Coventry and this Colour Blue
The city’s link with the colour started with ‘Coventry Blue’, a dye used in the city’s medieval weaving trade. This shade of blue was unique to Coventry and came from a secret recipe for the dye including water from the River Sherbourne and the quality and type of woad plant used.
The recipe was never written down so was lost to history, but Coventry’s connection to blue can still be see across the city today, from the CCFC kit through to the blue-ribbon roundabout.
Any archaeological cloth samples would be so affected by light and time that it wouldn’t give an indication of what Coventry blue was truly like.
A good guess is that the colour would be based on the shades of blue produced by woad dyeing. Woad is a plant which can be used to make dye – in medieval times it would have been imported as native woad did not produce a good enough dye. The dye chemical in the woad plant is the same as in the indigo plant which gives denim its distinctive colour, so woad dye would give a colour akin to denim blue, which of course has its own variance.
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