Secondary color, first-class magic.
Radiating from the book was the light that lies on the far side of darkness, the light fantastic. It was a rather disappointing purple colour.
Whether it's magic, psychic energy, or wizard clothing, purple is often the color that represents these.
It's not the only mystical color, but in fiction, it's one of the most common, regardless of whether the color shows up on the good guys or the bad guys (although the latter is a bit more common thanks to Good Colors, Evil Colors
and Purple Is The New Black
This is one reason purple is one of the Common Mary Sue Traits
(and Graceful Ladies Like Purple
Can often overlap with Purple Is Powerful
, Purple Eyes
. Compare Gold and White Are Divine
and Emerald Power
open/close all folders
- Psylocke of X-Men has purple clothing, purple hair, and her psychic aura is purple.
- Raven from Teen Titans.
- Taken quite literally in the 1990 looseleaf edition of Who's Who in the DC Universe, which color-coded the borders of the entries. Heroes got red trim, villains were in black, supporting cast in blue, technology in yellow, and geography in green. Supernatural items and characters...were purple.
- Doctor Strange uses magic in many colors, but purple is one of his more common hues (after yellow, blue, and red).
- In The Princess and the Frog, the Mardi Gras colors were used to represent different characters. Green was used for Tiana and Naveen; gold was used for Mama Odie; and purple, as the most "unnatural" color, was used for Dr. Facilier.
- In the TV adaptation of Discworld's The Colour of Magic, the magic is represented as purple, and Rincewind's blue eyes suddenly turn this sheen as a sign of the spell trying to take over him. In the books the color of magic is actually the fictional 8th color, octarine, but violet is arguably the closest Roundworld representation. If it is an eighth color, it'd be shorter in wavelength than the seventh, like the glow of an ultraviolet "black light".
- Ghostbusters. Not something in the movie—the whole movie itself is suffused with a purple aura for this very reason.
- In The Last Dragon Chronicles all of the dragons have violet eyes. Also, if any human is mentioned as having violet eyes, you can bet they are integral to the plot.
- In Septimus Heap, the form of Magyk used by the ExtraOrdinary Wizards is purple, unlike the green of more generic Magyk.
- The Seventh Tower's primary magic system relies heavily on Hard Light and Color-Coded Wizardry, with violet being the most powerful color and, by extension, the color of the highest caste of the Chosen. Furthermore, whoever can master the magic of the Violet Keystone is, by extension, the rightful Emperor/Empress of the Chosen as Tal finds out when it turns out the sunstone he's been carrying around and using to fuel his magic for most of the series is the lost Keystone...
- In Stephen Woodworth's Through Violet Eyes, people born with the ability to channel the dead have violet eyes.
- Octarine, the colour of magic in the Discworld novels is "a sort of greeny purple".
- Alanna and her twin Thom from Song of the Lioness have particularly powerful magical gifts that come in the colour purple, and matching eyes. There's also the Constellation Cat, a magical sort-of-deity that comes to help mortal heroes in the form of a talking, black furred, purple-eyed cat. When he appears in Provost's Dog, the first thing anyone notices about him is the eyes.
Live Action TV
- In Merlin, Merlin had a purplish shirt for a while, now it's sometimes different colors. Morgana favored purple dresses in the beginning of the series, but her clothes have gotten darker since her Face-Heel Turn.
- The Lady of the Lake has a purple dress.
- As did Lamia and Alator, a magical enemy and ally, respectively.
- Inverted in Warehouse 13, where purple is the color of the liquid used to neutralize supernatural objects. Certain extremely-dangerous objects (such as Sylvia Plath's typewriter, causing anyone looking at it to commit suicide) are perpetually dosed in the liquid.
- Magic in Once Upon a Time often involves impressive billows of purple smoke.
- In an issue of InQuest Magazine, there was a joke article speculating if Magic: The Gathering added a sixth color, and it was purple, supposing a place and people even more mystical and mysterious than the places in Canon at the time.
- A line in "A Machine Spiritual (In the People's Key)" by Bright Eyes mentions that "in the jungle there are columns of purple light," which sounds mystical and mysterious, especially since it's framed by lines about history "stepping aside" and the human race starting over.
- Occurs a few times in Dungeons & Dragons:
- The Eldritch Blast of the Warlock is always colored purple in the various books' art. Several of the Warlock's powers are shown to glow purple.
- In 4th Edition, the Devas (reincarnating angels who have taken a mortal form) have purple skin and eyes.
- Much of the art of the Forgotten Realms depicting Mystra, the goddess of Magic, show her avatar (or mortal self) wearing a significant amount of purple.
