Ochre (English) (/ˈoʊkər/ OH-kər; from Ancient Greek: ὤχρα, from ὠχρός, ōkhrós, pale) or ocher (American English)[1] is a natural clay earth pigment which is a mixture of ferric oxide and varying amounts of clay and sand.[2] It ranges in colour from yellow to deep orange or brown. It is also the name of the colours produced by this pigment, especially a light brownish-yellow.[3][4] A variant of ochre containing a large amount of hematite, or dehydrated iron oxide, has a reddish tint known as "red ochre" (or, in some dialects, ruddle).

The word ochre also describes clays colored with iron oxide derived during the extraction of tin and copper.[5]

    Color coordinates
Hex triplet#CC7722
sRGBB  (rgb)(204, 119, 34)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k)(0, 42, 83, 20)
HSV       (h, s, v)(30°, 83%, 80%)
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)
Hellocker- Pigment
Ochre- pigment

Earth pigments

Ochre is a family of earth pigments, which includes yellow ochre, red ochre, purple ochre, sienna, and umber. The major ingredient of all the ochres is iron(III) oxide-hydroxide, known as limonite, which gives them a yellow colour.

Goldocker- Pigment
Yellow ochre (Goldochre)- pigment
  • Yellow ochre, FeO(OH)·nH
    , is a hydrated iron hydroxide (limonite) also called gold ochre.
  • Red ochre, Fe
    , takes its reddish colour from the mineral hematite, which is an anhydrous iron oxide.
  • Purple ochre is identical to red ochre chemically but of a different hue caused by different light diffraction properties associated with a greater average particle size.
  • Brown ochre, also FeO(OH), (goethite), is a partly hydrated iron oxide.
  • Sienna contains both limonite and a small amount of manganese oxide (less than five percent), which makes it darker than ochre.
  • Umber pigments contain a larger proportion of manganese (five to twenty percent), which makes them a dark brown.[6]

When natural sienna and umber pigments are heated, they are dehydrated and some of the limonite is transformed into hematite, giving them more reddish colours, called burnt sienna and burnt umber. Ochres are non-toxic and can be used to make an oil paint that dries quickly and covers surfaces thoroughly. Modern ochre pigments often are made using synthetic iron oxide. Pigments which use natural ochre pigments indicate it with the name PY-43 (Pigment yellow 43) on the label, following the Colour Index International system.


Limonite, a mineraloid containing iron hydroxide, is the main ingredient of all the ochre pigments.


Hematite is a more reddish variety of iron oxide, and is the main ingredient of red ochre. When limonite is roasted, it turns partially to the more reddish hematite and becomes red ochre or burnt sienna.

Sentier des ocres 1

The clay hills of Roussillon, Vaucluse, in Provence have been an important source of ochre pigment since the 18th century.

Historical use in art and culture

Prehistory and early history

The use of ochre is particularly intensive: it is not unusual to find a layer of the cave floor impregnated with a purplish red to a depth of eight inches. The size of these ochre deposits raises a problem not yet solved. The colouring is so intense that practically all the loose ground seems to consist of ochre. One can imagine that the Aurignacians regularly painted their bodies red, dyed their animal skins, coated their weapons, and sprinkled the ground of their dwellings, and that a paste of ochre was used for decorative purposes in every phase of their domestic life. We must assume no less, if we are to account for the veritable mines of ochre on which some of them lived...

— Leroi-Gourhan, A. 1968. The Art of Prehistoric Man in Western Europe. London: Thames & Hudson, p. 40.

Iron oxide is one of the most common minerals found on earth, and there is much evidence that yellow and red ochre pigment was used in prehistoric and ancient times by many different civilizations on different continents. Pieces of ochre engraved with abstract designs have been found at the site of the Blombos Cave in South Africa, dated to around 75,000 years ago.[7]

The practice of ochre painting was prevalent in ancient Australia. Pleistocene burials with red ochre date as early as 40,000 BP and ochre played a role in expressing symbolic ideologies of the earliest arrivals to the continent.[8]

In Wales, the paleolithic burial called the Red Lady of Paviland from its coating of red ochre has been dated to around 33,000 years before present. Paintings of animals made with red and yellow ochre pigments have been found in paleolithic sites at Pech Merle in France (ca. 25,000 years old), and the cave of Altamira in Spain (ca. 16,500–15,000 BC). The cave of Lascaux has an image of a horse coloured with yellow ochre estimated to be 17,300 years old.

