Bible Fragrances - Labdanum

Hebrew:lot, from a semitic root meaning "resinous herb".
Assyrian: ladunu.
Arab: ladhan.
Greek: ledanon.
Latin: ladanum or labdanum.
Genesis 37,25 and 43,11

A highly pungent gum-resin, secreted by the lower part of the leaves of the Cistus Creticus, a small bush with hardy and pink flower, contrasting leaves which thrives in dry, sunny woods in Mediterranean regions.

Herodotus and Pliny report that labdanum was collected by combing the beards of goats, which were impregnated with the substance.

Another technique, in use as late as the 18th century, consisted of brushing young cistus bushes with a kind of whip, consisting of leather thongs which, once covered with resin, were scraped.

The Ishmaelite caravan coming from Gilead to which Joseph was sold, was transporting labdanum (Genesis 37, 25). Subsequently, Jacob ordered his sons to offer labdanum, along with other local products, to their brother, now an Egyptian dignitary.

"And their father Israel said unto them, If it must be so now, do this; take of the best fruits in the land in your vessels, and carry down the man a present, a little balm, and a little honey, spices, and myrrh, nuts and almonds." Genesis 43, 11

Its aroma is pleasant, sweet, herbaceous and balsamic. Its animal-like odor is reminiscent of ambergris and is used in perfumery for its fixative properties.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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