The word ‘attar’, ‘ittar’ or ‘othr’ is essentially an Arabic word meaning ‘scent’; believed to have been derived from the Persian word Atr, meaning ‘fragrance’.
A small town Kannauj in Uttar Pradesh (INDIA), once the capital of Emperor Harshavardhana, can be called the Grasse of India is a hub of attar production. The history of attars production start during the Mugal period or even earlier. During Mugal queen Noorjahan, the process for the production of attar from Roses was discovered and developed and the first Attar to be made were RoseandHina.
Classification of Attars :
The Indian attars may be broadly classified into the following types on the basis of their raw materials used.
♦️ Floral Attars: Attars manufactured from single species of flower are coming under this category. These are:
(i) Chameli (Jasminum grandiflorum)
(ii) Gulhina (Lawsoniainermis)
(iii) Gulab (Rosa damascene)
(iv) Kewra (Pandanus odoratissimus)
(v) Motia (Jasminum sambac)
♦️ Herbal and Spicy Attar: Attar manufactured from a combination of floral, herbal & spicy materials are coming under this category. Hina and its various forms like Shamama, Shamam –tul –Amber, Musk Amber, and Musk Hina. This type of attar is distinctly different from single note attars like Gulab (Rose), Chameli (Jasminum grandiflorum) and Kewda (Pandanus odoratissimus), etc which are created simply by distilling the flowers of a particular plant into sandalwood.
Some attars which are neither floral nor herbal and are coming under this category. Attar Mitti falls under this category and is produced by the distillation of baked earth over the base material. Some of the Attars and their source are as under:
Keeping in mind the high cost of Natural Traditional Attar the low cost of Nature Identical Attar can be prepared. Generally, attars are classified based on their effect on the human body. Such as attars that are used in summer include Khus, Kewda Jasmine, Rose, and Mogra. They are cool attars that provide a cooling effect to the body. Warm attars such as Shamama, Musk, Amber, and Kesar (saffron) are used in winters.
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