According to some scholars, Neolithic burials used red ochre pigments symbolically, either to represent a return to the earth or possibly as a form of ritual rebirth, in which the colour symbolises blood and the Great Goddess.[9]

In Ancient Egypt, yellow was associated with gold, which was considered to be eternal and indestructible. The skin and bones of the gods were believed to be made of gold. The Egyptians used yellow ochre extensively in tomb painting, though occasionally they used orpiment, which made a brilliant colour, but was highly toxic, since it was made with arsenic. In tomb paintings, men were always shown with brown faces, women with yellow ochre or gold faces.[10]

Red ochre in Ancient Egypt was used as a rouge, or lip gloss for women.[11] Ochre-coloured lines were also discovered on the Unfinished Obelisk at the northern region of the Aswan Stone Quarry, marking work sites. Ochre clays were also used medicinally in Ancient Egypt: such use is described in the Ebers Papyrus from Egypt, dating to about 1550 BC.

Ochre was the most commonly used pigment for painting walls in the ancient Mediterranean world. In Ancient Greece, red ochre was called μίλτος, míltos (hence Miltiades, red-haired or ruddy). In Athens when Assembly was called, a contingent of public slaves would sweep the open space of the Agora with ropes dipped in miltos: those citizens that loitered there instead of moving to the Assembly area would risk having their clothes stained with the paint. This prevented them from wearing these clothes in public again, as failure to attend the Assembly incurred a fine. It was also known as "raddle", "reddle" or "ruddle"[12] and was used to mark sheep and can also be used as a waxy waterproof coating on structures. The reddle was sold as a ready-made mixture to farmers and herders by travelling workers called reddlemen.[13] A reddleman named Diggory Venn was prominently described in Thomas Hardy's 1878 novel entitled The Return of the Native.

In classical antiquity, the finest red ochre came from a Greek colony on the Black Sea where the modern city of Sinop in Turkey is located. It was carefully regulated, expensive and marked by a special seal, and this colour was called sealed Sinope. Later the Latin and Italian name sinopia was given to wide range of dark red ochre pigments.[14] The Romans used yellow ochre in their paintings to represent gold and skin tones, and as a background colour. It is found frequently in the murals of Pompeii.

The Ancient Picts were said to paint themselves "Iron Red" according to the Gothic historian Jordanes. Frequent references in Irish myth to "red men" (Gaelic: Fer Dearg) make it likely that such a practice was common to the Celts of the British Isles, bog iron being particularly abundant in the midlands of Ireland.


Image of a horse colored with yellow ochre (17,300 BC) from Lascaux cave, France.

Pech Merle main

Image of a human hand created with red ochre in Pech Merle cave, France (Gravettian era, 25,000 BC).


Image of a bison from the cave of Altamira in Spain, painted with red ochre between 16,500 and 15,000 BC.

Tomb of Nakht

Paintings in the Tomb of Nakht in ancient Egypt (15th century BC).

Harfenspielerin Römisches Fresko

Yellow ochre was often used in wall paintings in Ancient Roman villas and towns.


Multicolored ochre rocks used in Aboriginal ceremony and artwork. Ochre Pits, Namatjira Drive, Northern Territory

Ochre has been used for millennia by Aboriginal Australians for body decoration, sun protection,[15] mortuary practices, cave painting, bark painting and other artwork, and the preservation of animal skins, among other uses. At Lake Mungo, in Western New South Wales, burial sites have been excavated and burial materials, including ochre-painted bones, have been dated to the arrival of people in Australia;[16] "Mungo Man" (LM3) was buried sprinkled with red ochre at dates confidently estimated as at least 30,000 years B.P. and possibly as old as 60,000 years old.[17] Ochre pigments are plentiful across Australia, especially the Western Desert, Kimberley and Arnhem Land regions, and occur in many archaeological sites.[18] The National Museum of Australia has a large collection of samples of ochre from many sites across Australia.[19]

New Zealand

The Māori people of New Zealand were found to be making extensive use of mineral ochre mixed with fish oil.[20] Ochre was the predominant colouring agent used by Maori, and was used to paint their large waka taua (war canoe). Ochre prevented the drying out of the wood in canoes and the carvings of meeting houses; later missionaries estimated that it would last for 30 years. It was also roughly smeared over the face, especially by women, to keep off insects. Solid chunks of ochre were ground on a flat but rough surfaced rock to produce the powder.

North America

In Newfoundland[21] its use is most often associated with the Beothuk, whose use of red ochre led them to be referred to as "Red Indians" by the first Europeans to Newfoundland.[22] It was also used by the Maritime Archaic as evidenced by its discovery in the graves of over 100 individuals during an archaeological excavation at Port au Choix. Its use was widespread at times in the Eastern Woodlands cultural area of Canada and the US; the Red Ocher people complex refers to a specific archaeological period in the Woodlands ca. 1000-400 BC. California Native Americans such as the Tongva and Chumash were also known to use red ochre as body paint.[23]

In Newfoundland, red ochre was the pigment of choice for use in vernacular outbuildings and work buildings associated with the cod fishery. Deposits of ochre are found throughout Newfoundland, notably near Fortune Harbour and at Ochre Pit Cove. While earliest settlers may have used locally collected ochre, people were later able to purchase pre-ground ochre through local merchants, largely imported from England.

