THE LADY JIMENA ~ Infanta en Flor by Arquiste


(play me)

The thumb of god smudged the Moorish moon across the twilight splendor of the eastern sky, and Spain wept. The very soul of Spain wept for the lady Jimena.

Donna Jimena sat alone and imprisoned in in the cold stone garden of the nunnery waiting for Don Rodrigo’s return from exile. She worked at her needlepoint absently. A small tapestry of the battles of her husband to unite Spain and drive the invaders back to North Africa. Her hand wavered and stopped its fine work and she recalled how when she was just a girl,  she had first loved Rodrigo upon first sight of him in her fathers house all those years ago.

The scent of immortelle blooming on the hills beyond her father’s garden blended in the honey gold noon heat with the orange blossoms all abuzz with bees. She held a small goat in her arms and brushed it to extract the lovely labdanum from its wool. A deep baritone laugh drew her young eyes to the gate where a tall striking man clad in rough leather stood talking to her father. His cerulean blue eyes slid over the flowers and the fountains to find hers and in meeting awakened the girl to womanly desire. In his quick crooked smile she knew him to his core and recognized her destiny.

Now years later and separated from him by civil war and by King Alfonso’s betrayal and treachery, she waited and prayed that once more he would be victorious. He would return with his armies of Christians and Spanish Moors to free her. He would come to take her once again into the safety of his arms. Arms that felt like home to her.  But until that day, the day of the return of her lord, all of Spain wept for the lady Jimena, and her lost love for El Cid.



Infanta en Flor by Arquiste is a lovely romantic perfume created by this wonderful house know for gorgeous niche perfumes each with a great story attached. The inspiration for Infanta en Flor was the border of Spain and France in 1660 and the meeting of King Louis XIV and his bride the Infanta of Spain. But for me it seemed a medieval fragrance and all about Spain. No hint of France at all. Romantic, melancholy, a perfume full of longing and loss but with the promise of reunion breathing life into its soul. It smells to me like what I imagine a 12th century perfume might be like. Simple and elegant and something a lady of the court of Spain might wear.

The perfume opens with clean bright notes of orange water and immortelle flowers. There is a richly smooth leather, Smooth polished and old. Not suede but real, heavy duty expensively worked leather that is rounded out nicely with a sensuous slightly skanky labdanum. This takes what would ordinarily be a soapy clean ordinary floral to an interesting place. Yes it is “Fresh” but not laundry fresh but rather nature fresh of the flesh. It is a liner simple fragrance tha strays true to itself from first to last.

A fine silage that gets attention and lasts well on my skin up to about seven to eight hours. This Infanta is a lady fit for any lord as well, but one with the cojones to sport a floral in a Aqua Di Gio world.



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