Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

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Boudicca
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Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by Boudicca »

Aspasia had been a hetaera, or high toned courtesan. She was well educated, talented, personable and captured the heart of that most well known of Greeks, Pericles. Honestly, not a lot of known about her, after all she lived long ago. She was a great conversationalist and her arguments on a variety of philosophical subjects were so sage that Plato remarked on how well constructed they are. She had a son with Pericles, was accused of leading the citizens of Athens astray (she was heartily defended by Pericles), and lived to see Pericles die of plague in 429 b.c.e. and have another lover and another child.

I start out with the beautiful scent of osmanthus (the sweet olive) which is at once just pretty and animalic in this context), followed up with ambergris (it's a simulation, don't worry), and rounded out with a very dry and beautiful amber. I was trying to make something here which would smell the way that ancient Greeks would like to smell and I think I managed to convince myself this is it.
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by Minh Scent »

Oh, I could kiss you, Fabienne! Finally an osmanthus perfume where I am smelling osmanthus!!! I had some pause over the aquatic labeling, this is not aquatic on me. On my skin the ambergris and amber are definitely background players and I get the truest smell of the flower, very close to the ones blooming on the bush in my yard. There is no apricot hiding the flower, which sometimes happens with osmanthus blends. This is very, very light perfume. Right off the truck, so comments with grain of salt.
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by Atropos »

Minh Scent wrote:Oh, I could kiss you, Fabienne! Finally an osmanthus perfume where I am smelling osmanthus!!! I had some pause over the aquatic labeling, this is not aquatic on me. On my skin the ambergris and amber are definitely background players and I get the truest smell of the flower, very close to the ones blooming on the bush in my yard. There is no apricot hiding the flower, which sometimes happens with osmanthus blends. This is very, very light perfume. Right off the truck, so comments with grain of salt.
Your review is lovely!
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by marisaviola »

While smelling Aspasia in the decant vial, I smell a fresh osmanthus note blended with something almost woody and eau de cologne dry. The cologne aspect reminds me a bit of Eau d'Hadrien or Eau du Sud by Annick Goutal without the citrus. Wet on my skin, the scent is very delicate as Minh Scent mentioned. I am not picking up amber and if ambergris it smells like the very refined white type that has cured in the sun for many years, not the more raw and smoky type. Dry on my skin, Aspasia is very subtle and keeps the osmanthus note which reminds me a bit of the note found in Possets A Haiku--Fangping Gauze Screen. I am not experienced with real-life osmanthus flower or sweet olive. The only other time I have experienced a similar flower note is in the old New Orleans perfumery Hove Parfumeur's Tea Olive perfume, which I believe is related to Osmanthus. In Tea Olive I experienced it as a bit more spicy and gardenia-like than the osmanthus in Aspasia. As it dries down Aspasia is like a soliflore to me of a very delicate blossom that has slight apricot and fresh aspects without being in the least fruity.
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by Atropos »

marisaviola wrote:While smelling Aspasia in the decant vial, I smell a fresh osmanthus note blended with something almost woody and eau de cologne dry. The cologne aspect reminds me a bit of Eau d'Hadrien or Eau du Sud by Annick Goutal without the citrus. Wet on my skin, the scent is very delicate as Minh Scent mentioned. I am not picking up amber and if ambergris it smells like the very refined white type that has cured in the sun for many years, not the more raw and smoky type. Dry on my skin, Aspasia is very subtle and keeps the osmanthus note which reminds me a bit of the note found in Possets A Haiku--Fangping Gauze Screen. I am not experienced with real-life osmanthus flower or sweet olive. The only other time I have experienced a similar flower note is in the old New Orleans perfumery Hove Parfumeur's Tea Olive perfume, which I believe is related to Osmanthus. In Tea Olive I experienced it as a bit more spicy and gardenia-like than the osmanthus in Aspasia. As it dries down Aspasia is like a soliflore to me of a very delicate blossom that has slight apricot and fresh aspects without being in the least fruity.

Another fabulous review!
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by Minh Scent »

After more than a month of rest, I have taken out Aspasia again. I am delighted that it remains a true osmanthus scent, delicate and so natural smelling. In fact, after smearing my arm with it, I marched outside to my blooming plant and cannot discern a difference. I only get the slightest hint of what Marisaviola eloquently described in the initial application. The amber and ambergris are solely supporting players, barely noticeable to me. Although it smells single note, it smells nothing like osmanthus essential oil, which has a woody quality to it. It has more of a Guerlein Aqua Allegora vibe to me. Aspasia is a beautiful! Satisfying osmanthus perfume-found!

(I felt I needed to review this again because I literally opened the bottle as soon as the envelope arrived!)
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by fabienne »

So many essential oils smell like the "subject" was subjected to some form of torture. It was. Usually it's boiled, dried, distilled, reconstituted, enfleuraged...you get the picture. Many times the ending thing does not smell at all like the beginning thing. I think the more aromatic things (like lavender) have a better chance of retaining their character than a lot of the more delicate florals.
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by marisaviola »

I thought it worth revisiting Aspasia after reading Minh Scent's review, as I also wrote my review when it literally had just arrived in the mail. For me also it's been a month of letting it sit, now.

Wet in the vial, I smell the osmanthus, and still get a bit of a soft woody background note and a dry element that is almost cologne-like to me, but now reminds me a bit of a fresh ginger type note. I still do not get amber or ambergris.

On my skin, this quickly turns into a soliflore fragrance. It is perhaps a bit stronger now than when I first got it, and lingers longer on my skin, but still is very delicate and subtle. This still to me does not smell like the tea olive fragrance from New Orleans that I have, but I have never had access to the fresh flowers like Minh Scent does. In memory, this reminds me a bit of a Keiko Mecheri's Osmanthus fragrance.
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by Atropos »

fabienne wrote:So many essential oils smell like the "subject" was subjected to some form of torture. It was. Usually it's boiled, dried, distilled, reconstituted, enfleuraged...you get the picture. Many times the ending thing does not smell at all like the beginning thing. I think the more aromatic things (like lavender) have a better chance of retaining their character than a lot of the more delicate florals.
And that makes it even more amazing that you make such lovely creations that smell like their original. You are a true artist.
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Re: Aspasia, Mistress of Pericles

Post by warriortwo »

I did not have a reference point for osmanthus when I ordered this. When I first tried it, it seemed perfumy. The same day I tried it, I was on an interview panel and the woman sitting next to me most definitely wore a perfume with osmanthus in it, too. Since she is more of a "lady", and I am more tomboyish and earthy, I associated this with an elegance I don't possess. So I put it away.

I did keep thinking it was pretty, though, and yesterday I took it out again. It has developed a fascinating quality to it that I can best describe as true skin-scent. Like someone's bed pillow smells, that scent that clean hair leaves over time on the pillowcase. When I wash it off (because I'm always testing multiple scents at a time), it loses the floral altogether but I can still smell that delicious skin-like scent if I put my nose right up to my wrist. This is going to be a scent I have to try over and over again, to really get a sense of how it will work for me.
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