The Egyptians and Aromatherapy

3000 years B.C. found the Egyptians using aromatics for medicinal and cosmetic purposes. They used it to embalm their dead and perfume contributed much to their public and private lives. On great occasions the slave girls used to dance with perfumed cones on their heads. They made medicinal cakes, ointments, pastes as well as pills, powders and purees from a wide selection of trees and plants. In many pyramids large quantities of cosmetic jars have been discovered. Scents such as Frankincense were still discernable from these and there are records of Cedar and Cypress being imported. Plants that were used included aniseed, castor oil, coriander, cumin and garlic to name but a few. In wall paintings that have been discovered it is evident that by the 3rd century BC the Egyptians had a primitive form of distillation. Until a few hundred years before the birth of Christ the Egyptian perfume industry was the finest in the whole of the Middle East.