It is our duty to protect Greece as Greece is part of our heritage and the cradle of our civilisation, but also the cradle of many of our successful industries such as perfume and cosmetics. The International Perfume Foundation encourages all perfume lovers and the businesses of perfume to support Thom Feeney's initiative on Indiegogo: Greek Bailout Fund.
For a long time, Perfume remained an important source of revenue for Greece. Cargos of wax-sealed vials and vases containing perfume oils were leaving the Peloponnese or Crete destined for Mediterranean ports.
Masters in the Art of creating perfumes, Masters in the Art of Cosmetics, ornament and make-up, Masters of the Art of packaging, the Greeks created the first industry of perfumery during Ancient times.
In Ancient Greece perfumes were not only used as a tributes to gods but also as a sign of their presence. According to Homer, when a divine entity from the Olympus paid a visit to a mortal, they left behind the smell of ragweed. According to the texts by the Roman author Virgil, Venus (Aphrodite) created rose perfume.
Venus wanted to cut a white flower and pricked herself,
covering her with an everlasting purple color
the rose seemed so beautiful that he kissed it…
This is where its smell comes from.
In Ancient Greece's everyday life, perfume was not a neutral thing or simply an aroma but a feminine being. It was used in and for everything; as a life elixir, a nectar, a ragweed.
It gave hope of immortality to Man because the gods were beautiful and immortal.
In order to resemble the gods, Greeks, concerned about their appearance and beauty created the Art of Cosmetics.
The sculptural art reflects this refined lifestyle. Greece was then a country of farmers, breeders, Artisans and a warrior aristocracy.
Due to its geographical location and numerous islands around, Greece, it was a gateway to Minor Asia, Syria and Egypt.
Thanks to its fleet and its ports, traders came from all over the world supplying a large variety of raw materials, oils and perfume ointments.
The Greeks are credited for having added spices to gums and balms and perfumed oils to flowers.
Flowers and plants used for export had to be preserved in order to be transformed. Olive oil, one of the main resources of Greece, was used as an ointment and as an ingredient or absorbent in perfume oils. From a very early time, the Greeks practiced ‘enfleurage’ and the art of creating perfumed oils.
The Greeks buried their dead with their possessions and a terracotta or alabaster vase containing perfume. These objects played the role of intermediary between the world of Man and that of gods, helping the dead to reach the other world.
For the poorer people, alabasters vases were replaced by vials painted onto the coffin. Pliny the Elder, in his Natural history text  , mentions at least 22 kinds of perfumed oils, most of them being extracted from plants naturally growing on the island of Crete: cypress, marjoram, broom, iris, spikenard, rose, myrtle, laurel, crocus, lily, juniper, pine, nut, almond, carnation, poppy, coriander, aniseed, cumin, narcissus, daisy.
In the mythology, the goddess Athena, created the olive tree, a universal symbol of peace was born in Crete. Athena drove her magic spear into the Earth which turned into the first olive tree. Greeks named that place Athens in her honor.
Circa 1450 BC, perfumery was truly an industry controlled by the Masters of the Mycenaean palaces.
During the Mycenaean Period, even taxes were paid in plants.
« jo-oporo, aromo, (dosi ?) Mijo » « these are the terms that were used for the aromatic plants owed by the taxpayers… » 
The decryption of linear writings found on 20% of the 7000 Mycenaean clay tablets of the islands of Aegean Sea showed that a prominent position was given to scented products, ointments, incenses, aromatic wine, perfume oils, spices. Everything listed on these tablets reveal a real accounting of orders and exports.
In Ancient Greece, perfume shops sprawled everywhere and were used as meeting places where the interests of the State were debated and where fashion standards were established…
In Athens, people would say ‘let’s go to perfume’ as we say ‘let’s go to the pub’.
If ragweed was still the exclusivity of the gods, mortals soon saw a wide choice of ‘Myron’ become available.
Incense, myrrh, styrax, sandalwood, musk, amber, costus and camphor married with cinnamon, nutmeg, pepper or ginger, not forgetting vanilla and cardamom. The luxury of perfumes went so far that Solon the Wise criticised this refinement, saying it was effeminate and prohibited its use to the Athenians like Socrates while Lycurgus did the same among the Lacedemonians.
Thanks to the Phoenicians, Cartagena merchants and the major explorers trading in spices and new scents, perfumes were traded via the established Perfume Routes.
Sandalwood, cinnamon, nutmeg, benzoin, musk and civet from India and China as well as ambergris found on the coasts of the Indian Ocean changed the way hygiene was practiced, gave us medicines and a world of scents.
The Greeks were the first to utilise ‘’packaging’’ and ‘’marketing techniques’’.
The alabasters, the oenochoes and the ariballoi were all made of terracotta decorated with trendy themes, perfectly understood by all the populations of the Mediterranean and all refer to the Greek mythology or to major known themes. These vials were presented in various sizes in the same way as bottles are today: from the small inexpensive ariballoi vial containing little perfume to the enormous and expensive ariballoi jar which would today correspond to 1 litre of perfume.
Copyright 1998 Research and Author: Creezy Courtoy, Founder Les Routes du Parfum, Chairman Perfume Foundation. Thank you for your respect.
 "cosmetic" comes from "cosmos" in ancient greek it means « harmony »
 XIII 9-12 XV, 28-38
 GE 602 - Mycenes
 By Alice Kober (1947), Michaël Ventris et John Chadwick (1952)
Thank you for understanding the importance of preserving our World Heritage