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Verdigris is the common name for a green pigment obtained through the application of acetic acid to copper plates or the natural patina formed when copper, brass or bronze is weathered and exposed to air or seawater over a period of time. The name verdigris comes from the Middle English vertegrez, from the Old French verte grez, an alteration of vert-de-Grèce ("green of Greece"). Used as a pigment in paintings and other art objects (as green color) since ancient Greece, it was originally made by hanging copper plates over hot vinegar in a sealed pot until a green crust formed on the copper. The vivid green color of copper(II) acetate made this form of verdigris a much used pigment. Until the 19th century, verdigris was the most vibrant green pigment available and was frequently used in painting. Verdigris was sometimes used to illustrate cyan colors in early color wheels.