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Humans Didn't Even See The Color Blue Until Modern Times, Research Suggests


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Woah.

philologist called Lazarus Geiger decided to follow up on this discovery, and analysed ancient Icelandic, Hindu, Chinese, Arabic and Hebrew texts, to find no mention of the word blue. And, when you think about it, why would they need one? Other than the sky, there isn't really much in nature that is inherently a vibrant blue.

In fact, the first society to have a word for the colour blue was the Egyptians, the only culture that could produce blue dyes. From then, it seems that awareness of the colour spread throughout the modern world.

But just because there was no word for blue, does that mean our ancestors couldn't see it?

There have been various studies conducted to try to work this out, which you can read more about in Loria's feature, but one of the most compelling was conducted by Jules Davidoff, a psychologist from Goldsmiths University of London, who worked with the Himba tribe from Namibia. In their language, there is no word for blue and no real distinction between green and blue.

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