I Was a Teenage Monster" from the American television show The Monkees, a Frankenstein-type monster (Richard Kiel) looks around his laboratory and says "I would do this room in lavender and puce."
  • In the British television show The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, one slogan for the fictional Grot stores is "Grot has lots of things that aren’t of any use, some of them are red, some of them are green and some of them are puce."
  • In the 1988 made-for-tv movie "Dance 'til Dawn", the prom theme is "Paris in Puce"
  • In "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." episode S02E16, "The Dippy Blonde Affair," first broadcast 07 Jan 66, Napoleon Solo stalls a sales clerk by asking if the dress he has selected is available in puce.
  • In The BBC television show "Waiting For God" Season 3 Disk 1 Episode 3 "Looking For Work". Marion Ballard says to Diana Trent about her husband Geoffrey Ballard "It's about my fellow traveler, little Geoffie. His aura has become quite puce since Tom got that job."


  1. ^ Maerz and Paul A Dictionary of Color New York:1930 McGraw-Hill Page 202; Color Sample of Puce: Page 37 Plate 7 Color Sample H4
  2. ^ List of the Knights of the Round Table:
  3. ^ [ Knight%22&source=bl&ots=FTimreU0Pd&sig=ag7TDu_bkLRY3ANvAI5ZAwUVm5E&hl=en&ei=Sow5S4eRJYykswP3k5 DOBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CBYQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=%22Puce%20Knight%22&f=false Le Morte d'Arthur by Thomas Malory--Google Books result for the Puce Knight:]

Simple English

This box shows the colour puce.

Puce is a deep rose or brownish-purple colour. Chinese dried plums can also be said to be puce coloured.

The name is from the French word puce which means "flea". Some people say that the colour name comes from the colour of a squashed flea or the colour of a flea full of blood. Other people say that colour name comes from the flea's droppings of digested blood, which spread out in deep red stain when water contacts them.

On the other hand, the colour name may refer to blue-lavender of the Pennyroyal flower, also named puce in French. The name comes from the use of strong-smelling Pennyroyal to ward off fleas.[1]

ColoursList of colours
Cyan Magenta Black Grey Silver White
Red Orange Yellow Green Blue Indigo Violet
Gold Olive Purple Navy Brown Pink


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