The word perfume is used today to describe scented mixtures and is derived from the Latin word, "per fumus," meaning through smoke. The word Perfumery refers to the art of making perfumes. Perfume was further refined by the Romans, the Persians and the Arabs. Although perfume and perfumery also existed in East Asia, much of its fragrances were incense based. The basic ingredients and methods of making perfumes are described by Pliny the Elder in his Naturalis Historia.
The world's first recorded chemist is a woman named Tapputi, a perfume maker whose existence was recorded on a 1200 BCE Cuneiform tablet in Babylonian Mesopotamia.She held a powerful role in the Mesopotamian government and religion, as the overseer of the Mesopotamian Royal Palace. She developed methods for scent extraction techniques that would lay the basis for perfume making. She recorded her techniques and methods and those were passed on, with her most groundbreaking technique in using solvents.
Perfume and perfumery also existed in Indus civilization, which existed from 3300 BCE to 1300 BCE. One of the earliest distillation of Ittar was mentioned in the Hindu Ayurvedic text Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita .The perfume references are part of a larger text called Brihat-Samhita written by Varāhamihira, an Indian astronomer, mathematician, and astrologer living in the city of Ujjain. He was one of the ‘nine jewels’ in the court of the Maharaja of Malwa. The perfume portion mainly deals with the manufacture of perfumes to benefit ‘royal personages and inmates of harems’. The text is written as Sanskrit slokas with commentary by a 10th-century Indian commentator Utpala.
According to a 1975 report, archeologist Dr Paolo Rovesti found a terracotta distillation apparatus in the Indus valley together with oil containers made of the same material, carbon dated to 3000 BCE. The report also states that terracotta vessels with plugged orifices of woven materials were used so that when fragrant plant materials were covered with boiling water the vapours impregnated the material, which was subsequently wrung out to isolate the oil.[ citation needed ]
To date, the oldest perfumery was discovered on the island of Cyprus.Excavations in 2004-2005 under the initiative of an Italian archaeological team unearthed evidence of an enormous factory that existed 4,000 years ago during the Bronze Age. This covered an estimated surface area of over 4,000m² indicating that perfume manufacturing was on an industrial scale. The news of this discovery was reported extensively through the world press and many artifacts are already on display in Rome. The Bible describes a sacred perfume (Exodus 30:22-33) consisting of liquid myrrh, fragrant cinnamon, fragrant cane, and cassia. Its use was forbidden, except by the priests. The women wore perfume to present their beauty.
Islamic cultures contributed significantly to the development of Middle Eastern perfumery in two significant areas: perfecting the extraction of fragrances through steam distillation and introducing new raw materials. Both have greatly influenced Western perfumery and scientific developments, particularly chemistry.
With a rise of Islam, Muslims improved perfume production and continued to use perfumes in daily life and in practicing religion. They used musk, roses and amber, among other materials. As traders, Islamic cultures such as the Arabs and Persians had wider access to a wide array of spices, resins, herbs, precious woods, herbs and animal fragrance materials such as ambergris and musk. In addition to trading, many of the flowers and herbs used in perfumery were cultivated by the Muslims — rose and jasmine were native to the region, and many other plants (i.e.: bitter orange and other citrus trees, all of which imported from China and southeast Asia) could be successfully cultivated in the Middle East, and are to this day key ingredients in perfumery.
In Islamic culture, perfume usage has been documented as far back as the 6th century and its usage is considered a religious duty. Muhammad said:
The taking of a bath on Friday is compulsory for every male Muslim who has attained the age of puberty and (also) the cleaning of his teeth with Miswaak (type of twig used as a toothbrush), and the using of perfume if it is available. (Recorded in Sahih Bukhari).
They often used to blend extracts with the cement of which mosques were built.Such rituals gave incentives to scholars to search and develop a cheaper way to produce incenses and in mass production.
