… continued well into the 16th century. It was of the Murex shellfish, obtained by Phoenician sailors who trolled the coastlines for royalty.
First used on wool, its reds, blues, purples, and violets were available to those who could afford it. Purpurea, a plant root, was discovered as a fine source for deep blues to purples. Both were called “Tyrinian” after the emperor.
(photo: Purpurea root)