Myrrh is a pungent plant resin that has been described as having a spicy or balsamic fragrance. It comes from Commiphora trees primarily grown in the Arabian peninsula and northeast Africa. The online edition of the newspaper “Juneau Empire” notes that in biblical times, myrrh and the similarly precious frankincense resin were more valuable than gold. Today, it is available as a fragrant oil and in perfumes.
Incense has been used by various religions for more than 3,000 years. Myrrh was an important trade good as an incense and a fragrant oil throughout ancient Mediterranean cultures. The website Biblefragrances.com notes that myrrh is the substance referred to most often in the Bible, especially being praised in the “Song of Songs.”
Today, it is possible to purchase pure myrrh oil in shops and online. It is also availble in a number of modern perfumes, such as the sweet Mirra by i Profumi di Firenze, the aromatically shrubby L’Eau Trois by Diptyque, the gingery yet dominantly resinous Myrrhae EdT by L’Erbolario and Gucci’s Pour Homme II Eau de Toilette, which combines myrrh with a wide variety of ingredients, including bergamot and cinnamon.
When purchasing a myrrh perfume, consider whether you prefer a sweet or pungent blend. Also consider the strength of the fragrance, as sometimes a little bit goes a long way.
References and ResourcesJuneau Empire: Frankincense and Myrrh More Than Just Historic Scents
Bible Fragrances: Myrrh
Now Smell This: Mirra by i Profumi di Firenze—Fragrance Review
Scentiments: Gucci Fragrances Perfume and Cologne—The Beginning
Perfume Smellin' Things: Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh—The Gifts of the Magi in Perfumery