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The mighty pomegranate

The mighty pomegranate

A brief history of the pomegranate: from fertility symbol to perfume ingredient.

The pomegranate is a fruit heavily laced in symbolic history and celebrated to this day for its many nutritious and medicinal properties, discover its role throughout history and cultures across the world.

In Ancient Rome

The genus name given to pomegranates (Punica) came from the Roman name for Carthage, an ancient city in Northern Africa. Why? Because the Romans mistakenly assumed pomegranates came from Africa.

In fact, pomegranates have a native range from North East Turkey to Afghanistan. The pomegranate fruit was also given a classical Latin name, Malum granatum, meaning “seedy apple”.

Pomegranate were a symbol of life, fertility and death in Ancient Rome, and newlywed women wore crowns woven from pomegranate leaves, and the juice of pomegranates was used to cure infertility.

They feature prominently featured in the myth of Pluto and Persephone, the inspiration behind our two new perfumes. Pluto, god of the underworld, used pomegranate seeds to trick Persephone into returning to the underworld for a few months of every year.

In other cultures

In Greek mythology, the pomegranate was known as the ‘fruit of the dead’ as it was said to have arisen from the blood of Adonis.

In the Quran, pomegranates grow in the Garden of Paradise and are referred to on multiple occasions as God’s good creations.

The pomegranate is also said to be found in the Garden of Eden according to Ancient Iranian Christianity and was believed to be the real forbidden fruit rather than the apple.

During the non-Christian Iranian tradition, Yalda Night, people come together on winter solstice and eat pomegranate fruit to celebrate the victory of light over darkness.

Medicinal powers of pomegranate

The fruit, flowers, bark, roots and leaves of pomegranates contain micronutrients, such as polyphenols, that can be used to treat a number of diseases and conditions. In fact they can help ward off many serious diseases.

Ancient cultures understood the health benefits of pomegranates and used it in remedies for digestive disorders, skin disorders, and intestinal parasites, to name a few.

Modern day research has revealed that pomegranates might contribute towards preventing serious conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Its powerful anti-oxidant properties secure a top ranking place in the superfood lists lauded today.

Six little seeds

The myth of Pluto and Persephone was the inspiration behind our two new perfumes: Patchouli of the Underworld and Persephone’s Patchouli.

This delightful woody amber by Christian Provenzano enters with a fresh and elegant cardamom, lightly laced with plum and 6 pomegranate seeds, before opening into a heart of Egyptian jasmine, a fresh, aromatic, clean patchouli and a tint of rose. The light woods of sandalwood and cedar combined with a light musk and amber notes make this a light, sensuous and very versatile scent.

The scent of pomegranate is subtle and distinct, slight green powdery tones underpin the sweet and sharp slightly wine like aroma of the seeds.