Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online

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(4,798 words)

From an early period, aromatic substances prepared in a variety of ways have played important roles in many forms of Hindu worship. Even nowadays incense (dhūpa), perfumes of various sorts, and garlands (mālās) remain common offerings and adornments in pūjā rites. Certain materials, such as sandalwood, have long been considered precious or exotic commodities. Over the centuries, from around the start…

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McHugh, James, “Smell”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Editor-in-Chief Associate Editors Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 21 October 2021 <>
First published online: 2018

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