The dry ingredient, ochre, was mixed with some type of liquid raw material to create a rough paint. The liquid material was usually seal oil or cod liver oil in Newfoundland and Labrador, while Scandinavian recipes sometimes called for linseed oil. Red ochre paint was sometimes prepared months in advance and allowed to sit, and the smell of ochre paint being prepared is still remembered by many today.

Variations in local recipes, shades of ore, and type of oil used resulted in regional variations in colour. Because of this, it is difficult to pinpoint an exact shade or hue of red that would be considered the traditional "fishing stage red". Oral tradition in the Bonavista Bay area maintains that seal oil mixed with the ochre gave the sails a purer red colour, while cod liver oil would give a "foxy" colour, browner in hue.


Red ochre has been used as a colouring agent in Africa for over 200,000 years.[24] Women of the Himba ethnic group in Namibia use a mix of ochre and animal fat for body decoration, to achieve a reddish skin colour. The ochre mixture is also applied to their hair after braiding.[25] Men and women of the Maasai people in Kenya and Tanzania have also used ochre in the same way.


During the Renaissance, yellow and red ochre pigments were widely used in painting panels and frescoes. The colours vary greatly from region to region, depending upon whether the local clay was richer in yellowish limonite or reddish hematite. The red earth from Pozzuoli near Naples was a salmon pink, while the pigment from Tuscany contained manganese, making it a darker reddish brown called terra di siena, or sienna earth.[26]

The 15th-century painter Cennino Cennini described the uses of ochre pigments in his famous treatise on painting.

This pigment is found in the earth of mountains, where particular seams like sulphur are found. And there, where these seams are, sinopia, green earth and other types of pigment are found...And the abovementioned pigments running through this landscape looked as a scar on the face of a man or of a woman looks...I went in behind with my little knife, prospecting at the scar of this pigment; and in this way, I promise you, I never sampled a more lovely and perfect ochre pigment...And know that this ochre is a common pigment, particularly when working in fresco; that with other mixtures that, as i will explain to you, it is used for flesh colours, for drapery, for coloured mountains and buildings and hair and in general for many things.[27]

In early modern Malta, red ochre paint was commonly used on public buildings.[28]

Modern history

The industrial process for making ochre pigment was developed by the French scientist Jean-Étienne Astier in the 1780s. He was from Roussillon in the Vaucluse department of Provence, and he was fascinated by the cliffs of red and yellow clay in the region. He invented a process to make the pigment on a large scale. First the clay was extracted from open pits or mines. The raw clay contained about 80 to 90 percent sand and 10 to 20 percent ochre. Then he washed the clay to separate the grains of sand from the particles of ochre. The remaining mixture was then decanted in large basins, to further separate the ochre from the sand. The water was then drained, and the ochre was dried, cut into bricks, crushed, sifted, and then classified by colour and quality. The best quality was reserved for artists' pigments.[6]

In Britain, ochre was mined at Brixham England. It became an important product for the British fishing industry, where it was combined with oil and used to coat sails to protect them from seawater, giving them a reddish colour. The ochre was boiled in great caldrons, together with tar, tallow and oak bark, the last ingredient giving the name of barking yards to the places where the hot mixture was painted on to the sails, which were then hung up to dry. In 1894, a theft case provided insights into the use of the pigment as a food adulterant in sausage roll production whereby the accused apprentice was taught to soak brown bread in red ochre, salt, and pepper to give the appearance of beef sausage for the filling.[29]

As noted above, the industrial process for making ochre pigment was developed by the French scientist Jean-Étienne Astier in the 1780s, using the ochre mines Roussillon in the Vaucluse department of Provence, in France. Thanks to the process invented by Astier and refined by his successors, ochre pigments from Roussillon were exported across Europe and around the world. It was not only used for artists paints and house paints; it also became an important ingredient for the early rubber industry.

Ochre from Roussillon was an important French export until the mid-20th century, when major markets were lost due to the Russian Revolution and the Spanish Civil War. Ochre also began to face growing competition from newly synthetic pigment industry. The mines in Roussillon closed, though the production of natural ochre pigments continued at mines in Cyprus and other sites.

