Zenburn is a low-contrast color scheme for Vim. Fork of https://github.com/jnurmine/Zenburn
6e207376 — Alessio Chiapperini 7 months ago
Add terminal status line colors
1d45ce0c — Alessio Chiapperini 7 months ago
Fix indentation
a087fd41 — Alessio Chiapperini 7 months ago
Change statusline colors


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You can also use your local clone with git send-email.


Zenburn is a low-contrast color scheme for Vim. It’s easy for your eyes and designed to keep you in the zone for long programming sessions.

Zenburn has been ported to many different editors and environments. For more information and list of derivatives, visit http://kippura.org/zenburnpage


  • dayglo vomit
  • black, red, blue and green on screaming white background
  • headache
  • watery, squinting eyes
  • the "I wanna run away" feeling


  • alien fruit salad
  • harmonious colors help with concentration
  • improved focus
  • stay longer in the zone
  • more productivity
  • looks good
  • 256-color terminal mode
  • GVim mode
  • customizeable
  • etc.


To use Zenburn in GVim, simply copy the file to colors/ subdirectory under your Vim configuration folder (e.g. ~/.vim/colors or C:\vim\colors).

To use Zenburn in Vim, you must enable the 256-color mode for Vim. This can be done with e.g. export TERM=xterm-256color. You might also need to add set t_Co=256 into your .vimrc file, before loading the colorscheme. Note, that due to limitations of the 256-color mode the color scheme is not exactly like it appears in GVim, but very close nevertheless.

To load Zenburn in Vim/GVim:

:colors zenburn

To automatically load the colors upon startup of Vim, add this to .vimrc:

colors zenburn


GNU GPL, http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl.html


Captain Obvious says: make a symlink from ~/.vim/colors/zenburn.vim which points to the real zenburn.vim. This way you don't need to copy files around and making the Vimball is easy!


To make a Vimball, open zb-vimball.txt and then :MkVimball zenburn.vba


  • Creators of "BlackDust", "Camo" and "Desert" themes. I used those to figure out how the Vim color schemes work in practise.
  • All contributors - see zenburn.vim for a list.
  • All people who made derivatives and ports.
  • All zenburners worldwide!


Thank you for enjoying “Just some alien fruit salad to keep you in the zone”!

Cheers, slinky at iki dot fi