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"Apfelgrün" Topic

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887 hits since 20 Jan 2018
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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jeffreyw320 Jan 2018 6:55 a.m. PST

So, Austrian Facings mavens…

I'm interested in knowing what Apple-Green actually looked like--not so much for painting Austrians, but because there is a description of the Russian artillery carriages of the time as being Apple Green, and I don't find that phrase anywhere else (and not in Russian source).

I've seen an Austrian reference (in watercolor, I believe) someone put up here a while ago, (1780s?) that had it as a very blue green, which matches with a Viskovatov period watercolor I've seen.

Then there's this that von Winterfeldt put up


Otoh, modern versions (which came up in the "Red" thread today, look Granny-Smith-like, and I'm guessing that's not correct.

Any ideas as to the exact color and pigment used?

Oliver Schmidt20 Jan 2018 7:11 a.m. PST

In 1801, a German enyclopaedia:


knows three kinds of Apfelgrün.

Dark apple-green is made from two parts Gummigutti and one part Berliner Blau.

The apple-green proper is made from two parts Gummigutti, one part Berliner Blau and 20 (twenty) parts white.

Pale apple-green is made from two parts Gummigutti, one part Berliner Blau and 56 parts white.

Gummigutti is this:

Berliner Blau is thiss one:


jeffreyw320 Jan 2018 7:20 a.m. PST

Thanks Oliver! That explains the variation--I had no idea there were three different versions…

Dave Jackson Supporting Member of TMP20 Jan 2018 8:01 a.m. PST

I believe there are a couple of lines of craft paints that differentiate these (well….they don't have "russian green"!….but they do have an "Apple green").

Terry3720 Jan 2018 9:46 a.m. PST

For my Tsar Paul I Russians I painted the gun carriages in a base coat of a hobby store Apple Barrel (brand) color called Palm Leaf Green, which I matched using the Methuen method to the Apple green in the Viskovatov plates. I also found another hobby store paint called Folk Art Light Avocado was also a good match for a base color based on his works. Then I highlighted with a slightly yellowed version of the same base color using a wet dry brush method. This gave me a very close match.

I had originally painted the carriages using a hooby store color called Creamcoat Apple Green, but instantly knew it was way too light and way too yellow. In fact it matches spot on to one of the facing colors in the Viskovatov plates of a drummer of the Viborg Musketeer Regiment described in the text as having yellow facings. The yellow used by the Russians, at least according to the plates in his works do tend toward a yellow-ish green shade, but not usually with this much green.

The sample in he shade of the schematic above seems good to me.


von Winterfeldt20 Jan 2018 11:35 p.m. PST

this tableau is of 1820 – colours may have changed

this is of 1792 – beware the numbers given are not the regimental numbers but are related to the text of the book

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jeffreyw321 Jan 2018 7:43 a.m. PST

grin Yes, we're spoiled for choice with everything you've posted von Winterfeldt--thanks!

I was looking for period resources like this b/c it's difficult to trust the colorists for the Viskovatov prints as they're quite a bit later.

Le Breton Inactive Member21 Jan 2018 4:13 p.m. PST

Russian language does not have a color "apple green".

The artillery was a mid-green with a yellow tone as opposed to a blue tone, when fresh. It was made with some copper pigment that oxidized. When older, it looked grayer, lighter, maybe yellower, and very flat/matte (until someone put a coat of linseed oil or similar on it.)

von Winterfeldt22 Jan 2018 3:09 a.m. PST

The Prussians – when encountering Russian troops in 1805 – 1807 describe the colour of the woodwork of their artillery as light green

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