See also

Notes and citations

  1. ^ See American and British English spelling differences#-re, -er)
  2. ^ ocher. American Heritage Dictionary. 1969.
  3. ^ Shorter Oxford English Dictionary (2002), Oxford University Press.
  4. ^ The Random House College Dictionary, Revised Edition, (1980). "Any of a class of natural earths, mixtures of hydrated oxides of iron and various earthy materials, ranging in colour from pale yellow to orange and red, and used as pigments. A colour ranging from pale yellow to reddish-yellow."
  5. ^ Ochre. Collier's New Encyclopedia. 1921.
  6. ^ a b Roelofs, Isabelle (2012). La couleur expliquée aux artistes. Groupe Eyrolles. ISBN 978-2-212-134865. p. 30
  7. ^ In African Cave, Signs of an Ancient Paint Factory
  8. ^ Hiscock, Archaeology of Ancient Australia p. 125
  9. ^ Giulia Battiti Sorlini, "The Megalithic Temples of Malta", Por Anthony Bonanno, Archaeology and fertility cult in the ancient Mediterranean: papers presented at the First International Conference on Archaeology of the Ancient Mediterranean, University of Malta, 2–5 September 1985, p.145.
  10. ^ http://www.webexhibits.org/pigments/intro/antiquity.html%7CWebexhibits -Pigments through the ages - antiquity
  11. ^ Hamilton R. (2007). Ancient Egypt: The Kingdom of the Pharaohs. Parragon Inc. p. 62.
  12. ^ Mercer, Henry C. (2000). Ancient carpenters' tools illustrated and explained, together with the implements of the lumberman, joiner, and cabinet-maker in use in the eighteenth century (Dover ed.). Mineola, N.Y.: Dover Publications. p. 308. ISBN 978-0486320212.
  13. ^ Morris, David (2013). Shepherds' Huts & Living Vans. Amberley Publishing Limited. ISBN 978-1445621418. Retrieved 24 November 2014.
  14. ^ Daniel Thompson, The Materials and Techniques of Medieval Painting, p. 98
  15. ^ Rurenga, Declan (2017-08-09). "Wiradjuri artist's painting depicts journey of healing at hospital". Central Western Daily. Retrieved 2018-05-13.
  16. ^ "Lake Mungo 3". Personal.une.edu.au. Archived from the original on 2014-01-26. Retrieved 2012-12-27.
  17. ^ Bowler JM, Johnston H, Olley JM, Prescott JR, Roberts RG, Shawcross W, Spooner NA (2003). "New ages for human occupation and climatic change at Lake Mungo, Australia". Nature. 421 (6295): 837–40. doi:10.1038/nature01383. PMID 12594511.
  18. ^ "Aboriginal Art Online, Traditional painting methods". Aboriginalartonline.com. Retrieved 2012-12-27.
  19. ^ "Ochre samples, National Museum of Australia". Nma.gov.au. Retrieved 2012-12-27.
  20. ^ Dieffenbach cited in Wells, B., 1878. The history of Taranaki. Edmondson and Avery, New Plymouth.
  21. ^ "Red ochre in Newfoundland". Fisheriesheritage.ca. 2006-09-24. Retrieved 2012-12-27.
  22. ^ Ingeborg Marshall, The Beothuk of Newfoundland: A Vanished People, Breakwater Books, 1989, p.5.
  23. ^ The Megalithic Portal and Megalith Map. "C. Michael Hogan, Los Osos Back Bay, Megalithic Portal, editor A. Burnham (2008)". Megalithic.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-12-27.
  24. ^ Mcbrearty, Sally; Brooks, Alison S. (2000-11-01). "The revolution that wasn't: a new interpretation of the origin of modern human behavior". Journal of Human Evolution. 39 (5): 453–563. doi:10.1006/jhev.2000.0435. PMID 11102266.
  25. ^ Crandall, David P. (2000). The Place of Stunted Ironwood Trees. New York: Continuum International Publishing Group Inc. p. 48
  26. ^ Daniel V. Thompson, The Materials and Techniques of Medieval Painting, p. 99
  27. ^ Lara Broecke, Cennino Cennini's Il Libro dell'Arte: a New English Translation and Commentary with Italian transcription, Archetype 2015, p. 71
  28. ^ "Auberge D'Aragon" (PDF). National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Islands. 28 December 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 March 2016.
  29. ^ The Times, Police, 5 February 1894; pg. 14


  • Helwig, K. Iron Oxide Pigments, in Artists’ Pigments, Berrie, B.H., Ed., National Gallery of Art Washington, 2007, pp. 38–109.
  • Isabelle Roelofs and Fabien Petillion, La couleur expliquée aux artistes, Editions Eyrolles, (2012), ISBN 978-2-212-13486-5.
  • Philip Ball, Histoire vivante des couleurs (2001), Hazan Publishers, Paris, ISBN 978-2-754105-033.
  • Fuller, Carl; "Natural Colored Iron Oxide Pigments", pp. 281–6. In: Pigment Handbook, 2nd Edition. Lewis, P. (ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1988.
  • Thomas, Anne Wall. Colors From the Earth, New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1980.
  • Wreschner, Ernst E. (October 1980) "Red Ochre and Human Evolution: A Case for Discussion." Current Anthropology 21:631–644. (Comments by various authors included.)
  • Daniel V. Thompson (1956), The Materials and Techniques of Medieval Painting, Dover Publications, New York. ISBN 0-486-20327-1.
  • Lara Broecke, Cennino Cennini's Il Libro dell'Arte: a New English Translation and Commentary with Italian Transcription, Archetype, London, 2015, ISBN 978-1-909492-28-8.
  • David Bomford and Ashoka Roy (2009), A Closer Look- Colour, The National Gallery, London, ISBN 978-1-85709-442-8.

