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All of the current ores.

Ores are rare stone blocks used to obtain resources.


Ores isolated down to bedrock

Ores are primarily collected for crafting purposes, such as for tools and armor. Redstone is obtained from redstone ore, which can be used to create redstone circuits. Ore can also be combined to create a block of the material's type.

This graph shows the actual amount of ore found in a relatively small but untapped world.

Obtaining resources from ores is as simple as mining them (this is not the case for iron and gold ores, which must be smelted). Coal, diamond, emerald, and nether quartz ores drop 1 unit corresponding raw materials. Redstone ore drops 4-5 redstone dust, and lapis lazuli ore drops 4-8 lapis lazuli. Note this can be increased greatly with fortune. All ore blocks except iron and gold require a Silk Touch pickaxe to drop themselves.

As a smelting ingredient[edit]

Ingredients Smelting recipe
Any raw ore + Any fuel

Further uses[edit]

All mineral blocks except quartz are crafted by putting 9 of the raw material items in a square. Quartz blocks are irreversibly crafted with 4 nether quartz and can be crafted in the inventory.

Ingredients Crafting recipe
Any processed ore

All raw materials except quartz can be crafted from their mineral blocks.

Ingredients Crafting recipe
Most mineral blocks


The following is the distribution of ores according to the altitude (layers are number of blocks above the lowest layer of bedrock). The highest layers that gold, redstone, diamond, and lapis lazuli can be found on are two layers lower.[1] The graph on the right shows the ore distribution. More graphs can be found on reddit[1].

Ore type Most found on... Commonly found up to... Rare on layers... None at or above... Lowest tier of pickaxe needed for drop Found in...
Coal[note 1] Layers 5-52 Layer 128 Layer 129-131 Layer 132 Wooden Overworld
Iron Layers 5-54 Layer 64 Layer 65-67 Layer 68 Stone Overworld
Lapis Lazuli Layers 14-16[note 2] Layer 23 Layer 31-33 Layer 34 Stone Overworld
Gold Layers 5-29 Layer 29 Layer 31-33 Layer 34 Iron Overworld
Gold - In Badlands Layers 32-63 Layer 76 Layer 77-79 Layer 80 Iron Overworld, in Badlands biomes only
Diamond Layers 5-12 Layer 12 Layer 13-15 Layer 16 Iron Overworld
Redstone Layers 5-12 Layer 12 Layer 13-15 Layer 16 Iron Overworld
Emerald[note 3] Layers 5-29 Layer 29 Layer 30-32 Layer 33 Iron Overworld, in Mountains biomes only
Nether Quartz[note 4] Layers 15-120 Layer 120 Layer 124-125 Layer 126 Wooden The Nether
  1. This refers to coal ore blocks spawned in ore veins and not as parts of fossils or mansion forges.
  2. Unlike other ores, lapis lazuli's frequency peaks around layer 15, and slowly tapers off above and below.
  3. Instead of multi-block veins, emerald ore is placed in scattered blocks.
  4. Quartz spawns equally in all parts of the Nether (not counting lava and bedrock.)

Redstone has the same layer and line-size statistics as Diamond, but is generated 8 times per chunk as opposed to 1.


Coal Iron Gold Redstone Lapis Lazuli Diamond Emerald Nether Quartz
Ore block Coal Ore.png Iron Ore.png Gold Ore.png Redstone Ore.png Lapis Lazuli Ore.png Diamond Ore.png Emerald Ore.png Nether Quartz Ore.png
Refined resource Coal.png Iron Ingot.png Gold Ingot.png Redstone Dust.png Lapis Lazuli.png Diamond.png Emerald.png Nether Quartz.png
Mineral block Block of Coal.png Block of Iron.png Block of Gold.png Block of Redstone.png Lapis Lazuli Block.png Block of Diamond.png Block of Emerald.png Block of Quartz.png



Java Edition Classic
May 21, 2009Notch shows interest in adding iron ore.
0.0.14a Iron Ore.png Coal Ore.png Gold Ore Revision 1.png Added gold ore, iron ore, and coal ore.
These ores could only be found exposed in amounts ranging from roughly 10 to 30 in a vein.
October 24, 2009Texture change for gold ore teased.
0.27 SURVIVAL TEST Gold Ore.png Changed the texture of gold ore.
Mining an ore will now give the corresponding block of it.
Java Edition Indev
0.31 Diamond Ore.png Added diamond ore.
Java Edition Infdev
March 20, 2010 Random ore is now placed randomly around the terrain.
March 27, 2010 Ores will now replace stone upon a world reload.
March 30, 2010 The ore change of replacing stone upon a world reload has been reverted.
Java Edition Alpha
v1.0.1 Redstone Ore.png Added redstone ore.
Java Edition Beta
1.2 Lapis Lazuli Ore.png Added lapis lazuli ore.
1.8 ?The highest layer for some ores has been lowered by 2.
Java Edition
1.0.0 Beta 1.9 Prerelease 4 Coal, diamond, redstone, and lapis lazuli ore will now also drop as ore blocks with Silk Touch.
1.3.1 12w21a Ruby Ore.png On May 21, 2012, the week before the release of 12w21a, Jeb released a screenshot of himself testing the trading system.[2] At this time, what would become emerald ore was ruby ore.[3] For the release of 12w21a, the block was changed to an emerald ore. The texture for emerald ore remained unchanged, as Jeb forgot to commit the new texture in the snapshot.[4]
12w21b Emerald Ore.png Changed texture of emerald ore.
12w22a All ores except gold and iron (which give experience when smelted) will now drop experience points when mined.
Emerald ore veins will now always consist of single blocks.
1.5 13w01a Nether Quartz Ore.png Added nether quartz ore.
1.8 14w29a Ore generation is now a lot faster.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.1.0 Coal Ore.pngIron Ore.pngRedstone Ore.pngLapis Lazuli Ore.pngGold Ore.pngDiamond Ore.png Added coal, iron, redstone, gold, lapis and diamond ores.
0.3.0 Coal ore will now drop coal.
0.3.2 Diamond ore will now drop a diamond.
Iron and gold ores are now smeltable into metal ingots.
0.4.0 Lapis lazuli ore will now drop the lapis lazuli dye.
0.8.0 ?Redstone ore will now finally drop redstone dust.
0.9.0 ?Emerald Ore.png Added emerald ore.
0.12.1 ?Nether Quartz Ore.png Added nether quartz ore.
Mining ores will now give experience.