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What is a fancy word for green?

What is a fancy word for green?

Green is a color that is associated with nature, growth, renewal, and the environment. While basic words like “green” or “greenish” may be used to describe the color, there are also more sophisticated and fancy words that can be used in different contexts.


One of the most formal and fancy words for the color green is “viridian.” Viridian has its roots in the Latin word “viridis” which means green or greenish. In terms of its technical definition, viridian refers to a blue-green pigment made with chromic oxide. It is considered one of the darker shades of green.

Viridian is often used in more academic or technical contexts when referring to the specific pigment color. For example, an art historian may refer to the viridian hues used in a painting. Viridian was a popular pigment color used by famous Impressionist painters like Claude Monet and Paul Cézanne.

Beyond its strict definition, viridian evokes an image of a rich, emerald green color. Calling something viridian implies it is a very deep and almost bluish-tinged green. For example, one may refer to the viridian waters of a lake or the viridian leaves of a rainforest.


“Emerald” is another fancy word that is often used to refer to the green color. The name comes from the emerald gemstone which is known for its striking green color.

In addition to referring specifically to the gemstone, emerald can be used as an adjective to describe a brilliant green color likened to that of the gem. For example, you may refer to an emerald green dress, emerald grass, or emerald eyes. Describing something as emerald evokes an image of a bold, rich green.

Emerald is considered more poetic and literary than a basic word like “green.” It has an air of elegance and luxury to it thanks to its association with the precious gemstone.


Chartreuse is a term used to describe a yellowish or lime green color. The name comes from the green French liqueur called Chartreuse which has that distinctive green color.

While chartreuse may refer specifically to the French liqueur, it is also used as a color term in fashion and design. It refers to a brighter, yellow-tinged shade of green. Some examples include chartreuse dresses, nails, or graphic design elements.

Chartreuse has a bold, playful quality as a color word. Other shades of green evoke nature, while chartreuse has a more artificial or man-made feel. This gives it a fanciful and whimsical nuance.


Jade is a term used for shades of light green. It is named after the jade gemstone which comes in various hues of green. The term evokes blue-tinged, pale greens resembling the color of the ornamental stone.

Describing something as jade green implies it is a pastel, almost translucent shade of green. Colors described as jade include sea foam greens, pale sage greens, and willow greens. Jade conjures calming, soothing images thanks to these soft color associations.

In Chinese culture, jade holds special meaning and is considered a royal gemstone. Using “jade” to describe a green color therefore adds a sense of elegance and refinement.

Kelly green

Kelly green refers to a bright, vivid shade of green. It is an American term that originated in the early 1900s. While its exact origins are ambiguous, it is commonly accepted that kelly green got its name from the last name of an Irish-American clan called the Kellys who wore green in their dyes and fabrics.

Unlike other fancy color terms, kelly green is more playful and bold. It evokes images of bright shamrocks, green beer on St. Patrick’s Day, or a leprechaun’s attire. Other greens summon thoughts of nature, while kelly green has an unnaturally vibrant, exciting feel. This makes it fanciful in its own right.

Moss green

Moss green describes a deep green color reminiscent of moss. It sits between forest green and olive green on the color wheel. Moss greens take inspiration directly from nature and conjure images of lush, verdant mosses covering rocks or forest floors.

Using “moss green” instead of just saying “green” adds a sense of earthiness and organic richness. It implies a natural, unadulterated green. Moss green is popular in home décor since it calls to mind the colors found in a serene forest setting.

Myrtle green

Myrtle green is a sophisticated term for a green with bluish undertones, similar to a pine or fir tree. Myrtle trees and shrubs have delicate leaves that are a cool-toned green with hints of blue and gray. This gives rise to the color myrtle green.

Myrtle greens are elegant and have an almost minty freshness to them. They are lighter and brighter than forest greens but still decidedly natural. Describing something as myrtle green implies it has a crisp, verdant color reminiscent of the leaves of a myrtle plant.

Olive green

Olive green is a subdued, grayish-green that resembles unripe olives. The color matches the tones you see on raw green olives. Compared to brighter greens, olive green feels more muted, earthy, and neutral.

Using “olive green” evokes a natural, raw, and understated green color. It differs from the boldness of emerald green or the brightness of chartreuse. Olive green implies a mature, organic shade associated with the olives themselves.

Sage green

Sage green refers to a pale, silvery green resembling the color of sage leaves. It is quite similar to the green tones you see on plants in the Salvia family that are commonly used as herbs.