External links

Aveline's Hole

Aveline's Hole is a cave at Burrington Combe in the limestone of the Mendip Hills, in Somerset, England.

The earliest scientifically dated cemetery in Britain, 10,200 and 10,400 years old, was found at Aveline's Hole. Much of the collection has been lost, and although more than fifty individuals are represented, there are only two complete skeletons. Perforated animal teeth, red ochre and seven pieces of fossil ammonite, suggest that some of the bodies were adorned.A series of inscribed crosses found on the wall of the Aveline's Hole cave are believed to date from the early Mesolithic period just after the Ice Age. The pattern is said to be comparable with others known from Northern France, Germany and Denmark. A gate has been installed in the cave to protect the engraving, after consultations between English Heritage and other interested parties, including the landowner and English Nature.

The cave was rediscovered in 1797 by two men digging for a rabbit. The cave was excavated and the entrance enlarged in 1860 by William Boyd Dawkins who named it after his mentor William Talbot Aveline.Access to the cave is controlled by the University of Bristol Spelæological Society and is restricted during the bat hibernation season.

Banwell Ochre Caves

Banwell Ochre Caves (grid reference ST407593) are a 12.46-hectare geological Site of Special Scientific Interest near the village of Banwell, North Somerset, notified in 1983.

There are five caves in total which contain the most extensive and accessible yellow ochre workings in the Mendip Hills. A wide variety of ochre types and iron hydroxides (limonites) can be examined in situ, and the evidence of their accumulation as residual ore-bodies associated with Ice Age (Pleistocene) sediments is clearly visible. The caves are also a nesting site for the Horseshoe bat a protected species.The caves were first exploited for ochre mining in the 1930s and worked until 1948.Cave one is 62 metres (203 ft) long, Cave two 154 metres (505 ft), cave three 92 metres (302 ft) cave four 62 metres (203 ft) and cave five 31 metres (102 ft) long. A small additional cave is choked with rocks at a depth of 4 metres (13 ft).

Blombos Cave

Blombos Cave is an archaeological site located in Blomboschfontein Nature Reserve, about 300 km east of Cape Town on the Southern Cape coastline, South Africa. The cave contains Middle Stone Age (MSA) deposits currently dated at between c. 100,000 and 70,000 years Before Present (BP), and a Late Stone Age sequence dated at between 2000 and 300 years BP. The cave site was first excavated in 1991 and field work has been conducted there on a regular basis since 1997, and is ongoing.The excavations at Blombos Cave have yielded important new information on the behavioural evolution of anatomically modern humans. The archaeological record from this cave site has been central in the ongoing debate on the cognitive and cultural origin of early humans and to the current understanding of when and where key behavioural innovations emerged among Homo sapiens in southern Africa during the Late Pleistocene. Archaeological material and faunal remains recovered from the Middle Stone Age phase in Blombos Cave – dated to ca. 100,000–70,000 years BP – are considered to represent greater ecological niche adaptation, a more diverse set of subsistence and procurements strategies, adoption of multi-step technology and manufacture of composite tools, stylistic elaboration, increased economic and social organisation and occurrence of symbolically mediated behaviour.

The most informative archaeological material from Blombos Cave includes engraved ochre, engraved bone ochre processing kits, marine shell beads, refined bone and stone tools and a broad range of terrestrial and marine faunal remains, including shellfish, birds, tortoise and ostrich egg shell and mammals of various sizes. These findings, together with subsequent re-analysis and excavation of other Middle Stone Age sites in southern Africa, have resulted in a paradigm shift with regard to the understanding of the timing and location of the development of modern human behaviour.

On 29 May 2015 Heritage Western Cape formally protected the site as a provincial heritage site.Cross-hatching done in ochre on a stone fragment found at Blombos Cave is believed to be the earliest known drawing done by a human in the world.

Compton Martin Ochre Mine

Compton Martin Ochre Mine (grid reference ST543566) is a 0.85 hectare geological and biological Site of Special Scientific Interest located on the north side of the Mendip Hills, immediately south west of Compton Martin village, Somerset, notified in 1988.

Damjili Cave

Damjili (Azerbaijani: Damcılı mağarası) – is a half-circular shaped cave site (6400-6000 BC) in Azerbaijan, where evidence of prehistoric human presence during the Paleolithic and Mesolithic was discovered.Various stone tools, arrowheads, flint knives, remains of hearth and fossilized bones of animals have been found in the cave.Traces of ochre were found in a grotto of the cave, lending credence to the idea, that the occupants had a desire to deal with symbolism and aesthetics. The sediment layers, in which the ochre was found are mixed with more tardy ones which suggests that the use ochre dates back to the Mousterian culture

Division No. 1, Subdivision G, Newfoundland and Labrador

Division No. 1, Subdivision G is an unorganized subdivision on the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. It is in Division 1 and contains the unincorporated communities of Baccalieu Island, Besom Cove, Bradley's Cove, Burnt Point, Caplin Cove, Daniel's Cove, Grates Cove, Gull Island, Job's Cove, Kingston, Long Beach, Lower Island Cove, Low Point, Northern Bay, Ochre Pit Cove, Red Head Cove, Riverhead, Smooth Cove and Western Bay.

