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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocotyledons
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Subfamily: Pooideae
Tribe: Triticeae
Genus: Secale
Species: S. cereale
Binomial name
Secale cereale

Rye (Secale cereale) is a grass grown extensively as a grain and as a forage crop. It is a member of the wheat tribe (Triticeae) and is closely related to barley and wheat. Rye grain is used for flour, rye bread, rye beer, some whiskies, some vodkas, and animal fodder. It can also be eaten whole, either as boiled rye berries, or by being rolled, similar to rolled oats.

Rye is a cereal grain and should not be confused with ryegrass, which is used for lawns, pasture, and hay for livestock.



Rye is one of a number of species that grow wild in central and eastern Turkey, and adjacent areas. Domesticated rye occurs in small quantities at a number of Neolithic sites in Turkey, such as PPNB Can Hasan III, but is otherwise virtually absent from the archaeological record until the Bronze Age of central Europe, c. 1800-1500 BC.[1] It is possible that rye traveled west from Turkey as a minor admixture in wheat, and was only later cultivated in its own right. Although archeological evidence of this grain has been found in Roman contexts along the Rhine, Danube, and in the British Isles, Pliny the Elder was dismissive of rye, writing that it "is a very poor food and only serves to avert starvation" and spelt is mixed into it "to mitigate its bitter taste, and even then is most unpleasant to the stomach" (N.H. 18.40).

Since the Middle Ages, rye has been widely cultivated in Central and Eastern Europe, and is the main bread cereal in most areas east of the French-German border and north of Hungary.

Claims of much earlier cultivation of rye, at the Epipalaeolithic site of Tell Abu Hureyra in the Euphrates valley of northern Syria, remain controversial. Critics point to inconsistencies in the radiocarbon dates, and identifications based solely on grain, rather than on chaff.


wild rye

Winter rye is any breed of rye planted in the fall to provide ground cover for the winter. It actually grows during any warmer days of the winter, when sunlight temporarily brings the plant to above freezing, even while there is still general snow cover. It can be used to prevent the growth of winter-hardy weeds, and can either be harvested as a bonus crop, or tilled directly into the ground in spring to provide more organic matter for the next summer's crop. It is sometimes used in winter gardens, and is a very common nurse crop.

The flame moth, rustic shoulder-knot and turnip moth are among the species of Lepidoptera whose larvae feed on rye.

Production and consumption statistics

Worldwide rye production
Top Ten Rye Producers — 2005
(million metric ton)
 Russia 3.6
 Poland 3.4
 Germany 2.8
 Belarus 1.2
 Ukraine 1.1
 China 0.6
 Canada 0.4
 Turkey 0.3
 United States 0.2
 Austria 0.2
World Total 13.3
Source: FAO [2]
Ca 33 mg
Fe 2,67 mg
Mg 121 mg
P 374 mg
K 264 mg
Na 6 mg
Zn 3,73 mg
Cu 0,450 mg
Mg 2,680 mg
Se 0,035 mg

Rye is grown primarily in Eastern, Central and Northern Europe. The main rye belt stretches from northern Germany through Poland, Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania and Latvia into central and northern Russia. Rye is also grown in North America (Canada and the USA), in South America (Argentina, Brazil), in Turkey, in Kazakstan and in northern China.

Production levels of rye are falling in most of the producing nations due to falling demand. For instance, production of rye in Russia fell from 13.9 million tons in 1992 to just 3.4 Mt in 2005. Corresponding figures for other countries are as follows: Poland - 5.9 Mt in 1992 and 3.4 Mt in 2005; Germany - 3.3 Mt & 2.8 Mt; Belarus - 3.1 Mt & 1.2 Mt; China - 1.7 Mt & 0.6 Mt; Kazakhstan - 0.6 Mt & 0.02 Mt.

Most of rye is consumed locally, and is exported only to neighbouring countries, but not worldwide.


