Biblichor is the word that describes the particular smell that belongs to old books. Biblichor is a newly created word that combines the Greek words biblio (book) with ichor (the fluid that flows like blood in the veins of the gods), much the way petrichor was created. Like petrichor, biblichor describes a very distinct fragrance that somehow inhabits one’s very soul when they encounter it. To be fair, biblichor is not a scent that everyone loves, and it can be rather misunderstood by those who just don’t get the delight that can be found in the musty, ink and paper and glue mixed with age and sweetness scent that accompanies old tomes. Biblichor is created by the breakdown of chemical compounds and there is an actual sweet and woodsy scent that belongs to old books (thank you science!). Each books has it’s own unique scent, sometimes almond, sometimes vanilla, sometimes coffee or chocolate, sometimes a smokey, sweet mixture of the above, all of them described with the word biblichor.
Heady, soothing, dreamy / the perfume of wondrous things. / Each tome exudes a fragrance / that wends about and clings. / At once exotic and homey / mysterious and known / each book reaches out, caresses / inebriates my soul. / Biblichor, the scent of kings / of empresses / of time. / The stimulating potency / the attar of books defined… ~Ella
As far as I’m concerned biblichor is a very real and very perfect word to describe the long known scent that belongs to old books and bookstores and it adds to the definition of vellichor. It’s perfect. Absolutely perfect!
Namaste ~ Ella
** If there’s a word you’d like to see added to the Word Nerd roster, please feel free to contact me or suggest it in the comments – I love feedback and recommendations!