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Online Reference For Body, Mind & Spirit

Term: Aromatherapy

DEFINITION:
The use of the scents of plants, primarily derived from their volatile oils including essential oils, to produce changes in body, mind, and/or spirit. Although experimentation in this area has existed for thousands of years, including the use of incense in magical rituals and scents for healing, it was a French chemist, René-Maurice Gattefossé, who coined the term in 1928. He had become interested in the use of essential oils for healing after he severely burned his arm and plunged it into the nearest liquid he could find, a large container of lavender essential oil. To his surprise, his arm healed quickly and there was no scar. It was an Englishman, Robert B. Tisserand, who may be credited with the modern interest in the subject with his publication of The Art of Aromatherapy in 1977.
AUTHOR:  Donald Michael Kraig
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