Sage green carries the same earthy yet ethereal qualities associated with the herb. It is somber and soothing but also fresh with a vibrant energy. Describing something as sage green implies a naturally sophisticated, pale green color.

Sea green

Sea green is self-explanatory – it describes green with a bluish aqua quality reminiscent of ocean colors. The exact shade can vary from a pale, misty green to deeper jade greens.

Using “sea green” evokes images of ocean waves and seafoam. It has a cool, breezy feeling that calls to mind being near the shore. Sea greens are universally flattering and remind us of beautiful beach landscapes.

Shamrock green

Shamrock green is a bright, medium green color that resembles the shade of four-leaf clovers. It is a quintessentially Irish color strongly associated with St. Patrick’s Day and Irish pride.

Shamrock greens are youthful and punchy. They have a cheerful charm to them reminiscent of St. Patrick’s Day revelry. Describing something as shamrock green implies it has that perfect, luck-of-the-Irish shade of green.

Forest green

Forest green refers to a very deep, verdant green seen in forest settings. It is markedly richer than staple greens like lawn green or olive green.

Using “forest green” evokes images of deep, lush forests with conifers and deciduous trees. It implies an unfettered, intensely natural green. Forest green also has associations with Ivy League schools that often use the color in their uniforms and apparel.

Mint green

Mint green is a bright, cool pastel green. It has a clean, crisp, and refreshing quality reminiscent of both mint leaves and mint-flavored foods and drinks.

Describing something as mint green implies it is a pale green with cool undertones leaning toward blue and gray. It conjures images of mint leaves and suggests something is both relaxing and rejuvenating.

Jungle green

Jungle green refers to a deeper, tropical shade of green associated with the lush greenery of jungles. It has a vibrant, almost neon appearance.

Using “jungle green” implies an intensely saturated green color you’d see in tropical plants and rainforests. It feels wild, exotic, and punchy. Jungle green also sometimes refers to camouflage green.

Absinthe green

Absinthe green describes a yellow-green color inspired by the legendary alcoholic drink absinthe. It has an unnaturally vivid, almost fluorescent quality.

The name absinthe green calls to mind the mysterious allure and effects of the vivid green drink. Describing something as absinthe green implies it has an otherworldly, intense shade of green.

Army green

Army green refers to the darker olive drab greens and khaki greens used in military uniforms and gear. The exact shades can vary across different branches and time periods.

Using “army green” implies a utilitarian, subdued shade associated with military dress. It has a rugged, serious feel compared to brighter or more exotic greens. Army greens are conservative but command respect.

Avocado green

Avocado green describes the mid-tone, yellowy-green shade of the outer flesh of avocados. It differs from the deeper green of the inner flesh or pit of the avocado.

Avocado green has a pleasant earthiness but also feels retro thanks to its use in 1970s home décor. Describing something as avocado green calls to mind harvest colors and the rustic appeal of avocados themselves.

Bice green

Bice green is a grayish-blue green that resembles the color of green bice gemstones. Bice is an aluminum oxide mineral that naturally forms in that blue-green color.

The appeal of bice green comes from its rarity and possibly artificial appearance. While most greens evoke nature, bice green feels more like a man-made hue. Using “bice green” implies a cool, smokey blue-green color.

Brunswick green

Brunswick green is a very deep, rich green color with subtle blue undertones. Its name comes from Brunswick County in England where nobility traditionally wore the shade.

Compared to forest greens, Brunswick green has a darker, more elegant appeal. Describing fabric, apparel, or décor as Brunswick green implies a formal, almost black-tinged shade.

Celadon green

Celadon green refers to a pale, grayish shade of green with just a hint of blue. It is named after the green glaze used on ancient Chinese celadon pottery and ceramics.

Celadon greens are universally flattering and have an antique appearance. Using “celadon green” implies a light green with gray or blue undertones inspired by Chinese artistry.


There are myriad fancy words that can be used to describe shades of green beyond basic terms like “green” or “light green.” Flowery words like emerald, viridian, and shamrock summon rich images of nature and speak to the verdancy of green.

More unusual terms like absinthe green or celadon green have associations with exotic drinks or antique art forms. Whatever the nuance, fancy color names allow us to paint a more vivid picture and breathe life into our descriptions of the endlessly diverse color green.

So next time you want to refer to a kelly green dress, pea green walls, or harlequin green nails, dip into this list of fancy terms to find the perfect descriptor for the brilliant green shade you have in mind.

Key Green Shades

Shade Description
Viridian Deep bluish green
Emerald Jewel-toned rich green
Chartreuse Vibrant lime green