Ancient Egyptian love lyrics are of inestimable value for their olfactory symbolisms. Attraction, love and lovemaking were all embodied by olfactory metaphors. As a matter of fact, they reveal that the sense of smell was the paramount sensory perception for expressing love. Some of these love poems are so imbued by scents that one could actually “smell the scenes” they describe. These love songs have an enormous potential for yielding unknown facts about the olfactory behaviours and values of the ancient Egyptian society. Love poems together with other genres of texts, such as hymns to deities and myths, e.g. the Birth Legend of Hatshepsut and Amenhotep III, reveal that the sense of smell played a decisive factor in the sexual practices of the ancient Egyptians. Recent medical studies indicate that humans, similarly to animals, seem to use olfactory communication and are even able to produce and perceive certain pheromones; and that pheromones may play a vital role in the behavioural and reproduction biology of humans. The ancient Egyptian texts connected to sexual attraction indicate that the ancient Egyptians seem to have had a better understanding of this subject than the modern medical world. Until recently, modern medicine has considered humans optical beings and underestimated the importance of the human sense of smell in sexuality and reproduction. The world of modern medicine is now slowly realizing, what the ancient Egyptians seems to have known thousands of years ago, that humans are able to receive olfactory cues that affect sexual behaviour. Evidence from ancient Egypt seems to be crucial not only for reconstructing olfactory knowledge and behaviour in this ancient culture, but also for revolutionizing modern science.


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