Yellow dyes in archaeological textiles: Sources, locations, identification, and challenges

Said Abu-Ghosh, Naama Sukenik, Zohar Amar, David Iluz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Dyes extracted from textiles of pre- and historical periods, or “archaeological textiles”, can provide important information as to how, when and where the textiles were made, and the role of textiles in ancient societies along with the social ranking during those times. Some of these textiles are rare finds in nature; therefore, the knowledge of their chemical composition is very critical in the process of their conservation. Therefore, choosing the proper dye extraction and identification methods should be considered. In this review, the focus is on the yellow dyes that were used in archeological textiles, including their plant sources, geological locations, and the methodological approaches for their analysis and characterization, since less known about these dyes in archeology, despite of their high abundance in nature. This review is not intended to be as a historical reference of archeological yellow dyes but instead aims to address the challenges in the currently used extraction and identification techniques, with suggested new directions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104030
JournalJournal of Archaeological Science: Reports
StatePublished - Jun 2023


  • Archaeological textiles
  • Dye analysis
  • Flavonoids
  • Natural dyes
  • Plant marker

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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