or, stuff that I dragged out of my head

Location: Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Left Field

I love reading about scents and the sense of smell almost as I love actually smelling things, and the Givaudan website is a fascinating read, particularly if, like me, you don't know a whole lot about modern fragrance chemistry. (The clever folk at Givaudan have created a molecule, called Givescone, and just guess where that name comes from, which has, and I quote, "a complex odour picture, with floral, spicy, fruity, woody and even herbaceous nuances." And that, you understand, is not a perfume, not something composed of a number of essential oils and synthetics to create a scent, but a single molecule. How on Earth do they do that?)

Another molecule they've whipped up is called Freskomenthe--once again, a pretty obvious derivation, a scent which can only be fresh and minty. The scent of this molecule is described as "Fresh, Cool Mint, Agrestic, Woody Aspect".

Agrestic? Really?

Yes, really. It's a word, and it's related--as a little intensive cogitation might suggest, or quick peek at the dictionary will confirm--to "agriculture", from the Latin "ager", "field" (also the source of the name of the Roman general Agricola, who tamed Britain--the name means "farmer"). "Agrestic" means "of fields or the country", which is to say "rural", and so logically an agrestic scent is one which smells of leaves and growing things and hay and perhaps fresh clean earth. Sounds good to me.


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