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Armenian scented paper: products of high perfumery, incense, essential oils

On the market since 1885, the famed ARMENIAN SCENTED PAPER is one of the very few "survivors" (and most certainly the oldest) of the so-called Medicinal Papers: the deodorizing and sanitizing papers that were very widespread from the 17th to early 20th century, sold as papers that burned without flame.

The most refined enthusiasts of "medicinal smoke" have always made mention of this prized French product of by-gone days, whose original name is “Papier d'Arménie”.

The history of Armenian scented paper began in the late 19th century, when the Frenchman Auguste Ponsot visited Armenia while traveling in the Ottoman Empire (which at the time was still part of that Empire), where he discovered with amazement that the inhabitants scented and purified their homes by burning a natural resin with a balmy-vanilla scent: Benzoin resin.

Back in France, Ponsot struck upon the idea of circulating this traditional practice in Europe. A decisive factor in achieving his goal turned out to be the inspiration of his pharmacist partner Henri Rivier, who solubilized the oleoresin in the alcohol to produce a tincture of Benzoin, which he then used to soak a suitably treated cellulose base.

Thus, Armenian Scented Paper was crafted using the same procedures intended for any type of medicinal paper, but with a new ingredient: Bonzoin resin (also called Benzoin gum), offering Europeans a chance to take advantage of this natural raw material (used previously in Europe exclusively by perfumers as a good fixative).

As it smolders, Armenian Paper releases the lasting and pleasant sweet balsamy odour it gets from its main ingredient, natural Benzoin oleoresin, which also has remarkable antiseptic properties due to its high content of benzoic acid (approximately 25%).

Already used for centuries in the East to treat asthma and coughs and also as a digestive, a healer, and a disinfectant, Benzoin is highly sought-after and prized, above all for the esoteric properties that are still attributed to it today: its purifying smoke is said to effectively chase any type of adversity or negativity out of any type of environment.

Armenian scented paper is a truly ecologicic product. The special absorbent sheets used to make it are certified by the Forest Steward Council, an independent international organization that works on a global level to promote responsible management of forest resources.

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