Languages › Mandarin Mandarin Colors Share Flipboard Email Print Mongkol Chuewong/Getty Images Mandarin Vocabulary Mandarin History and Culture Pronunciation Understanding Chinese Characters By Qiu Gui Su Chinese Language Expert Qiu Gui Su is a native Mandarin speaker who has taught Mandarin Chinese for over 20 years. our editorial process Qiu Gui Su Updated November 04, 2019 Learning the names of colors is essential in any language, but Mandarin colors give you more than just a tool for descriptions: They also have strong cultural meanings. Cultural Meanings Red is a lucky color, representing prosperity, goodness, and happiness. If cash is given as a present, it is placed in a red envelope. White envelopes are never used because white is associated with death. The opposite of red is black, which represents evil and suffering. Although white is used in funerals, it is not associated with evil, but rather the absence of life, as during winter. Yellow is the color of the soil and represents earthliness and centeredness. It is also a color strongly associated with China, as the Chinese are descendants of the Yellow Emperor. Color Translation Color Pinyin Traditional Simplified white bái sè 白色 白色 blue lán sè 藍色 蓝色 yellow huáng sè 黃色 黄色 green lǜ sè 綠色 绿色 red hóng sè 紅色 红色 orange jú sè or chéng sè 橘色 or 橙色 橘色 or 橙色 brown kāfēi sè 咖啡色 咖啡色 black hēi sè 黑色 黑色 purple zǐ sè 紫色 紫色 grey huī sè 灰色 灰色 Cite this Article Format mla apa chicago Your Citation Su, Qiu Gui. "Mandarin Colors." ThoughtCo, Aug. 28, 2020, thoughtco.com/mandarin-colors-2279627. Su, Qiu Gui. (2020, August 28). Mandarin Colors. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/mandarin-colors-2279627 Su, Qiu Gui. "Mandarin Colors." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/mandarin-colors-2279627 (accessed May 18, 2021). copy citation The Fundamentals of Chinese New Year Chinese Wedding Gifts How to Plan a Traditional Chinese Wedding The Definition of the Bopomofo Chinese Phonetic System History of Mandarin Chinese Learning Mandarin Chinese Choosing a Chinese Name as a Student Why Learn Mandarin Chinese? The Modern Chinese Wedding Ceremony and Banquet Learning Mandarin vs Cantonese Where Is Mandarin Spoken? An Insider's Guide to Mandarin Chinese Pronunciation How to pronounce Li Keqiang, China's premier Differentiating Between Shanghainese and Mandarin Understanding the Use of Numbers in Mandarin Chinese How to Pronounce the Chinese City "Shenzhen"