From Mesopotamian cultures until today, men, and particularly women, have had a penchant, perhaps a weakness (if not a need) for making themselves look and smell better. But the first question is when and how was the first perfume created? When and where did the habit of using perfumes begin?
Like colours and noises, smells—from the salt of the sea to the wet earth after a rainstorm—already existed in nature when the first humans arose. But there was a moment when man discovered a new aroma, different from everything that was familiar; this was a smell that he could master, because it was in his power to create it. When was this moment? And what was the fragrance?
I like to think that it all can be traced to prehistoric times, to a day when some of those primitive men, who dressed in animal skins, hunted with stone axes and arrows and who spoke and understood each other with grunts, lit a fire to stay warm or to keep away the beasts that could have been lurking around and lit, by pure chance, some branches or tree resins that gave off a pleasant smell, a new aroma, one they had never smelled before.