Our Scents

Aromatherapy was a wide reaching practice that spanned all classes of ancient Egyptian culture. The rich as well as the poor alike enjoyed pleasing scents upon their bodies, and many records we have found are from tombs that provide the recipes of the owner's favorite scent in unguent or oil form. Doctors were well versed in the practices of aromatherapies, with the scent of their external medicine being of utmost importance of the treatment of their patients. In funerary practices, seven sacred unguents were prepared for mummification, all each provide their own unique scent blends. From Cleopatra whom scented the sails of her pleasure barge with the oil of thousands of lilies to the Baker's wife who enjoyed an oil of myrrh on a holiday of Hathor, scents brought joy to the people of ancient Egypt. The gods themselves enjoyed scents of burning incense and the oils and unguents on their sacred statues and temples. Tons of exotic ingredients from frankincense to cinammon to spearmint were offered by the Pharaoh to the temples of the gods for their continued beneficence.

Setjy Netjerw - Scents of the Gods painstakingly researched recipes of these scents and modernly reproduced the scents of ancient Egypt. Using the most current research provided by the organization Per Djeba, who is dedicated to reconstructing ancient Egyptian culture by the latest Egyptological methods, we have recreated these ancient scents, and used them to provide manyproducts all bearing these unique aromas of the gods of ancient Egypt. Check our Products page for a complete information of our fine products

Scents

Kyphi

Known as Kyphi by the ancient Greeks, this ancient incense bears the name of K'apet, which was the oldest word for incense. It's wonderful aroma permeates the mind and soul, relaxing the spirits. Kapet was burned in ancient temples during the evening rituals, to prepare the god for Their slumber. Setjy Netjerw has reconstructed this incense from the ancient recipe found at the Ointment-Workshop of the Temple of Horus in Edfu, Egypt.

K’apet is an incense that has a long history in ancient Egypt. Its earliest mention comes from the Pyramid Texts, where it is listed among offerings that the deceased king would find good in the afterlife. In the medical Papyrus Ebers, a recipe for K’apet appears to cense the home and clothes, and ingested as a treatment of bad breath. The Papyrus Harris I lists the ingredients for K’apet as offerings to various temples by Rameses III. The word for censing or burning incense is ‘k’ap’ hence it can be seen K’apet is one of the oldest incenses created and used by the ancients.

The late first/early second century CE historian Plutarch is most notably a wealth of information on K’apet (called kyphi by his time as a Greek transliteration of K’apet). He reveals the Egyptians ingested kyphi as a cleansing tonic, and its smoke is calming and brought sleep.

“The kyphi emits a sweet breath and a beneficent exhalation by which all is changed, while the body, being moved by the whiff softly and gently acquires a temper that seductively brings on sleep, so that without intoxication it relaxes and loosens the chain-like sorrows and tensions of daily cares. The scent purifies and polishes like a mirror the faculty which is imaginative and receptive to dreams, just like the notes of the lyre which the Pythagoreans used before sleep to charm and heal the emotive and irrational part of the soul. For scent often restores the power of perception when it is failing, while they often obscure and calm it, since the exhalations penetrate the body because of their smooth softness.”

These claims by Plutarch have been thoroughly tested with Per Djeba K’apet, and found to be very accurate.

Plutarch also reveals kyphi was burned in the temples in during the evening rites of temples in Egypt, along with frankincense in the morning and myrrh at midday. This corresponds to a story in the 4th century b.c.e of Petese, prophet of Ra in Heliopolis, who was struck down by the gods. The wife of Petese mixes together frankincense, myrrh, and kyphi; she burns this for Ra who then speaks in the voice of Petese, thus this powerful combination was able to bring the power of speech to her husband.

Setjy Netjerw employs the recipe inscribed in the ointment workshop at the Ptolemaic temple of Horus at Edfu. While there are several different recipes, they have in common being based of wine, honey, raisins from the oasis, with a collection of herbs, spices and resins. There are several things unique to Setjy Netjerw Kyphi, due to the exhaustive research. Many recreations by those claiming to base their kyphi on Edfu will often eliminate ingredients they do not recognize or have found to be readily unavailable. Also the misunderstanding of the wine and raisins ‘from the oasis’ is common. There is also a deeper understanding as to the utilization of wine that is also widely unknown among contemporary preparers.

 

 

Mendesian

This scent came originally from the ancient town of Mendes, known as Djedwt, which became Capitol of Ancient Egypt in the Late Period. The ancient Egyptians simply named their scent after the town, and was thus known as Djedwt. Mendesian perfume was so popular for thousands of years, that it became known simply as 'The Egyptian' by Roman times. Mendesian's popularity stemmed not only from its simple but appealing scent, but the facts that it maintained its potentcy for over a year, its colorless absorption into the skin, and that it does not leave stains on clothing.

Banebdjedwt was the god of Mendes, who was consulted by the Divine Tribunal in the Contendings of Horus and Seth. Ptah, the creator god of Memphis, took the form of Banebdjedwt in his form of virility in the conception of Rameses II. It can be worn for creativity, virility, and a favorable court verdict.

Mendesian is made with traditional oils; grapeseed and sweet almond. The scent is myrrh with cinnamon at the top. Not a simple essential oil blend, this was painstakingly produced using ancient scented oil production methods, in the days before oil production by distilation.

Ingredients

  • Sweet Almond Oil
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Myrrh
  • Cinnamon

 

 

Frankincence

Boswellia Sacra is the botanical name given to the tree that produces the resin senetjer. It was first imported from Syria and Punt, with Pharaohs Hatshepsut, Tuthmose III, Amenhotep II and Rameses III attempting to grow trees to provide a domestic supply. Senetjer was employed as much as honey, with applications in cosmetics, medicine, as well as ritual censing. Burned in purification rituals, it was also the first burned in the morning temple rites. Modern research finds frankincense is psychoactive and is effective in relieving depression and anxiety in mice. Further study found the active ingredient incensole acetate does indeed have neurological effect on the hippocampus, and can effectively treat depressive-like disorders.

 

 

Myrrh

Like Senetjer, Khery is also a widely used resin with similar applications. Khery is censed at the midday temple rites, and a favorite of the goddess Hwt Hr (Hathor) and burned in great quantities at the Festival of the Perfect Embrace, the marriage festival of Hr (Horus) of Behdet and Hwt Hr (Hathor) of Iwnet (Dendera). The tears of this resin are said to be the tears of the ir Hr, the Eye of Horus.