History of Essential Oils

Third Day of Creation
Essential oils were given to us on the third day of creation for our well being.

7000 BC to 4000 BC 
Anthropologists find evidence of fragrant plants being combined with fatty oils of olive and sesame to create Neolithic ointments. 

3000 - 2000 BC 
Egyptian records indicate that they are importing large quantities of myrrh.

The Egyptian God Nefertem is depicted in hieroglyphs as healing through the power of plants and flowers. 

An Indus Valley terra-cotta apparatus, dated to 3,000 BC, is believed to be the first known primitive still that may have been used for distilling essential oils from plants. (Discovered by an archeological expedition led by Dr. Paolo Rovesti in 1975.)

1333 -1323 BC 
King Tutankhamen ruled Egypt and when his tomb was discovered in November, 1922, (3,000 years later) they found alabaster (calcite) jars sealed in fat and containing resinous materials, including spices and frankincense oils.

100 BC 
Rome reportedly consumed 2,800 tons of imported frankincense and 500 tons of myrrh per year. Romans referred to their sweethearts as "My myrrh" and "my cinnamon."

50 BC
1st century AD Roman historian, Pliny -- author of the 1st century AD Natural History, mentions 32 recipes prepared from rose oil, 21 from lily, 17 from violet, and 25 from pennyroyal. 

The New Testament is filled with hundreds of references to oil, including frankincense and myrrh brought to the Christ child. 

The Greek work Christos, Christ, means "anointed." 

Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord -- James 5:14

1400 AD 
During this time of the great plague, known as the Black Death, the king learned that robbers were stripping the dead of their jewelry and belongings, the king had the robbers arrested and offered to spare their lives if they would divulge the secret of how they stayed well. The robbers were perfumers and spice traders by profession, and they told the king they had used essential oils of clove, cinnamon, lemon, eucalyptus, and rosemary rubbed all over their bodies and put on masks for breathing. 

1910-1940 
In July, 1910, Dr. Rene Maurice Gattefosse, a French chemist, rediscovered the therapeutic value of essential oils in his family's perfumery business laboratory when he burned his arm quite severely and stuck his arm in a vat of lavender essential oil thinking it was water. Gattefosse also shared his studies with Jean Valnet, a medical doctor practicing in Paris. 

1940-1970 
Dr. Jean Valnet (MD) joined the French Army in World War II. Dr. Valnet  used essential oils. 

1973
Wagner and Sprinkmeyer demonstrated an essential oil mix to have broad activity.

"Dr. Taylor of the University of Austin, Texas has observed that essential oils present more new compounds than the chemists of the whole world could analyze in a thousand years. We now know that they are mixtures of many powerful chemical constituents." 
(Valnet, 1980)

What is understood is this: Because of their unique chemical structure, essential oils are able to penetrate the cell membrane of human cells, just as they do the cells of plants, carrying vital nutrients inside. Once inside the cell, "Essential oils promote natural healing by stimulating and reinforcing the body's own mechanisms.  
(Wildwood, 1991)

"What do the oils do? First of all they are transporters; they transport products to the cells of our body. Secondly, they contain ATP, which serves as the power source of the cells--the fuel. Essential oils normalize the viscosity of the blood, and facilitate the delivery of vital nutrients. Others  release liver toxins, clean the gall bladder, and stimulate the secretion of gastric juices, while even others work to improve nerve impulses and synaptic connections." 
(Friedmann, 1995)


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