Rye is highly susceptible to the ergot fungus. Consumption of ergot-infected rye by humans and animals results in a serious medical condition known as ergotism. Ergotism can cause both physical and mental harm, including convulsions, miscarriage, necrosis of digits, and hallucinations. Historically, damp northern countries that have depended on rye as a staple crop were subject to periodic epidemics of this condition. There have been "occurrence[s] of ergotism with periods where there were high incidents of people persecuted for being witches. Emphasis was placed on the Salem witch trials in Massachusetts in 1692, where there was a sudden rise in the number of people accused of being witches, but earlier examples were taken from Europe, as well."[3]


Secale cereale - cereal rye - Steve Hurst USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database.jpg
Secale cereale - cereal rye 2 - Steve Hurst USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database.jpg

Rye bread, including pumpernickel, is a widely eaten food in Northern and Eastern Europe. Rye is also used to make the familiar crisp bread. Rye flour has a lower gluten content than wheat flour, and contains a higher proportion of soluble fiber.

Other uses of rye include rye whiskey and an alternative medicine known as rye extract. Rye straw is used to make corn dollies.


  1. ^ Daniel Zohary and Maria Hopf, Domestication of plants in the Old World, third edition (Oxford: University Press, 2000), p. 75
  2. ^ Major Food And Agricultural Commodities And Producers - Countries By Commodity
  3. ^ Ergot of Rye: History

External links

  • Rolf Schlegel: Genes, markers, and linkage data of rye(Secale cereale L.)[1]
  • Rolf Schlegel: Current List of Wheats with Rye and Alien [2]
  • Rolf Schlegel: Plant breeding updates [3]

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Rye is a town in East Sussex.

Rye on a rainy afternoon
Rye on a rainy afternoon
A typical Rye street
A typical Rye street

Get in

By train

Trains run directly from Ashford International and Brighton with trains to London calling at both stations. Times for trains anywhere to Rye from anywhere in the UK can be found on the National Rail website [].

By bus

There are buses from Hastings and Dover, the timetable can be found here [1].

Get around

Rye can be easily explored on foot. However, it may be worth taking the bus to Camber to see the local sandy beach or finding a bicycle to go down Habour Road to explore the Harbor mouth and local bird reserve.


The docks by the river; Rye Castle (with Ypres Tower). Rye also has a 12th century church, overlooking the town. The old town town centre is very picturesque with its extreme cobblestone roads (ensure you wear sensible shoes), its many timber-framed houses, and the occasional traditional -though now slightly touristy- tearoom invites to cream tea.

There are many places which overlook the local scenery, from Rye Castle you can see out to Dungeoness. Recently wind turbines have been placed near to Rye, which has changed the nature of the landscape.


Walk around the docks mentioned above, visit the many shops. Climb the church tower to get a magnificent view over Rye and its surroundings. Walk across the meadows to the ruins of Camber Castle (open on summer weekends; check with its owner, the English Heritage). Visit Ypres tower and have a chat with the elderly gentleman who has been keeping it open visitors for the last 15 years. Get locked in in one of its small, dark cells!


Rye has a wide variety of shops, from wool to antiques and from art galleries to tea rooms there is something for most people. There are also several shops which sell local Sussex produce. Most of the shops can be found on the main High Street, although there are also several pleasant shops near the docks.

Rye has a lively market most Thursday mornings selling a variety of goods.


There is a wide range of eatteries in and around Rye.