Maritime Archaic

The Maritime Archaic is a North American cultural complex of the Late Archaic along the coast of Newfoundland, the Canadian Maritimes and northern New England. The Maritime Archaic began in approximately 7000 BC and lasted into the 18th century. The culture consisted of sea-mammal hunters in the subarctic who used wooden boats. Maritime Archaic sites have been found as far south as Maine and as far north as Labrador. Their settlements included longhouses, and boat-topped temporary or seasonal houses. They engaged in long-distance trade, as shown by white chert from northern Labrador being found as far south as Maine.

The Maritime Archaic is one cultural complex among several of the Archaic stage for North American peoples. It had been long postulated that the most likely direct descendants of the Maritime Archaic culture were the Beothuk of Newfoundland. The latter, through susceptibility to Eurasian diseases, conflict with neighbouring native groups, and malnourishment after European persecution pushed them inland and away from the fish and marine mammals that had been a staple of their diet, succumbed to erosion of their population base, small to begin with, and disappeared in the 19th century as a distinct tribeArchaeogenetic research in 2017 established, however, that the Maritime Archaic people had nothing in common with the Inuit, nor with Beothuk Indians, who later inhabited the same area after the climatic conditions changed. A study published in Current Biology compared the mitochondrial DNA of 74 individuals, 19 Beothuk, 53 Maritime Archaic, and two Paleo-Eskimo, and found that these populations were not at all related.

Another significant Maritime Archaic find are the "Red Ochre Culture" burials throughout the Northeast United States (their attribution to MA is not generally accepted). They may represent the last phases of the Maritime Archaic, as they contain significant finds of white chert artifacts common to other Maritime Archaic sites. This issue is currently debated among scholars.

If the hypothesis of the Red Ochre as the last state of the Maritime Archaic period is accepted, then the latter is best known from a mortuary site in Newfoundland at Port au Choix. This site revealed over 100 graves embellished with red ochre. The graves contained many elaborate artifacts, including barbed bone points; daggers of ivory, antler, or bone; toggling harpoons; shell-beaded clothing; and a burial suit made from more than 200 skins of the now-extinct great auk. These finds indicated a stratified society with trade and some level of social complexity (Tuck, 1976).

Ochre Coloured Pottery culture

The Ochre Coloured Pottery culture (OCP) is a 2nd millennium BC Bronze Age culture of the Indo-Gangetic Plain, extending from eastern Punjab to northeastern Rajasthan and western Uttar Pradesh. It is considered a candidate for association with the early Indo-Aryan or Vedic culture.

The pottery had a red slip but gave off an ochre color on the fingers of archaeologists who excavated it, hence the name. It was sometimes decorated with black painted bands and incised patterns. It is often found in association with copper hoards, which are assemblages of copper weapons and other artifacts such as anthropomorphic figures. OCP culture was rural and agricultural, characterized by cultivation of rice, barley, and legumes, and domestication of cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, horses, and dogs. Most sites were small villages in size, but densely distributed. Houses were typically made of wattle-and-daub. Other artifacts include animal and human figurines, and ornaments made of copper and terracotta.At some archaeological sites in the western part of its distribution, the OCP occurs alongside the Late Harappan phase of the Indus Valley Civilization, but in OCP sites farther east, there is no such direct link with the Harappan culture. The OCP marked the last stage of the North Indian Bronze Age and was succeeded by the Iron Age black and red ware culture and the Painted Grey Ware culture.

Orchard oriole

The orchard oriole (Icterus spurius) is the smallest species of icterid. The subspecies of the Caribbean coast of Mexico, I. s. fuertesi, is sometimes considered a separate species, the ochre oriole or Fuertes's oriole.

Pisaster ochraceus

Pisaster ochraceus, generally known as the purple sea star, ochre sea star, or ochre starfish, is a common starfish found among the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Identified as a keystone species, P. ochraceus is considered an important indicator for the health of the intertidal zone.

