Emperor Nero’s Saffron Bathwater

An extract:

“Saffron was and remains, the most expensive spice in the world. Originating in the Near East, it was used by the Persian as both a flavouring and dye and was later adopted by the Romans. It is claimed that Emperor Nero tinted his bath water with it.

By the 10th century, cultivation had spread to Spain and then to ... England, where the town of 'Saffron' Walden became a centre of production.

The Crocus Sativus blooms in the autumn in warm dry conditions. At the centre of its blue-lilac flowers lie three blood red stigma - the saffron threads when dried. Although now cultivated throughout the Mediterranean, Iran, Kashmir, India and China, it is still extremely expensive.

... a quarter of a million plants, all handpicked, are required to yield a single pound (0.45kg) of saffron."


The East India Company - Book of Spices

ISBN: 978-0-9561221-2-4

An intoxicating journey across the spice world, mixing stories of discovery and adventure with how and why spices are used today. Very readable and beautifully illustrated.

The East India Company - Lifestyle


• A recipe for Spice Perfume

• An antidote to poisoning

• The European arrival in The Spice Islands

• King James I, ruler of nutmeg-producing Puleroon

• Columbus discovers chillies

• Nero's use of saffron in his bathwater

• About frankincense and myrrh

• Which spice was known as 'dizzycorn'

• And much more…
Spice Bazaar
Author: Anthony Wild

• First Published in 1995 by HarperCollins

• ISBN: 978-0-9561221-2-4

• Dimensions: 13.34 * 0.64 * 17.15 cm

• Language: English

• Hardcover

• Pages: 64

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    What other books are available in this East India Company series of books? We have several of these interesting books about our Critical Ingredients in our range, all written by acclaimed author Antony Wild. Currently available: the Book of Spice; the Book of Coffee; and the Book of Chocolate. Unfortunately, the Book of Tea is not currently in print, but watch this space..

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