Arabian Myrrhis a hard, dark reddish-brown tree resin obtained from a species of the Commiphora genus. Though botanically considered the same species, we differentiate between C. myrrha as coming from Arabia and C. molmol coming from Africa. Its use in incense has been mentioned since the dawn of recorded history. The resin produces a quite unique and rather unusual aroma when smoldered upon a hot charcoal. The resin at first releases the fragrant essential oils during the beginning of the burn cycle, only to blacken towards the end leaving a somewhat unpleasant latex-like scent. We generally have found that the best way to use this superior quality Myrrh resins is to heat it indirectly. While the aroma is very similar to Molmol and Superior Myrrhor, the quality is unmistakeably superior. Arabian Myrrh has a higher concentration of essential oils, thus providing a spicier and richer experience. Myrrh has long been associated with death rituals such as its use in embalming and numerous Egyptian incense blends, as a funerary incense in Roman times, and as a symbolic gift the the baby Jesus. Myrrh was also once used to preserve wine and still finds use even today in medical practice for skin wounds, dental hygiene and as a fungicide. Myrrh is associated with the Water element and the Moon is thought to be its celestial body.
Extracts from the leaves are useful for their insect repellent properties. The presence of Germacrene-D along with other organic hydrocarbons in the leaves is thought to contribute to the insecticidal properties of various members of the Burseraceae family, including Bursera copallifera, B. excelsa, B. fagaroides, B. graveolens, Boswellia sacra, Commiphora holtziana and C. myrrha. In recent studies, this chemical has been found to be repellent to not only herbivores (beetles), but also mosquitoes, aphids and ticks.
Commiphora myrrha is native to Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Oman, and Yemen.
African Myrrh, Common Myrrh, Dhidin, Didin (Somalia), Gum Myrrh, Herabol Myrrh, Mirra (Italian/Spanish), Molmol (Somalia), Myrrhe (French/German), Somali Myrrhor
NOTE: The research on Commiphora myrrha is ongoing. We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information on our products. Please expect the above information to be revised as more information becomes available. If you have further information about this species or if you wish to submit a correction to this page, please feel free to contact us here
As of 2016, we have decided to majorly simplify the taxonomic structures of the species collection. Due to the numerous systems available, and many species being disputed and in a state of flux, we feel that most of our audience will be better served with a easier to understand condensed listing.
• Noge, K. and J. X. Becerra. Germacrene D, A Common Sesquiterpene in the Genus Bursera (Burseraceae). Published in Molecules, 2009, 14, 5289-5297. Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2015, available from http://www.mdpi.com/1420-3049/14/12/5289. Accessed on 27 Aug 2015.