Qafzeh cave

Qafzeh cave (Hebrew: מערת קפזה‎, romanized: Me'arat Qafzeh) means “precipice”, also known as Kedumim cave (Hebrew: מערת קדומים‎, romanized: Me'arat Kedumim) or Ha'kfitza cave (Hebrew: מערת הקפיצה‎, romanized: Me'arat Hakfitzah), is a prehistoric archaeological site located at the bottom of Mount Precipice (Hebrew: הר קדומים, "Har Kedumim"), in the Yizrael Valley of the Lower Galilee, south of Nazareth. Important remains of prehistoric people were discovered on the site - some of the oldest examples in the world, outside of Africa, of virtually anatomically modern human beings. These were discovered on the ledge just outside the cave, where 18 layers from the Middle Paleolithic era were identified. The interior of the cave contains layers ranging from the Neolithic era to the Bronze age.Excavations of the site began in 1932, by Moshe Stekelis and René Victor Neuville, but were interrupted due to a collapse. In 1936, during the Arab rebellion in Palestine, the British blew up the cave because it was being used as a hideout by gangs associated with the rebels. Excavations were renewed in 1965, by Bernard Vandermeersch, Ofer Bar-Yosef, then continued, intermittently, until 1979.Among the finds on the site are stoves, stone tools belonging to the Mousterian culture, and also human and animal bones, which attest to the fact that the cave had been used both for residence and as a burial site. The remains of 15 human skeletons were discovered on site, in a Mousterian archaeological context. Seven of them are skeletons of adults and the rest - of children. The high proportion of children skeletons is unique among Middle Palaeolithic sites, and it led researchers to look for signs of trauma or disease that might have led to their premature deaths. One child, Qafzeh 12, of around 3 years of age, by modern reference standards, had abnormalities indicating hydrocephalus. Five of these skeletons were found buried in an orderly fashion in the cave's floor, of which 2 were found with deer horns lying in their hands. The site was dated to circa 92,000 BP, using Thermoluminescence.Human remains founded in the cave were preserved at the Institut de paléontologie humaine (IPH) de Paris and the largest part of Neville’s lithic series was preserved at the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem. One such burial is of a 10 year old boy from the earliest of the Middle Paleolithic layers, who was buried in a rectangular grave carved out of the bedrock, with his arms folded alongside his body and his hands placed on either side of his neck. Deer horns were laid on his hands, probably constituting one of the offerings put in the grave. The boy's skull bears signs of a head trauma that had probably been the cause of death.According to K. Kris Hirst, bones and bone fragments found in the cave belong to at least 27 people. Remains of Qafzeh 9 and 10 are completely pristine.An additional important find was the remains of ochre that were found on human bones, and, also, 71 pieces of ochre that were associated with burial practices, which indicates that ceremonial funerary rites that included symbolic acts which held special meaning had already been common around 100,000 years ago. Ochre was used for body dyeing and ornamentation. It was also used during the burial of a brain damaged child that was found in the cave. Red, black and yellow ochre-painted seashells were found around the cave.

Red Ocher people

The Red Ocher people were an indigenous people of North America. A series of archaeological sites located in the Upper Great Lakes, the Greater Illinois River Valley, and the Ohio River Valley in the American Midwest have been discovered to be a Red Ocher burial complex, dating from 1000 BC to 400 BC, the Terminal Archaic – Early Woodland period. Characterized as shallow burials located in sandy ridges along river valleys, covered in red ochre or hydrated iron oxide (FeH3O), they contain diagnostic artifacts that include caches of flint points, turkey-tails, and various forms of worked copper. Turkey-tails are large flint blades of a distinct type. It is believed that Red Ocher people spoke an ancestral form of the Algonquian languages.

Red ochre has a long history of use in North America; as early as the Folsom tradition during the Paleo-Indian period, certain localities in New Mexico and Wyoming were being mined for the substance. The people today known as Red Ocher were first identified by the University of Chicago in 1937. During the late 1950s and early 1960s, the Red Ocher Culture was a topic of great interest among archaeologists who were trying to better define the burial culture through various methods of research. Since then intermittent archaeological works have been published dealing with specific sub-topics within the burial culture and supported by more reliable AMS carbon dates. Nevertheless, many important archaeological questions regarding the Red Ocher burial manifestation and cultural phenomenon are still without answers.

Roussillon, Vaucluse

Roussillon is a commune in the Vaucluse department of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region in Southeastern France. In 2016, it had a population of 1,317. Roussillon lies within the borders of the Natural Regional Park of Luberon. In the French natural regional parks system, new economic activities may be developed only if they are sustainable.It is noted for its large ochre deposits found in the clay surrounding the village. Ochres are pigments ranging from yellow and orange to red. One of the former ochre quarries can be visited via the "Sentier des Ocres" (Ochre Path), a walk of either 30 or 60 minutes through the old workings.

Rural Municipality of Ochre River

The Rural Municipality of Ochre River is a former rural municipality (RM) in the Canadian province of Manitoba. It was originally incorporated as a rural municipality on November 18, 1901. It ceased on January 1, 2015 as a result of its provincially mandated amalgamation with the RM of Lawrence to form the Rural Municipality of Lakeshore.The former RM is located south of Dauphin Lake and takes its name from the river and the community of Ochre River.

Shute Shelve Cavern

Shute Shelve Cavern is a natural cave system located in Shute Shelve Hill, Somerset, England, above Axbridge in the Mendip Hills not far from Cheddar.

