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136 variations of Brazilian skin colors

Published on NewsOK Modified: June 22, 2014 at 3:07 am •  Published: June 22, 2014

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — When Brazilians were given a chance to describe their skin color, they came up with 136 shades and variations. The survey was done in 1976 by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, and was published again in a 2011 Congressional document titled: The Constitutional Commission on Justice and Citizenship.

The list illustrates how Brazilians see themselves, a far more complex color system than simply black or white. English translations are provided.


Acastanhada: Somewhat chestnut-colored

Agalegada: Somewhat like a Galician

Alva: Snowy white

Alva escura: Dark snowy white

Alvarenta (not in dictionary; poss. dialect): Snowy white

Alvarinta: Snowy white

Alva rosada: Pinkish white

Alvinha: Snowy white

Amarela: Yellow

Amarelada: Yellowish

Amarela-queimada: Burnt yellow

Amarelosa: Yellowy

Amorenada: Somewhat dark-skinned

Avermelhada: Reddish

Azul: Blue

Azul-marinho: Sea blue

Baiano: From Bahia

Bem branca: Very white

Bem clara: Very pale

Bem morena: Very dark-skinned

Branca: White

Branca-avermelhada: White going on for red

Branca-melada: Honey-colored white

Branca-morena: White but dark-skinned

Branca-palida: Pale white

Branca-queimada: Burnt white

Branca-sardenta: Freckled white

Branca-suja: Off-white

Branquica: Whitish

Branquinha: Very white

Bronze: Bronze-colored

Bronzeada: Sun-tanned

Bugrezinha-escura: Dark-skinned India

Burro-quando-foge: Disappearing donkey (i.e. nondescript) humorous

Cabocla: Copper-colored (refers to Indians)

Cabo-verde: From Cabo Verde (Cape Verde)

Cafe: Coffee-colored

Cafe-com-leite: Cafe au lait

Canela: Cinnamon

Canelada: Somewhat like cinnamon

Cardao: Colour of the cardoon, or thistle (blue-violet)

Castanha: Chestnut

Castanha-clara: Light chestnut

Castanha-escura: Dark chestnut

Chocolate: Chocolate-colored

Clara: Light-colored, pale

Clarinha: Light-colored, pale

Cobre: Copper-colored

Corada: With a high color

Cor-de-cafe: Coffee-colored

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