- The Eladrins in 4th edition tend to favor purple in their clothing in much of the art.
- In Magic: The Gathering artwork, purple is occasionally used to signify black mana, especially where it would be inconvenient to use black in the art instead.
- Some Blue and White spells are also purple.
- Malifaux's Mass Empowering Event covered the eyes of those empowered with swirling silver-and-purple mist. The color is also associated with the Neverborn, who are all magical beings.
- In World of Warcraft, spells of the Arcane school have animations that glow light purple (with Shadow spells being darker purple, though that might be more a case of Purple Is The New Black.) And Epic items (the second-most powerful class of items in the game, below only Legendary items) have their titles in purple.
- Minecraft has this. Nether portals are made from dark purple volcanic glass and are filled with some sort of purple glowing stuff. They also suck in purple smoke, as do Endermen, whose eyes glow purple. Their dimension is also home to the Enderdragon, whose eyes and mouth glow purple, and floating pink and purple crystals that heal the dragon.
- In Dawn of War series, warp anomalies (and chaos magic in general) look like purple flames.
- In BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger, Rachel's Unlimited form is distinguished by a purple glow.
- In Pokémon, purple represents ghost type Pokemon, and in the card game, psychic is represented by purple, whereas in the game, Psychic is represented with pink.
- In Skylanders, purple represents the Magic element. This almost certainly has to do with the fact that the most well-known character, Spyro the Dragon, is both a magic-type and known for his purple color.
- In Sonic and the Black Knight, the sorceress Merlina has a purple cape and purple hair.
- The Super Smash Bros. series has Ganondorf, Mewtwo, and Crazy Hand's evil attacks appear with a purple flame effect.
- In Golden Sun and its sequels, Jupiter (wind elemental) Adepts are strongly associated with the color purple, and frequently have purple hair or eyes. Jupiter is also the element most associated with extrasensory Psychic Powers, such as precognition and telepathy.
- In Golden Sun: Dark Dawn, the fortune-telling sisters in Harapa dress mainly in purple, and oracular Shrine Maiden Himi wears the traditional garb of her station accented with purple sashes and hair decorations. Meanwhile, Karis subverts the above Jupiter association, being a purple-eyed, purple-wearing Jupiter Adept with no extrasensory abilities (for which she's grateful).
- The Vanu Sovereignty in both of the PlanetSide games is a faction of humanity that effectively worship the nearly-magical ancient Vanu technology as they futilely try to understand it. Their units and soldiers are painted bright purple with cyan and gray highlights.
- Conguration magic in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is purple, along with most everything related to it, especially soul gems and the Soul Cairn.
- In Star Wars: The Old Republic, some Sith display glowing purple eyes whilst drawing heavily on the Dark Side. The Sith Inquisitor in particular demonstrates this whenever they use their Force Walk ability to bind Force Ghosts to them.
- The Mysterious Fragments in Sir You Are Being Hunted are a dark purple similar to that of obsidian in Minecraft. Also, if an item is Mysterious (such as the Mysterious Fragments), the text denoting that fact is purple.
- In Homestuck;
- Rose Lalonde types with purple text, has Purple Eyes, and often wears purple clothing. She has a deep interest in grimdark hororterrors and dual-wields magic wands.
- Eridan Ampora wears a purple cape, has a purple tuft in his hair, and has purple blood. He has quite an interest in wizards, even becoming a practitioner of Black Magic (though he claims magic isn't real and insists on referring to it as "white science".)
- In Arthur, King of Time and Space, Nimue always wears purple. That said, Merlin wears orange and Morgan le Fay, like the rest of her family, wears green.
- This blog post discusses the use of purple with green at the Haunted Mansion to create a supernatural atmosphere.
- The main logo for Welcome to Night Vale, about a small town where the supernatural is an everyday occurrence, has a purple logo. While descriptions of characters are kept deliberately vague, most fan-art will give depict them as having purple hair, tattoos, skin or third-eyes.
- A lot of Harry Potter merchandise includes purple on the product and/or packaging. For example, Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans often come in purple packages.
- Violet and purple is frequently used in neopagan, magical, and new age websites.
- The crown chakra, which is supposed to relate to one's psychic ability, is often associated with the color violet.
- There is a small political party in Germany focusing on spirituality and esoterica. Its name is Die Violetten, "The Violets".
- Violet (which purple resemles) is the most intense spectrum color perceivable by humans. As such, violet/purple glow is exceedingly rare in nature and indicates extremely high energies and temperature.
- Meanwhile, purple and magenta which often are substituted for violet do not even exist. They are transitional colors invented by our brains in an attempt to bridge two non-overlapping parts of the spectrum. Then again...