# Line of purples

## Edge of visible color / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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In color theory, the **line of purples** or **purple boundary** is the locus on the edge of the chromaticity diagram formed between extreme spectral red and violet. Except for these endpoints of the line, colors on the line are non-spectral (no monochromatic light source can generate them). Rather, every color on the line is a unique mixture in a ratio of fully saturated red and fully saturated violet, the two spectral color endpoints of visibility on the spectrum of pure hues. Colors on the line and spectral colors are the only ones that are fully saturated in the sense that, for any point on the line, no other possible color being a mixture of red and violet is more saturated than it.

Unlike spectral colors, which may be implemented, for example, by the nearly monochromatic light of a laser, with precision much finer than human chromaticity resolution, colors on the line are more difficult to depict. The sensitivity of each type of human cone cell to *both* spectral red and spectral violet, being at the opposite endpoints of the line and at the extremes of the visible spectrum, is very low. (See luminosity function.) Therefore, common purple colors are not highly bright.

The line of purples, a theoretical boundary of chromaticity, is distinct from "purples", a more general denomination of colors, which also refers to less than fully saturated colors (see shades of purple and shades of pink for examples) that form the interior of a triangle between white and the line of purples in the CIE chromaticity diagram.