Franckincense: traditions rooted in the Sudanese DNA
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Frankincense is an ancient produce which continues to be a major commercial product in Sudan. Incense remain an important commodity in everyday customs and a source of income. It serves as a living link between the past and the present that is rich in religious, social, cultural and economic history. Resins are utilised for medicinal, cultural, religious and funerary practices in ancient and present times. Yet, Sudan’s considerable contribution to trade in aromatics has largely been understudied. This study is based on ethnographic research as well as my own and my family’s experiences. The paper examines the use and trade of incense from the ancient past to the present and contemporary usages. The research demonstrates Sudan’s substantial contribution to incense trade through time. The study suggests that there is a need to re-evaluate the role played by this region. This is a pressing issue owing to threats to archaeological sites caused by mega- development and mineral exploration.
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