One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An oleoresin obtained from a tropical tree and used in varnishes, ointments, and aromatherapy.
- ‘Because of its drying and conserving properties, Elemi was one of the aromatics used by the ancient Egyptians for embalming their dead.’
- ‘Ethyl alcohol is a comparatively poor solvent for elemi, but some perfumers prefer to extract only once with one or two parts of ethyl alcohol.’
Mid 16th century: perhaps from Arabic al-lāmī.
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