The Gandhi Tandoori (Indian) Simply Italian (Italian) Landgate Bistro (French) The Standard Pub (English) Kettle O Fish (Fish & Chips, English)

  • The Bedford Arms 91 Fishmarket Road, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7LR [01797 224867]
  • The George Inn As the main coaching inn in Rye, The George Tap has long been the popular drinking venue in town. We serve real ales, draught cider and continental beers. There is also a good selection of wines by the glass and a healthy representation from local vineyards in East Sussex and Kent. Address: 98 High Street, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7JT [01797 222 114]
  • The Standard Quintessential English 15th century inn with large fireplaces and ancient oak beams. The Standard Inn is a traditional pub serving a wide range of drinks including real ales. We also serve light lunches, evening meals and have guest rooms. Beers include Fullers London Pride and Marstons Pedigree. The Mint, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7EN [01797 223393]
  • The Union Inn Traditional 15th century pub with wooden beams and a cosy relaxed atmosphere. Allegedly 'the most haunted inn in historic medieval Rye'. 8 East Street, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7JY [01797 222334]
  • Ye Olde Bell Inn 33 The Mint, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7EN [01797 223323]
  • The Ypres Castle Inn 17th century weather-boarded pub with live music on Friday nights. Four real ales and a boules pitch. Views of the River Rother. Address: Gun Gardens, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7HH [01797 223248]
  • Cinque Ports Inn The oldest pub in Rye. Traditional and friendly English pub where you can enjoy the best of Shepherd Neame's real ale, with good lagers and ciders, in a clean and comfortable setting. With restaurant and bed and breakfast accommodation.
  • Globe Inn Freehouse pub and restaurant in Rye with music nights on Mondays. Harveys is one of the regular beers.
  • Mermaid Inn 15th century, timbered, pub in the historic, cobbled street surroundings of Rye. Beers include Old Speckled Hen and Courage Best. Accommodation in wooden-beamed rooms with 4-poster beds.
  • The Ship Inn 16th century inn situated amongst the old warehouses (now antique shops) alongside the river estuary in Rye. Cask beer served straight from the barrel. Provides accommodation.

Other Pubs

  • Strand Quay
  • The Hare and Hounds Main Road, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7ST [01797 230483]
  • The Queens Head 19, Landgate, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 7LH [01797 222181]
  • The Hope Anchor Watchbell St Rye, East Sussex TN31 7HA United Kingdomm +44 (0)1797 222216, [2]. The Hope Anchor is a mid 18th Century Hotel built at the end of one of the most delightful streets in Rye.
  • The Place at the Beach New Lydd Road, Camber, TN31 7RB +44.(0) 1797 225 057, Fax: +44.(0) 1797 227 003, [3]. Overlooking the dunes, the Place at the Beach is uniquely located a hop and a skip from one of the most dramatic white sandy beaches on the South Coast – Camber Sands. Rooms from €75.
  • One Life Escapes Holiday Cottages, [4]. Two beautifully finished luxury holiday cottages on the South coast of England, each stylishly presented with modern and contemporary finishes.  edit

Get out

Visit some of the other Cinque Ports, or the Hythe and Dymchurch Miniature Railway . To the west Hastings, Eastborne and Brighton are reachable by direct train. Near Rye passes the National Cycle Network, and you can hire a pushbike from "Rye Hire" near the rail station (friendly service, bikes in good condition, and come with a lock). Sadly the designated cycle paths are not always well signposted, or consist of paths with quite large rubble; you will have to show some determination. But it's fairly flat ground around Rye (although town centre is on a small hill), so for the non-driver this is an alternative to buses.

