Anthocyanin constituents in black raspberries (Rubus occidentalis L.) were investigated by HPLC-DAD, and their involvement as potent, significant antioxidants in black raspberries was demonstrated by three common antioxidant assays (FRAP, DPPH, ABTS) in this study. Five anthocyanins were present in black raspberries: cyanidin 3-sambubioside, cyanidin 3-glucoside, cyanidin 3-xylosylrutinoside, cyanidin 3-rutinoside, and pelargonidin 3-rutinoside. Their identities and structures, with particular emphasis on cyanidin 3-xylosylrutinoside, were confirmed by NMR spectroscopy. Two of these anthocyanins, cyanidin 3-rutinoside and cyanidin 3-xylosylrutinoside, predominated, comprising 24-40 and 49-58%, respectively, of the total anthocyanins in black raspberries. On the basis of both potency and concentration, cyanidin 3-rutinoside and cyanidin 3-xylosylrutinoside were found to be the significant contributors to the antioxidant systems of black raspberries. These findings indicate that these two anthocyanin compounds may function as the primary phenolic antioxidants in black raspberries. These two compounds exhibit potential biological activities that may be exploited in conjunction with other naturally occurring bioactive compounds in black raspberry fruit-based products used in clinical trials for the treatment of various types of cancer.