The List of Earliest Civilizations to Use Perfumes- Know the History!
We owe our ancestral civilizations a lot of things! Our present culture is built upon what they left behind thousands of years ago. But do we wonder that one very peculiar yet significant part of our lifestyle, perfumes, also had a journey dating back to several thousand years crossing paths of many different civilizations? Seeing some of the earliest civilizations producing, trading, and using perfumes is a bit shocking but kind of interesting to know! Today, we all have access to perfumes, but earlier, it was a luxury reserved for the nobility class. It was a trademark of their status and wealth. Throughout history, perfumes and fragrances were used in many different ways. Let us give you a glimpse of the journey of perfumes or fragrances over some time. Here is the list of some of the earliest civilizations that used perfumes. Also, to shop for perfumes, check out perfume shops near me, and get home a perfume couple set for both yourself and your partner.
1 – Mesopotamian CivilizationMesopotamian Civilization is one of the oldest civilizations that survived on earth. It is dated back to as early as 4000 BCE. The Mesopotamians believed in cleanliness and purity, and hence, for them, the perfumes were used to shred away the body odor and for hygiene purposes. The first perfume maker on record is believed to be a Mesopotamian woman called “Tapputi”. Her stories have been found on a clay tablet from Mesopotamia dating back to 2000 BCE.
2 – Ancient Egyptian CivilizationFragrances were a thing back then in Egyptian civilization. So much so that they attached divine importance to it. In Egyptian mythology, their God Nefertem is often depicted as the God of perfume, with water lilies in his hands. Water lilies were a common ingredient in Egyptian perfumes. Kings, queens, and high nobles also used perfumes daily. Queen Cleopatra used various kinds of fragrances to scent her body. These fragrances were usually made by distilling natural ingredients derived from fruits, flowers, and scented woods with vegetable oils or animal fat. Incense was also used during various ceremonies and to scent the rooms and halls. They even traded various incense and myrrh internationally for profits.
3 – Graeco-Roman CivilizationThe Greeks and Romans used perfumes on a large scale too. Greeks have even documented their perfume-making process in great detail. They considered perfumes to be a symbol of their prosperity and also used them to please the Gods. Greek medical physicians even came up with “Aromatherapy” where they believed that some good smells have health benefits and are calming for the body. They even used to pour scented oils in public baths to soothe and calm their body and rejuvenate their skin with fresh fragrances. Romans too used fragrances in many different ways. They used to scent their public baths with perfumes and also made body-care items such as balms, oils, paste, perfumes to treat their hair and skin.
4 – Ancient Persian CivilizationThe Ancient Persians were also huge fans of perfumes. They are known to be the inventors of non-oil-based perfumes. They used to infuse water with various fragrances and then used them to scent their hair, skin, and clothes. The perfume was a symbol of status for the Persians. Often, the kings used to have their signature fragrance which no one else was allowed to wear. King Darius is often depicted as holding his bottle of perfume with him everywhere. They not only used these fragrances but also traded them widely for hundreds of years. They built several perfume-making workshops where the art of making perfumes was promoted on a large scale.
5 – Early Chinese CivilizationAncient Chinese were also enchanted by these perfumes. They believed in cleanliness, therefore, they used fragrances for purity and hygiene. They also believed that some fragrances have medicinal properties, which is why they generally practiced anointing their bodies with fragrant paste to keep away the diseases. Their oriental fragrances were generally made of various Asian herbs and spices that were also used in food and medicine. Apart from that, they also extracted fragrances from plant oils, fruits and flowers. They used to infuse fragrances in the items of daily use such as stationary, carpets, sculptures, and articles at home.
6 – The Vedic PeriodIn India, we can find traces of usage of perfumes since the earliest times of the Vedic period. In the Vedic period in India, perfumes and various other fragrances were used in tantric rituals such as yajnas. The sculptures of Gods and Goddesses were usually anointed with Sandalwood paste (Chandan) which was a common fragrance at that time. Ancient queens anointed their bodies with sandalwood before bathing to smell good. Apart from that, even incense was used during various religious ceremonies and other occasions.
7 – Medieval European Period & The RenaissanceThe prominence of the modern perfumes can be traced back to the medieval European period. The Italians had become masters of the modern-day perfume-making process that replaced solid perfumes with liquid ones. The Mediterranean aroma started to gain prominence during the 16th century because of the ‘Godfather of Perfumes’, the famous ‘René Le Florentin’. He was also the Perfumer of Catherine De Medici, who introduced the art and essence of perfumes to France and subsequently, to the rest of Europe, upon her marriage with the French king Henry ll. Our balsamic and aromatic Le Florentine perfumes are inspired by the Godfather of Perfumes, René Le Florentin. We try to bring in the essence of the rich Mediterranean aromas to you through our fragrances. These are some of the examples that prove the prominence of fragrances and perfumes since the earliest of times. Perfumes were in vogue since the beginning of human civilizations. Now that you know the rich history of perfumes, do you find the perfumes even more interesting? Check out online perfume shops today and get your signature perfume like the royalty!