History of Attars
Attars have been used for thousands of years across civilizations as body fragrances, as well as in cosmic worship and self meditation. The word “attar” is attributed to the ancient Persian word “attar”, “otto” or “ottar”, which mean fragrance, scent or perfume. Believed to be among the oldest in the world, these concentrated scents are skillfully extracted from herbs, flowers and various types of wood. After extraction, they are painstakingly distilled into an oil base, like sandalwood oil.
Across India, the Middle East and Persia, excavations have unearthed large copper dishes which were used for formulating attars. Even ancient religious texts we find multiple references to fragrances and scents which were utilized for both worship and healing. Ascetics who used to meditate in the forest often burned fires to keep themselves warm, after adding herbs and perfumed roots. When these ingredients were discovered by others, they were deployed in making perfume oils or attars.
Slowly, the business of attars assumed gigantic proportions as entire cities became “attar capitals” and attar manufacturing started on a huge scale. Today, you have every conceivable fragrance available in the form of attar. From a few thousands, to a couple of lakhs, attars are available across all price points according to their purity and fragrance.