Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Perfumery, the art of extracting odours from flowers, fruits, and other substances, and recombining them for use in the toilet and for other purposes. Perfumes were known to and used by the Egyptians, Phoenicians, Assyrians, and Persians, and were used by the Greeks and Romans in worship, for the toilet, and for rendering wines more agreeable. Perfumes were adopted into Christian worship as earty as the 5th century. The Arabs brought the art into Spain, and it was quickly adopted and improved upon in France and Italy, though in the latter country the employment of perfumes in the fine art of poisoning led to their passing out of fashion and popularity. They were popular in England during the 15th and 16th centuries, since which time their use has considerably diminished, so far, at least, as men are concerned. Paris and London are the chief seats of the manufacture, while Cannes, Nice, Nimes, Sicily, and other spots in Southern Europe provide quantities of the choicest flowers and fruits. Bulgaria is noted for its attar of rose, and England holds her own in the matter of lavender and peppermint, which are largely cultivated at Mitcham and Hitchin.