The Arabic philosopher al-Kindi (c. 801–873) wrote a book on perfumes called ‘Book of the Chemistry of Perfume and Distillations’. It contained more than a hundred recipes for fragrant oils, salves, aromatic waters and substitutes or imitations of costly drugs. The book also described one hundred and seven methods and recipes for perfume-making, and even the perfume making equipment, like the alembic, still bears its Arabic name.
The Persian Muslim doctor and chemist Ibn Sina (also known as Avicenna) introduced the process of extracting oils from flowers by means of distillation, the procedure most commonly used today. He first experimented with the rose. Until his discovery, liquid perfumes were mixtures of oil and crushed herbs, or petals which made a strong blend. Rose water was more delicate, and immediately became popular. Both of the raw ingredients and distillation technology significantly influenced western perfumery and scientific developments, particularly chemistry.
Arabian perfume arrived to European courts through Al-Andalus in the west, and on the other side, with the crusaders in the east. For instance, eggs and floral perfumes were brought to Europe in the 11th and 12th centuries from Arabia, by returning crusaders, through trade with the Islamic world. Those who traded for these were most often also involved in trade for spices and dyestuffs. There are records of the Pepperers Guild of London, going back to 1179; which show them trading with Muslims in spices, perfume ingredients and dyes.Catharina de Medici initiated the perfume industry in Europe when she left Italy in the 16th century to marry the French crown prince.
Knowledge of something perfumery came to Europe as early as the 14th century due partially to Arabic influences and knowledge. But it was the Hungarians who ultimately introduced the first modern perfume. The first modern perfume, made of scented oils blended in an alcohol solution, was made in 1370 at the command of Queen Elizabeth of Hungary and was known throughout Europe as Hungary Water. The art of perfumery prospered in Renaissance Italy, and in the 16th century, Italian refinements were taken to France by Catherine de' Medici's personal perfumer, Rene le Florentin. His laboratory was connected with her apartments by a secret passageway, so that no formulas could be stolen en route.
France quickly became the European center of perfume and cosmetic manufacture. Cultivation of flowers for their perfume essence, which had begun in the 14th century, grew into a major industry in the south of France mainly in Grasse now considered the world capital of perfume. During the Renaissance period, perfumes were used primarily by royalty and the wealthy to mask body odors resulting from the sanitary practices of the day. Partly due to this patronage, the western perfumery industry was created. Perfume enjoyed huge success during the 17th century. Perfumed gloves became popular in France and in 1656, the guild of glove and perfume-makers was established. Perfumers were also known to create poisons; for instance, a French duchess was murdered when a perfume/poison was rubbed into her gloves and was slowly absorbed into her skin.
Perfume came into its own when Louis XV came to the throne in the 18th century. His court was called "la cour parfumée" (the perfumed court). Madame de Pompadour ordered generous supplies of perfume, and King Louis demanded a different fragrance for his apartment every day. The court of Louis XIV was even named due to the scents which were applied daily not only to the skin but also to clothing, fans and furniture. Perfume substituted for soap and water. The use of perfume in France grew steadily. By the 18th century, aromatic plants were being grown in the Grasse region of France to provide the growing perfume industry with raw materials. Even today, France remains the centre of the European perfume design and trade.
After Napoleon came to power, exorbitant expenditures for perfume continued. Two quarts of violet cologne were delivered to him each week, and he is said to have used sixty bottles of double extract of jasmine every month. Josephine had stronger perfume preferences. She was partial to musk, and she used so much that sixty years after her death the scent still lingered in her boudoir.
Perfume use peaked in England during the reigns of Henry VIII (reigned 1509-1547) and Queen Elizabeth I (reigned 1558-1603). All public places were scented[ by whom? ] during Queen Elizabeth's rule, since she could not tolerate bad smells.[ citation needed ] It was said that the sharpness of her nose was equaled only by the slyness of her tongue. Ladies of the day took great pride in creating delightful fragrances and they displayed their skill in mixing scents in a manor houses' still room.
