The Colour Purple

Wearing purple is a positive celebration of ageing. Wear it with pride and promote Respect for Seniors

Certain colours can have a powerful effect on our minds and emotions, and none more so than the colour purple.

While it may not be the most commonly-seen colour in our daily life, it has long been linked in our human memory with royalty, luxury, death and mourning, church ritual and human bravery and courage.

The history of purple goes back at least to the 8th Century before Christ, when the ancient Phoenicians were able to produce it as a dye from the secretions of a rare type of snail found on the eastern Mediterranean seashores.

But purple-dyed cloth was so expensive to produce that only royalty and similarly wealthy citizens could afford to buy and wear it. The ancient Romans used the colour to denote high social rank and status.

The Bible records several incidents relating to purple cloth: the gospel of Mark tell us that after his arrest, Jesus was mocked and pilloried by his Roman military gaolers who put a purple robe on him to denote his alleged status as “King of the Jews” . Also in the record of the early Christian church we are told of a convert to Christianity called Lydia who was “a dealer in purple cloth” and therefore, by inference, a wealthy businesswoman.

Nowadays, purple dye is manufactured in many shades to suit modern tastes in clothing, interior decoration, packaging and so on.

But essentially this richly emotive colour, purple, still signifies dignity, strength, spirituality, wisdom and respect.

No better colour could be used to symbolise a positive celebration of ageing - which gives respect and honour to all our elders and senior generation of citizens.

Let’s wear it with pride.