The phreatic cave contains fossils of speleothems over 350,000 years old.It was mined for its yellow ochre which was used as a dye in paint making, until the 1920s, which gave it its alternative name of Axbridge Ochre Mine.

Access is controlled by the Axbridge Caving Group via a locked gate and completely closed during the bats' roosting season.

Chamber 1 has taped areas shows scallops to the right and miners supports and a large geode up to the left. Chamber 2 is a large rift with taped off areas for conservation. Further areas are known as Box Tunnel and Elm Street.

Carcass Cave dig is virtually feet away which used a monorail system, ladders and platforms.

Stop codon

In the genetic code, a stop codon (or termination codon) is a nucleotide triplet within messenger RNA that signals a termination of translation into proteins. Proteins are based on polypeptides, which are unique sequences of amino acids. Most codons in messenger RNA (from DNA) correspond to the addition of an amino acid to a growing polypeptide chain, which may ultimately become a protein. Stop codons signal the termination of this process by binding release factors, which cause the ribosomal subunits to disassociate, releasing the amino acid chain. While start codons need nearby sequences or initiation factors to start translation, a stop codon alone is sufficient to initiate termination.

Tour Down Under

The Tour Down Under is a cycling race in and around Adelaide, South Australia, and is the opening event of the UCI World Tour and features all 17 UCI WorldTeams. It also runs as a UCI Women's 2.1 event and features a one-day circuit race as a 'prelude' to the main race.

The race was established in 1999 with the support of then Premier of South Australia John Olsen as part of an effort to fill the gap in the state's sporting calendar left by the move of the Australian Grand Prix from Adelaide to Melbourne, Victoria. Since then, the event has been organised by South Australia's Major Event's arm Events South Australia. It has seen rapid growth in its first two decades, having notably become the first race to be granted UCI UCI ProTour status (now UCI WorldTour) in 2008, and becoming the first event of the UCI World Ranking calendar in 2009.

The race has always been held in the middle of the Australian summer season, and features a series of stages incorporating hills and flat sections over a six-day period.

Like other UCI WorldTour races, the event attracts all of the top UCI teams, as well as features a national representative team made up of riders without full-time professional contracts. Teams traditionally consist of six riders.

The rider with the lowest cumulative time after each stage is honoured with the Ochre Jersey. Similarly, leaders in the Sprint, Mountains and Youth classifications wear jerseys to signify their positions in those standings.


Umber is a natural brown or reddish-brown earth pigment that contains iron oxide and manganese oxide. Umber is darker than the other similar earth pigments, ochre and sienna.In its natural form, it is called raw umber. When heated (calcinated), the color becomes more intense, and then becomes known as burnt umber.

The name comes from terra d'ombra, or earth of Umbria, the Italian name of the pigment. Umbria is a mountainous region in central Italy where the pigment was originally extracted. The word also may be related to the Latin word Umbra.Umber is not one precise color, but a range of different colors, from medium to dark, from yellowish to reddish to grayish. The color of the natural earth depends upon the amount of iron oxide and manganese in the clay. Umber earth pigments contain between five and twenty percent manganese oxide, which accounts for their being a darker color than yellow ochre or sienna.

Commercial colors vary depending upon the manufacturer or the color list. Not all umber pigments contain natural earths; some contain synthetic iron and manganese oxide, indicated on the label. Pigments containing the natural umber earths indicate them on the label as PBr7 (Pigment brown 7), following the Colour Index International system.

The color shown in the box at right is one of the many commercial varieties of umber, from the ISCC-NBS color list: ISCC-NBS Dictionary of Color Names (1955)—Color Sample of Umber (color sample #61).

Yamnaya culture

The Yamnaya culture (Russian: Ямная культура, romanized: Yamnaya kultura, lit. 'pit culture'), also known as the Yamna culture (Ukrainian: Ямна культура, romanized: Yamna kultura), Pit Grave culture, or Ochre Grave culture, was a late Copper Age to early Bronze Age archaeological culture of the region between the Southern Bug, Dniester, and Ural rivers (the Pontic steppe), dating to 3300–2600 BC. Its name derives from its characteristic burial tradition: kurgans containing a simple pit chamber.

The people of the Yamnaya culture were likely the result of admixture between the descendants of Eastern European hunter-gatherers and people related to hunter-gatherers from the Caucasus. Their material culture was very similar to the Afanasevo culture.

They are also closely connected to later Final Neolithic cultures, which spread throughout Europe and Central Asia, especially the Corded Ware people, but also the Bell Beaker culture as well as the peoples of the Sintashta, Andronovo, and Srubna cultures. In these groups, several aspects of the Yamnaya culture are present. Genetic studies have also indicated that these populations derived large parts of their ancestry from the steppes.The Yamnaya culture is identified with the late Proto-Indo-Europeans, and is the strongest candidate for the urheimat (original homeland) of the Proto-Indo-European language.


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