As with industry and the arts, perfume underwent profound change in the 19th century. Changing tastes and the development of modern chemistry laid the foundations of modern perfumery as alchemy gave way to chemistry.
Perfume manufacture in Russia grew after 1861 and became globally significant by the early 20th century.The production of perfume in the Soviet Union became a part of the planned economy in the 1930s, although output was not high.
In early America, the first scents were colognes and scented water by French explorers in New France. Florida water, an uncomplicated mixture of eau de cologne with a dash of oil of cloves, cassia and lemongrass, was popular.[ citation needed ]
Grasse is the sole subprefecture of the Alpes-Maritimes department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d'Azur region on the French Riviera. In 2017, the commune had a population of 50,396.
Perfume is a mixture of fragrant essential oils or aroma compounds, fixatives and solvents, usually in liquid form, used to give the human body, animals, food, objects, and living-spaces an agreeable scent.
Musk is a class of aromatic substances commonly used as base notes in perfumery. They include glandular secretions from animals such as the musk deer, numerous plants emitting similar fragrances, and artificial substances with similar odors. Musk was a name originally given to a substance with a strong odor obtained from a gland of the musk deer. The substance has been used as a popular perfume fixative since ancient times and is one of the most expensive animal products in the world. The name originates from the Late Greek μόσχος 'moskhos', from Persian 'mushk', similar to Sanskrit मुष्क muṣka ("testicle"), derived from Proto-Indo-European noun "mouse". The deer gland was thought to resemble a scrotum. It is applied to various plants and animals of similar smell and has come to encompass a wide variety of aromatic substances with similar odors, despite their often differing chemical structures and molecular shapes.
Orris root is a term used for the roots of Iris germanica and Iris pallida. It had the common name of Queen Elizabeth Root.
Labdanum, also called ladanum, ladan or ladanon, is a sticky brown resin obtained from the shrubs Cistus ladanifer and Cistus creticus, species of rockrose. It was historically used in herbal medicine and is still used in the preparation of some perfumes and vermouths.
Benzoin or benjamin is a balsamic resin obtained from the bark of several species of trees in the genus Styrax. It is used in perfumes, some kinds of incense, as a flavoring, and medicine. It is distinct from the chemical compound benzoin, which is ultimately derived from benzoin resin; the resin, however, does not contain this compound.
Neroli oil is an essential oil produced from the blossom of the bitter orange tree. Its scent is sweet, honeyed and somewhat metallic with green and spicy facets. Orange blossom is also extracted from the same blossom and both extracts are extensively used in perfumery. Orange blossom can be described as smelling sweeter, warmer and more floral than neroli. The difference between how neroli and orange blossom smell and why they are referred to with different names, is a result of the process of extraction that is used to obtain the oil from the blooms. Neroli is extracted by steam distillation and orange blossom is extracted via a process of enfleurage or solvent extraction.
A pomander, from French pomme d'ambre, i.e., apple of amber, is a ball made for perfumes, such as ambergris, musk, or civet. The pomander was worn or carried in a vase, also known by the same name, as a protection against infection in times of pestilence or merely as a useful article to modify bad smells. The globular cases which contained the pomanders were hung from a neck-chain or belt, or attached to the girdle, and were usually perforated in a variety of openwork techniques, and made of gold or silver. Sometimes they contained several partitions, in each of which was placed a different perfume.
Notes in perfumery are descriptors of scents that can be sensed upon the application of a perfume. Notes are separated into three classes: top/head notes, middle/heart notes, and base notes; which denote groups of scents which can be sensed with respect to the time after the application of a perfume. These notes are created carefully with knowledge of the evaporation process and intended use of the perfume. The presence of one note may alter the perception of another—for instance, the presence of certain base or heart notes will alter the scent perceived when the top notes are strongest, and likewise the scent of base notes in the dry-down will often be altered depending on the smells of the heart notes.
