Aromatherapy's early beginning dates back 1000's of years but the word aromatherapy was not used until the 20th century. Early civilizations burned aromatics in religious ceremonies to help carry their prayers to their deities. Later they were used for medicinal purposes such as to drive out the evil spirits from sick or ailing individuals.
Egyptians used aromatics and spices when preparing and preserving a body for burial. Egyptian men and women also perfumed themselves and used scents cosmetically. The Greeks learned from the Egyptians and used aromatics to effect cures for their sick. The two men who were credited as the father of Botany and the founder of Pharmacology were both of Greek origin.
Moving closer to today it was a french chemist who while studying plant essences and their properties came up with the term "aromatherapie." We are now beginning to understand the connection between certain smells and how we feel in our day to day lives. How certain smells can transport us back to a fond memory of a particular time and place or to bring a sense of comfort and relaxation in a time of stress.