Diptyque do a decent line in limited editions and this spring’s offering is no exception. Rosa Mundi is named a nice after a nice and gloomy historical tale of ill-fated love and also uses a pun – the fact it smells of roses is really only a minor detail for me after factoring all that in.
[This isn’t Rosamund, it’s actress Maude Fealy as her and I found it here]
Here’s the story. Rosamund Clifford – or Fair Rosamund to her pals – was Henry II’s mistress. When the affair was uncovered she retired to a nunnery where she remained until her death, as a lot of royal mistresses seem to have done. When she died, her shrine became a local shrine – until a visiting bishop banished her remains for the church for being a harlot. Those meddling bishops.
Anyway, the not quite-so true story that Diptyque have ran with is that Rosamund was poisoned by Queen Eleanor and with his heart broken, the kind commanded that Rosamund’s grave be blanketed with Damask roses every year on the anniversary of their meeting. Apparently, her tombstone read: “Here in the tomb lies the rose of the world, not a pure rose; she who used to smell sweet, still smells – but not sweet.” Lol wut?
Myths aside, what does the Rosa Mundi scent smell of? Poison? Deceased harlots? Actually it’s Centifolia and Damask roses and the blend has been carefully composed to recreate the multiple aromas of the flowers as they blossom over time.
Here’s where the pun comes in. Rosa mundi is latin for rose of the world. Her name was Rosamund. See?
Anyway, last season I bought the limited edition Rose Eros duo and, as with everything Dipytque, they smell increds and after burning for about five minutes your entire house is flooded with the stuff so they last for ages too. Available at all the usual Diptyque stockists for the princely sum of £40 – that’s a year’s worth of delicious smell, and you get a historical tale to recount to boot.