Wednesday, August 12, 2009

4,000-year-old dye found on Egyptian artifact

MSNBC (Randolph E. Schmid)

Four thousand years ago Egyptians had mastered the process of making madder, a red dye, according to a researcher who uncovered the earliest known example of the color still used today.

Refining a technique that allows the study of microscopic bits of pigment, Marco Leona of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York was able to analyze the color of a fragment of leather from an ancient Egyptian quiver.

The discovery that the color was madder is the earliest evidence for the complex chemical knowledge needed to extract the dye from a plant and turn it into a pigment, Leona reports in Tuesday's edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

See the above page for the full story.

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