Monday, May 29, 2017

Exploring "Italian pink" and "Dutch pink"

"Dutch pink"and "Italian pink", probably actually green and yellow pigments, are mentioned to in a note in De Arte Illuminandi (Thompson and Hamilton 43).

68 For the identification of these prugnameroli as buckthorn berries (buckthorn = It. spincervino, spino gerbino), fruits of varieties of the buckthorn, Rhamnus, see Cennino, ed.cit., II, 32, n. 1. Two pigments were and are derived from Rhamnus berries: a yellow and a green. The product of the unripe berries is the Giallo santo (cf. M. P. Merrifield, op.cit., I, clxiv), known in English by the extraordinary names, "Italian Pink" and "Dutch Pink." The juice of the ripe berries yields the pigmentum e fructibus rhamni catharticae, succus veridis, listed by H. L. Gerth van Wijk, Dictionary of Plantnames, I, 1135, among the technical products of R. catharticus, the color known in English as "Sap green," the Italian verde di vescica (so called because the inspissaded juice was preserved in bladders), the Safftgrien of Valentin Boltz, who specifies, ed. cit., p. 75, that it is to be made from "krutzber, die man auch nent hagenberlin," gathered "ungeforlich vierzehn tag vor Michaelis" (that is, about September 15). For the yellow color, ibid., p. 72, "Du must gar eigentlichen warnemmen der zyt diser hagenberlin im Augustmonat, daz sy nit zu satt oder zu alt werden." If, therefore, in Alsace, the color came out yellow if the berries were gathered in August, and green if they were gathered about the middle of September, we may probably assume that the quality of green yielded by these Rhamnus fruits was not entirely definite. It must have varied in it's content of yellow, according to the date and nature of the season. (Thompson and Hamilton 43)
As well as the Introduction of Medieval and Renaissance Treatises on the Arts of Painting: Original Texts with English Translations by Mrs. Mary P. Merrifield.
Giallo santo was a kind of yellow lake, which was made from various plants. It was sometimes prepared from the berries of the buckthorn (note leads to p 708, her translation of the Paduan Manuscript recipe) (spincervino)...
The French call pigments of this description "stil de grain," and include under them not only these pigments which are a pure yellow colour, but such as incline to green. The English term for this class of pigments is or was "pink" Thus we have "Dutch pink," "Italian pink," "brown pink," &etc. (Merrifield I, clxiv)

So, for tonight, that is my search and citation of sources. Pigment Compendium also references Italian, Dutch and brown pink but that transcription is for another day.

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