Thursday, September 12, 2013

Corday- L'Ardente Nuit (Vintage Perfume)

My  bottle of L'Ardente Nuit by Corday came from an estate sale. It was hidden, dusty and unused,  behind a bunch of the usual suspects in such places: a mostly empty Shalimar eau de cologne, a bunch of Avon miniatures, Revlon Charlie, and next to some other rare and fabulous find: a sealed bottle of L'Heure Bleue, and a half full Secret de Suzanne Perfume. It was a good hunting day, no doubt about it.

Corday is mostly remembered today for Toujours Moi, a 1924 perfume that stayed in production for decades. L'Ardente Nuit has been lost over time, as was the cool promotional cooperation between Corday and composer Harry Revel who was inspired by a woman wearing Toujours Moi and wrote six pieces of music to go with Corday perfumes, one of them being  L'Ardente Nuit (1930ish).

The juice in my L'Ardent Nuit is all base notes at this point. No funky aromas of dead citrus or stale aldehydes, so I'm assuming that neither was in the original formula. I smell spice, cinnamon and maybe some clove that thicken into an animalic oriental base. This isn't Shalimar and not quite sweet, but I suspect a good dose of tonka bean, and some good and funky musk. On a hot day I swear there's some civet, but it might be my skin doing its thing. Actually, I'm wearing  L'Ardente Nuit again tonight and I can still smell civet under the thick and rich oriental base.

Corday  L'Ardente Nuit was a beautiful perfume. It was womanly (though I guess that a modern nose would find it appropriate for all) and sexy in that opulent yet slightly dirty style of yore. If you have a chance to get or at least sniff a bottle- do it. These long lost perfumes are a lot of fun.

Images from various online auctions.

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