Cedar Of Lebanon And Ancient Empires (2/18/2023)


The sarcophagus of Ramses II cut from Cedar of Lebanon. He is one of the greatest of pharaohs and of warriors known in Egyptian history. Cedar of Lebanon was an important part of his burial.

We have begun to experiement with the cedar sawdust to determine how we can get the famous oils that were so highly prized by the Egyptian priests in their preparations of bodies of the pharoahs for burial. The pleasant fragrance coming from the sawdust of our logs confirmed that they are rich in those oils that were so important to the history of the Upper Galilee during the time of the Great Empires of the Ancient World.


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The true Cedar of Lebanon is known as Cedrus libani. The Cedar of Lebanon (Cedrus libani) is a protected tree and there is no essential oil available anywhere except Lebanon in a little apothecary shop and soon from the Phoenician Ship Museum in Montrose, Iowa. Today from the sawdust that came from the milling of the Tyler Aroboretum Cedar of Lebanon we have distilled the first 100 ml of Cedrus libani oil. These supplies are very limited, and it is extremely expensive. We welcome serious inquiries. The pure cedar oil comes from the chips and dust that are associated with the construction of the world’s oldest ship replica that has crossed the Atlantic.

The smell is sweet, fresh, piney cedar, camphorus, slight menthol but creamy full-bodied essential oil. It is like smelling an ancient forest in the bottle. A very distinct smell.


Branded Phoenician Cedar Oil Containers from Upper Galilee.

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Phoenician Cedar Oil Factory in Upper Galilee.


Containers used to store branded Pheonician Cedar Oil.

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Excavating Tel Kedesh

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Excavating Tel Kedesh

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Excavating Tel Kedesh

We are pleased to note that many American scholars in cooperation with the Hebrew University Expedition To Qedesh In The Galilee were involved with the field work and reports from this site. We intend to reach out to these Americans to learn more about how the ancient people of Upper Galilee produced and branded the oils that they extracted from the Cedars of Lebanon.

We want to take advise from these researchers so that we can bring to the world Phoenician Cedar Oil that comes from trees that grew large at the birthplace of America.


Archaeologists and historians have routinely attributed “branded” goods to particular regions and cultural groups, often without rigorous analysis. Phoenician cedar oil is perhaps one of the best-known examples from antiquity. Hellenistic Tel Kedesh in the Upper Galilee region of the Levant is particularly relevant for these discussions by virtue of its strategic role as a border settlement in Phoenicia during one of the most dynamic periods in ancient history. As a concise contribution to these discussions, we present here an interdisciplinary analysis of amphoriskoi found with ca. 2,000 impressed sealings from the archive complex of the Persian-Hellenistic Administrative Building. While the building was constructed under the Achaemenids and occupied in both the Ptolemaic and Seleucid eras, the archive was in use only under the Seleucids in the first half of the of the 2nd century b.c.e. Blending organic residue analysis with archaeological and textual data has allowed us to identify with certainty one of the value-added goods most closely attached to ancient Phoenicia, true cedar oil from Cedrus libani. This discovery not only empirically verifies this well-known association for the first time, but also provides a rich context in which to test our assumptions about culturally-branded goods, the role they played in participant societies, and the mechanisms and systems in place that facilitated their production, use, and export.

Cedar of Lebanon Slab Stack

Cedars of Lebanon Cut Slabs at the Phoenicia Ship Museum in Montrose, Iowa.

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Loading Cedar of Lebanon Logs at the Tyler Arboretum January 2023.


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