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

RYE. This cereal, known botanically as Secale cereale, is supposed to be the cultivated form of S. montanum, a wild perennial species occurring in the more elevated districts of parts of the Mediterranean region, and W. to Central Asia. Its cultivation does not appear to have been practised at a very early date, relatively speaking. Alphonse de Candolle, who has collected the evidence on this point, draws attention to the fact that no traces of this cereal have hitherto been found in Egyptian monuments, or in the earlier Swiss dwellings, though seeds have been found in association with weapons of the Bronze period at Olmiitz. The absence of any special name for it in the Semitic, Chinese and Sanskrit languages is also adduced as an indication of its comparatively recent culture. On the other hand, the general occurrence of the name in the more modern languages of N. Europe, under various modifications, points to the cultivation of the plant then, as now, in those regions. The origin of the Latin name secale, which exists in a modified form among the Basques and Bretons, is not explained. Rye is a tall-growing annual grass, with fibrous roots, flat, narrow, ribbon-like bluish-green leaves, and erect or decurved cylindrical slender spikes like those of barley. The spikelets contain two or three flowers, of which the uppermost is usually imperfect. The outer glumes are acute and glabrous, the flowering glumes lance-shaped, with a comb-like keel at the back, and the outer or lower one prolonged at the apex into a very long bristly awn. Within these are three stamens surrounding a compressed ovary, with two feathery stigmas. When ripe, the grain is of an elongated oval form, with a few hairs at the summit. When the ovaries of the plant become affected with a peculiar fungus (Claviceps purpurea) they become blackened and distorted, constituting ergot.

In the S. of Great Britain rye is chiefly or solely cultivated as a forage-plant for cattle and horses, being usually sown in autumn for spring use, after the crop of roots, turnips, &c., is exhausted, and before the clover and lucerne are ready. For forage purposes it is best to cut early, before the leaves and haulms have been exhausted of their supplies to benefit the grain. In the N. of Europe, and more especially in Scandinavia,. Russia and parts of N. Germany, rye is the principal cereal; and in nutritive value, as measured by the amount of gluten it contains, it stands next to wheat, a fact which furnishes the explanation of its culture in N. latitudes ill-suited for the growth of wheat. Rye bread or black bread is in general use in N. Europe. The straw, which is prized on account of its length, is used for making hats and in the manufacture of paper. The bran is used for cattle-food and poultices, and the grain in the distillery.

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010
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Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Wikipedia has an article on:





From Old English ryġe, from Proto-Germanic *rugiz. Cognates include Germanic Old Norse rugr (Danish rug, Swedish råg), German Roggen and from non-Germanic Indo-European Russian рожь (rož') and Old Prussian rugis.




countable and uncountable; plural ryes

rye (countable and uncountable; plural ryes)

  1. A grass, Secale cereale, or its grains used for food and fodder. Scientific name: Secale cereale.
  2. Rye whisky.
  3. Rye bread.

Derived terms



  • Anagrams of ery
  • yer


Up to date as of January 23, 2010
(Redirected to Edward Caldwell Rye article)

From Wikispecies

British entomologist (1832-1885)

Author British beetles: an introduction to the study of our indigenous Coleoptera

Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

=Rie, (Heb. kussemeth), found in Ex 9:32; Isa 28:25, in all of which the margins of the Authorized and of the Revised Versions have "spelt." This Hebrew word also occurs in Ezek 4:9, where the Authorized Version has "fitches' (q.v.) and the Revised Version "spelt." This, there can be no doubt, was the Triticum spelta, a species of hard, rough-grained wheat.

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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Simple English

Rye is a type of grass, usually grown as a grain or forage crop (meaning that it is fed to animals). It is a member of the wheat family of plants and is similar to wheat and barley. It is used to make flour, food for animals, and many types of alcoholic drinks.


Rye has not always been a plant humans can use. It was originally a wild plant. There are several wild plants in Turkey that are similar to rye.

Since the Middle Ages, rye has been used widely in Central and Eastern Europe. In these parts of the world, it is still one of the main ingredients in making bread. However, the number of people and businesses using rye is becoming lower. Rye is usually sold to buyers near to where it is grown.


Rye can be planted to feed animals or can be harvested for hay (dry grass). Rye is a strong plant that can survive in soil with a high or low pH. This means it can survive even if the soil is very acidic or alkaline. Other plants may struggle to survive in these pH levels.

Uses for humans

  • Rye bread, including pumpernickel. This is a popular bread in north and east Europe. It has advantages for a person's health, such as having a lower amount of gluten than wheat.
  • Alcoholic drinks, such as rye whiskey.koi:Рудзӧг


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