Since the very beginning of the Chinese civilization, yellow has been placed in a position far above all the other colors:the Chinese civilization originated in the Loess(yellow earth) Plateau , the mother river of the Chinese nation is the Yellow River. As long as theChinese are concerned, their love for the color yellow has gone to the extent of reverence.


The Chinese nation’s respect and worship of the yellow color is closely related to the tradition of the farming based civilization. The Chinese civilization originated in the Yellow River basin,where ancient Chinese turned the yellow earth into arable lands. They sowed yellow seeds in the lands and irrigated the lands with water from the Yellow River.Their hardwork brought them good harvests of yellow grain.


Yellow pigment was the first pigment ever made in China. Ancient Chinese learnt to make yellow pigment from gardenia fruit which contains crocin which is a yellow coloring agent. After the Northern and Southern Dynasties,people discovered more yellow dyes,including vegetable based ones, e.g.radix rehmanniae, ash flower(flos sophorae) ,amur cork-trees, turmeric, cudrania tricuspidata,and mineral based ones, e.g.massicot.


It was the Book on Changes (Yi Jing) that brought the yellow color to the cultural level:“The sky is black and the earth is yellow.”Ancient Chinese were very particular about the Five Elements and the five corresponding colors. In the series of associations between the Five Colors and cardinal directions, yellow is associated with the center and therefore is the principal color of the Five. The first Chinese dictionary of character forming (Shuo Wen Jie Zi) defines the word “yellow” in a concise way: ““Yellow
is the common color of earth that carries
life and sunlight that nourishes life”.
Therefore, yellow is the central color and
the harmonized color, representing the
source of life as well as the center of all


In addition tothe close association with earth and nature, yellow color is also the symbol of power, wealth, brightness and wisdom. It was once used exclusively bythe royalfamily and be a reda strong religious connotation. One may finda wide range of application of the color yellowin Buddhist architectures, clothes of monks, as well as decorations in the monasteries,


By cnintro

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