Part of speech: noun
Origin: Greek, mid 1800s
The art of painting in several colors, especially as applied to ancient pottery, sculpture, and architecture.
Examples of Polychromy in a sentence
"The artist’s use of vivid polychromy is what makes his sculptures so unique."
"The ruins featured faint traces of their original polychromy."
Popularity Over Time
The word polychromy originated from the combination of the word “polychrome” with the letter “y”. While polychrome came into prominence through French, it originally came from the Greek word polukhrōmos, which comes from the combination of the words “polu” (many) + “khroma” (color).
Did you Know?
While Greco-Roman buildings and sculptures are famously depicted in flawless white marble, the ancient world was actually much more colorful than you would assume. Ancient artists used polychromy to decorate their creations in bright, vivid colors. Many of these colors either faded due to the environment or were scrubbed off over time.