This version of the story of madder is based on the three Russian sources written about 1860. Naturally they do not entirely agree with each other, drawing from different informants and covering an encouragingly wide range of disciplines. Where possible, later sources are used to fill in the gaps and to update various discoveries in areas such as dye analysis, archaeology and history. For convenience the three sources are referred to as Shtorkh, Karpov and The Ministry. These were written against a background of a 40year boom in the world and Russian textile industries and consequent demand for madder red dyestuff.