One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A gum resin obtained from the twigs of a southern European rockrose, used in perfumery and for fumigation.
The rockrose is usually Cistus ladanifer, family Cistaceae
- ‘It's a full-bodied, grown-up, proper ladies' fragrance that's a quiet storm of spices and resins, with notes of amber, patchouli, sandalwood, labdanum and benzoin.’
- ‘The woody hay backnotes were provided by burning a blend I had made that included synthetic deertongue oil, cedarwood and assorted warm notes like cistus labdanum and helichrysium.’
- ‘This is ladanum gum, which the goatherds pluck from their charges.’
- ‘The base is: green, tea, mate, galbanum, labdanum, tree-moss, patchouli, vetiver, aromatic woods, and hints of powder and gentle spices.’
Mid 16th century: via Latin from Greek ladanon, lēdanon, from lēdon ‘mastic’.
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