Born in 1804, George Sand marked the 19th century and European romanticism in an exceptional manner: a successful writer, she was the friend of many intellectuals of her time and the companion of Musset and Chopin. Her castle in Nohant became the meeting point where European romantic artists met and gathered.
She received visitors in Nohant with great elegance; she used to offer them with pot-pourris and home-made soaps made with plants and flowers that she used to harvest in her perfumed garden.
Her passion for flowers and perfumes can be seen in the numerous letters she wrote. In a letter to Musset who had returned to Paris leaving her behind in Venice, she wrote him to send her some patchouli from the perfumer Leblanc.
She gave many instructions to her perfumers, (in the 19th century, Paris had 500 perfumers-creators who had shops in the capital), correcting endlessly their creations. George Sand was particularly fascinated by patchouli, by its oriental animal notes (ambergris and musk) and by the freshness of bergamot and lemon, aromas from the South of Italy which were so characteristic of romanticism.
By virtue of this information, Nicolas de Barry was able to smell two bottles of G. Sand's perfume; the essences had altered with time but were sufficiently intact to enable them to be identified : patchouli, ambergis, rose…