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The benefits of beeswax candles are well documented. As well as being 100% natural, they are a renewable resource. They are non-toxic and chemical free and are said to improve indoor air quality. And that’s before even mentioning any of the aesthetic bonuses such as cosy lighting and good aromas.
Beeswax candles also have a rich history. The earliest wick candles are credited to Ancient Rome where rolled papyrus was repeatedly dipped in beeswax – similar to the tapered candles of today. Many other civilisations were said to have developed their own versions of the wick candle.
By the Middle Ages beeswax candles were often used in church ceremonies but rarely in the home due to their being quite expensive. Instead most people would burn tallow candles which were significantly cheaper and were obtained by rendering animal fats. Beeswax candles were so commonplace in churches that they were known as ‘church candles’ and it is said that monasteries often had their own beehives. Beeswax candles were also used extensively by court and nobility.
In the Middle Ages, as religious ceremonies became increasingly elaborate, the label ‘wax chandler’ came into use, different to ‘chandlers’ who more often worked with tallow. A wax chandler referred to someone who dealt in wax candles, specifically beeswax. The Worshipful Company of Wax Chandlers is one of the oldest livery companies in the City of London.
The hand-dipped version of the beeswax candle was the one used by the churches back in the day and it wasn’t until the 15th century that moulds were first introduced.
So as we light our beeswax candles in the modern day, there’s plenty to reflect on. Why not check out our range of beeswax candles here - we do both scented and unscented!
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