The Cyprus Perfumery Theme Park, Pyrgos, Limassol

📷 The historical period covered, at the The Cyprus Perfumery Theme Park, is one of 6000 years and spans the Mesolithic, Neolithic and Chalcolithic ages.

The Cyprus Perfumery Theme Park is a very large scale project that aims to create a space, in which, aside from showcasing the various ancient methods of producing perfume the visitor will be able to experience them first-hand as well. The idea for the park came with the discovery of the most ancient perfume in Pyrgos, Limassol, by the Italian archaeologist Maria Rosaria Belgiorno and the park is based, in big part, on this.

It is divided into four main sub-projects, the first one being a faithful reconstruction of the ancient site of Pyrgos as it was found by the archaeologists. The second is another reconstruction, this time of the ancient perfumery lab as it is believed to have looked and operated by the archaeologists. The third offers the visitor a glimpse into the past as well as the present by showcasing the various ways in which perfume has been produced throughout the ages. The fourth and final one is where we will show the visitors how the different herbs and other raw materials used for the perfumes are produced. The historical period covered is one of 6000 years and spans the Mesolithic, Neolithic and Chalcolithic ages.

The historical period covered is one of 6000 years and spans the Mesolithic, Neolithic and Chalcolithic ages, and aims to educate visitors about the rich history of perfume production as well as the methods used for it.

The Theme Park aims to educate visitors about the rich history of perfume production as well as the methods used for it, and through that help them acquire a deeper understanding and appreciation of the ingenuity of the ancients. It especially aims to educate the younger generation of Cypriots and provide them with a fun and engaging way of coming into contact with their roots and history. The organization responsible for running it is a non-profit organization whose profits will go to the various local communities to be used for further development or to those who are less fortunate and in need of help.

📷 Distilling stills, mixing bowls, funnels and perfume bottles were found almost perfectly preserved at the site.

The Excavations: Cyprus, Home of the Oldest Perfume Bottle in The World

You might have heard that France is the motherland of scents and perfumes, yet recent archaeological excavations revealed the oldest perfume bottle found in the world in the soil of Cyprus. The Italian archaeologists who made the discovery claim that their discovery is at least 4,000 years old, and it contained extracts from pine, coriander, almond, bergamot, anise and parsley. This impressive discovery came not as a surprise to historians specialised in the region. Cyprus has been the most important trading centre of the eastern Mediterranean at least since the dawn of the bronze era.

📷 Distilling stills, mixing bowls, funnels and perfume bottles were found almost perfectly preserved at the site.

Several elements make Pyrgos a case of production and trade. Among them, we can consider the strategic location, the availability of natural resources and the division of roles, results of a cultural revolution born within the Cypriot society at the beginning of the second millennium BC. During this period, the agricultural production was in fact supported by craft activities dedicated to the production of prestige goods for domestic and foreign trade. It is therefore conceivable, in consideration of the historical and archaeological data, that at the time, many settlements of Cyprus had commercial areas like the Pyrgos' one.

📷 Distilling stills, mixing bowls, funnels and perfume bottles were found almost perfectly preserved at the site.

The excavation brought to light workshops producing prestige goods as bronzes, jewellery, fine fabrics, perfumed ointments, pharmaceutical preparations, and cosmetics in an area located at the centre of the settlement. There were all goods in great demand from the Mediterranean market, which found in those products merits of quality that made the island home of wellness and beauty later identified in the native country of Aphrodite goddess of love and eternal youth. In Early Middle Bronze age, we are at the origin of a legend that survived wars, occupations and religions, and still is in charge today when you want to bring to the market a new luxury product, a perfume or a cosmetic that promises miraculous results.

References and further reading material:

M.R.Belgiorno, "Cosmetics", Archaeometry and Aphrodite, 45-93, Nicosia 2017.

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M.R.Belgiorno, "Charm and Cosmetics", The Perfume of Cyprus, 273-311, Nicosia 2017.

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Sources: The Cyprus Perfumery Theme Park, Pyrgos Mavroraki

 

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