Next to orange and opposite violet, red is the hue at the long wavelength end of the visible spectrum of light. Its main wavelength is between 625 and 740 nanometres. It is the complimentary color of cyan and is a primary color in the RGB and CMYK color models. Reds range in color from bright yellow-tinged scarlet and vermillion to bluish-red crimson, with shades ranging from delicate red pink to dark red burgundy.
One of the first colors utilized in prehistoric art was ochre red pigment. In rituals, the Ancient Egyptians and Mayans dyed their faces crimson, while Roman generals dyed their bodies red to commemorate triumphs. It was also a popular hue in China, where it was used to decorate early ceramics as well as royal gates and walls.:60–61 The nobles and affluent wore vivid crimson garments colored with kermes and cochineal throughout the Renaissance. The first synthetic red dyes, which replaced traditional dyes, were introduced in the nineteenth century. Red became a symbol of Communism during the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917, when Soviet Russia adopted a red flag, which was later copied by China, Vietnam, and other communist countries.
Red has long been linked with sacrifice, danger, and bravery, as it is the color of blood. Red is also the color most often associated with heat, activity, passion, sexuality, wrath, love, and joy, according to modern polls in Europe and the United States. It is the hue of pleasure and good fortune in China, India, and many other Asian countries.:39–63
When the human eye perceives light with a wavelength of between 625 and 740 nanometers, it sees red. It is a main color in the RGB color scheme, and the light slightly beyond this range is known as infrared, or below red, and is invisible to human sight, but it may be felt as heat. Red is the hue elicited by light that stimulates neither the S nor the M (short and medium wavelength) cone cells of the retina, as well as a fading activation of the L (long-wavelength) cone cells, according to optics.
Primates can see the whole spectrum of colors that humans can perceive, but many animals, such as dogs and cattle, have dichromacy, which means they can see blues and yellows but not red and green (both are seen as gray). For example, bulls cannot perceive the red color of a bullfighter’s cape, but they are disturbed by its movement.
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