136 variations of Brazilian skin colors

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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. These English translations were published by the website Africa Is A Country, which says the translations were by Lilia Moritz Schwarcz of the University of Sao Paulo and edited by Achal Prabhala.

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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

Cor-de-canela: Cinnamon-colored

Cor-de-cuia: Gourd-colored

Cor-de-leite: Milk-colored (i.e. milk-white)

Cor-de-ouro: Gold-colored (i.e. golden)

Cor-de-rosa: Pink

Cor-firme: Steady-colored

Crioula: Creole

Encerada: Polished

Enxofrada: Pallid

Esbranquecimento: Whitening

Escura: Dark

Escurinha: Very dark

Fogoio: Having fiery-colored hair

Galega: Galician or Portuguese

Galegada: Somewhat like a Galician or Portuguese

Jambo: Light-skinned (the color of a type of apple)

Laranja: Orange

Lilas: Lilac

Loira: Blonde

Loira-clara: Light blonde

Loura: Blonde

Lourinha: Petite blonde

Malaia: Malaysian woman

Marinheira: Sailor-woman

Marrom: Brown

Meio-amarela: Half-yellow

Meio-branca: Half-white

Meio-morena: Half dark-skinned

Meio-preta: Half-black

Melada: Honey-colored

Mestica: Half-caste/mestiza

Miscigenacao: Miscegenation

Mista: Mixed

Morena: Dark-skinned, brunette

Morena-bem-chegada: Very nearly morena

Morena-bronzeada: Sunburnt morena

Morena-canelada: Somewhat cinnamon-colored morena

Morena-castanha: Chestnut-colored morena

Morena-clara: Light-skinned morena

Morena-cor-de-canela: Cinnamon-colored morena

Morena-jambo: Light-skinned morena

Morenada: Somewhat morena

Morena-escura: Dark morena

Morena-fechada: Dark morena

Morenao: Dark-complexioned man

Morena-parda: Dark morena

Morena-roxa: Purplish morena

Morena-ruiva: Red-headed morena

Morena-trigueira: Swarthy, dusky morena

Moreninha: Petite morena

Mulata: Mulatto girl

Mulatinha: Little mulatto girl

Negra: Negress

Negrota: Young negress

Palida: Pale

Paraíba: From Paraíba

Parda: Brown

Parda-clara: Light brown

Parda-morena: Brown morena

Parda-preta: Black-brown

Polaca: Polish woman

Pouco-clara: Not very light

Pouco-morena: Not very dark-complexioned

Pretinha: Black – either young, or small

Puxa-para-branco: Somewhat toward white

Quase-negra: Almost negro

Queimada: Sunburnt

Queimada-de-praia: Beach sunburnt

Queimada-de-sol: Sunburnt

Regular: Regular, normal

Retinta: Deep-dyed, very dark

Rosa: Rose-coloured (or the rose itself)

Rosada: Rosy

Rosa-queimada: Sunburnt-rosy

Roxa: Purple

Ruiva: Redhead

Russo: Russian

Sapecada: Singed

Sarará: Yellow-haired negro

Sarauba (poss. dialect): Untranslatable

Tostada: Toasted

Trigo: Wheat

Trigueira: Brunette

Turva: Murky

Verde: Green

Vermelha: Red

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