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The Okar, or Yellow Martians are an insular race living in the freezing northern regions of Mars. Their cities are built under glass domes, protecting them from the harsh arctic environment.

Biology and Attire[]


The Yellow Martians are essentially human. They have skin that John Carter described as "the color of a ripe lemon", and the men sport beards. When venturing out into the snow-filled land of the north, the Yellow men wear heavy clothes made from apt and orluk fur, but within their cities they are as naked as any other Martian.


In the past they were one of the dominant species on the planet, it is apparent that at some point their skin color was slightly more reddish but still primarily yellow. The game of jetan is apparently based on their early conflicts with the black Martians.

When the oceans and seas of the world began to dry, the brutal Greens became more numerous. They drove the Yellows further and further north, until finally the surviving Yellows reached what are now known as the Carrion Caves. They made a last-stand effort against their green-skinned tormentors, standing their ground in the mouth of the caves, which squashed the Green forces together, making it easier for the Yellow men to slaughter them. When the battle ended, the Yellows were victorious, and to discourage any further campaigns by the Greens, they piled up the bodies of all those killed in the battle at the entrance to the cave. The stench repulsed other invaders and attracted the fearsome Apts.


Okar culture is extremely isolationist, stemming in part from the history of the race that drove them to the frozen north pole. They maintain their borders with the all-but-impenetrable ice wall encircling the northern polar ice cap, and prevent any airships from crossing above it via the magnetic force generated by the Guardian of the North, a massive tower that can disable and destroy any incoming aircraft. The only way through this barrier by ground was through the horrific abattoir of the Carrion Caves, which itself served as a defense against invaders, particularly the Green Martians who once hunted them.

The Okar live primarily in domed, hothouse cities strewn across the frozen landscape. These domed cities each acts as an independent city-state with its own jeddak. The ruler of all Okar is thusly titled "jeddak of jeddaks" (distinct from the appellation given to the Warlord of Barsoom).

As one of the "ancient" races of Barsoom, the Okar do maintain communication with the Therns and, to a lesser extent, the First Born. This is what allowed Matai Shang and Thurid to flee to the north to temporarily escape John Carter's pursuit in The Warlord of Mars. Like both of these races, the Okar make slaves of the Red Martians from the outer world, though drawn to them through the power of the Guardian. Unlike the White Martians, who enslaved others due to their supposed divinity, and the First Born, who had the cultural imperative to not labor in any way, the Okar enslaved people through sheer force of might and the belief in might-makes-right. Any who did not make worthwhile slaves were fed to the apts for sport and to refresh the terrible stench and horror of the Carrion Caves.


Not much is known about Yellow Martian religion, other than the fact that, until Carter exposed it as a deadly fraud, the yellow men apparently paid homage to the false religion of Issus and the Holy Therns. It is also of note that the ferocious apt was apparently considered sacred by those in Kadabra.


  • Surprisingly the Yellow Martians only actually appeared in Warlord of Mars. They are mentioned from time to time in the other books but do not actually appear.