Chypre is the name of a family of perfumes that are characterised by an accord composed of citrus top notes, a middle centered on cistus labdanum, and a mossy-animalic set of basenotes derived from oakmoss. Chypre perfumes fall into numerous classes according to their modifier notes, which include but are not limited to leather, florals, fruits, and amber.
Cosmetics ingredients come from a variety of sources but, unlike the ingredients of food, are often not considered by most consumers. Cosmetics often use vibrant colors that are derived from a wide variety of sources, ranging from crushed insects to rust.
Eau de toilette literally translated as toilet water is a lightly scented cologne used as a skin freshener. It is also referred to as "aromatic waters" and has a high alcohol content. It is usually applied directly to the skin after bathing or shaving. It was originally composed of alcohol and various volatile oils. Traditionally these products were named after a principal ingredient; some being geranium water, lavender water, lilac water, violet water, spirit of myrcia and 'eau de Bretfeld'. Because of this, eau de toilette was sometimes referred to as "toilet water".
Ittar, also known as attar, is an essential oil derived from botanical sources. Most commonly these oils are extracted via hydro or steam distillation. The Persian physician Ibn Sina, known as Avicenna in Europe, was first to derive the attar of flowers from distillation. Attar can also be expressed by chemical means but generally natural perfumes which qualify as ittars are distilled with water. The oils are generally distilled into a wood base such as sandalwood and then aged. The aging period can last from one to ten years depending on the botanicals used and the results desired. Technically ittars are distillates of flowers, herbs, spices and other natural materials such as baked soil over sandalwood oil/liquid paraffins using hydrodistillation technique involving a still (deg) and receiving vessel (bhapka). These techniques are still in use today at Kannauj in India.
Scented water, odoriferous water or sweet water, is a water with a sweet aromatic smell. It is made of flowers or herbs and is the precursor of the modern day perfume. Scented waters are also used in making other products such as pomanders and body care products.
Deer musk is a substance with a persistent odor, obtained from the caudal glands of the male musk deer.
Opopanax is the commercial name of bisabol or bissabol, the fragrant gum resin of Commiphora guidottii. It has been a major export article from Somalia since ancient times, and is called hebbakhade, habaghadi or habak hadi in Somali. It is an important ingredient in perfumery and therefore known as scented myrrh, perfumed myrrh or perfumed bdellium.
Kannauj Perfume, also known as Kannauj Ittar, is a traditional Indian perfume manufacture. The perfume production is popular in Kannauj, in the Uttar Pradesh state, India.
Lovely is a 2005 perfume released by Sarah Jessica Parker. Its development was the subject of a 2008 book by then-New York Times perfume critic Chandler Burr called The Perfect Scent: A Year Behind the Scenes of the Perfume Industry in Paris and New York.
George William Septimus Piesse, known as Septimus Piesse, was an English chemist and perfumer. Piesse was a leading author and innovator of modern perfume ideas, inventing the concept of notes in perfumery that are still used universally today. He was the co-owner of Piesse and Lubin, a perfume house that created some of the most popular scents of its day.
Russia had begun to modernize its extremely backward economy after the abolition of serfdom in 1861. There was a heavy French presence in many of Russia's new industries [...] including perfume. In 1864 Henri Brocard, the son of a small Parisian perfumer, opened a soap and perfume business in Moscow [...] Brocard expanded a business which sold in the major cities in Russia, and its factory in Moscow made perfumes, soaps, powders, cosmetics, and even dental care products. [...] [T]here is evidence that the leading Russian houses may have been amongst the world's largest perfume companies by the 1900s. Brocard had sales of $500,000 in 1904. Rallet, which sold in the Balkans as well as in Asian countries surrounding Russia, achieved sales of 50 million francs, or nearly $10 million, by 1914.
Soviet perfume production had already become a matter for central state planning in the Stalinist 1930s, although output was not high.