Over the past four decades, several functional hypotheses have been proposed for archaeological ochre. Ochre has been shown to have antiseptic properties and to inhibit the bacterial production of collagenase. These qualities are repeatedly cited to support the hypothesis that red ochre was used to preserve or ‘tan’ animal hides in prehistory. If clothing made from hides was worn by Homo sapiens in Africa, then hide tanning could have formed a part of the trend towards increasingly modern technological and social advances during the Middle to Late Pleistocene. This paper presents the results of an experimental study exploring the efficacy of ochre as a treatment for making unprocessed animal hide resistant to putrification and desiccation. This study shows that certain types of ochre do preserve animal hide. The implications of this technological advance for the emergence of human behavioural modernity in Africa are discussed.
Africa from more than 200 ky at Border cave and Kathu Pan (Beaumont 1990; Watts 2016). The exploitation of redochre remains in this geographic area is more intense and widespread during Marine Isotope Stage ( mis ) 5 and 4 from about 130 to 60 ka than anywhere else where modern humans or other human
Excavation of the five hectare site of Walaldé revealed an occupation by iron-using agropastoralists that began [800–550] cal BC, and continued until [400–200] cal BC. The earliest occupation phase appears to document a period of transitional iron use, with some worked stone in evidence. Smelting and forging slags and tuyeres are present in considerable quantities in the later phase. Copper with the distinctive chemical signature of the Akjoujt mines in Mauritania was also present after 550 cal BC, attesting to trade and interaction over long distances. Other important aspects of the Walaldé sequence include ceramic materials and a series of red ochre burials. Possible cultural affinities with shell midden sites in the Senegal Delta, surface material from the Lac Rkiz region, and pastoralist sites of the ‘Boudhida Culture’ around Nouakchott are discussed. The article concludes with a consideration of Walaldé’s significance to the debate over the origins of iron metallurgy in West Africa.
[German version] Cursive form of the Egyptian hieroglyphic script, both used alongside each other from their beginnings (c. 3000 BC) to the 3rd cent. AD. The cursive was especially used in administration, religion, literature, science, magic and for correspondence. Using black soot ink or red
Belief in survival after death seems to go very far back into prehistory. Funeral rites of the late paleolithic age (deposits of arms and food, redochre) leave little doubt as to the existence of a conception of the “living corpse”, such as is to be found amongst many primitive peoples, as well as
⇐ PreviousBrowse ⇑Next ⇒ Entry Inscription painted in redochre on the left wall of the rectangular hall belonging to the rock-cut tomb mentioned in SEG 47 1860/1861. Ed.pr. G.Kiourtzian, CArch 45 (1997) 36/37 (ph.; translation). Inscription [. . .]ẸṬI πλημελῶ φθάση μου [ἡ φοβερὰ ἡμέρα τῆς
⇐ PreviousBrowse ⇑Next ⇒ Entry Flat limestone block, found in 1980 in the Nabataean theatre; at the left side of the stone a line is drawn; line and letters filled with redochre. Ed. pr. A. Negev, op.cit. (cf. SEG 31 1400) 73-76 no. 92 (ph.; dr.); id., RBi 88 (1981) 588-590 (ph.). Cf. now also J
⇐ PreviousBrowse ⇑Next ⇒ Entry SEG 34 771; 46 954; IGDOP 98. B.Bravo, art.cit. (SEG 51 978) 157-164 (French translation), presents an improved edition of this text, arguing that it is a defixio. The ostrakon was found covered by a layer of redochre, on which an X was engraved; this may have been a
!” The messengers were brought immediately, and the majesty of this god said: “Go to Yebu and bring me redochreOr hematite. in great quantity!” The redochre was brought to him, and the majesty of this god ordered the Side–Lock Wearer in OnThe high priest of Re in Heliopolis. to grind the ochre, while
also reads some more lines; the text is written in redochre; in many places it is covered by stucco from Christian times which bears a Coptic inscription. No. 82 corresponds more or less to LL. 1-5 of Ł.’s new text, 82bis to LL. 6/7; the inscription was engraved in two different hands. Ł.’s text runs