“England expects that every man will do his duty” - Lord Nelson
Inspired by the Battle of Trafalgar (21st October 1805) - a pivotal event which secured Britain’s reputation as a formidable sea power in the early 19th Century, but also saw the loss of one of Her greatest heroes.
Pieces of the oak used in the construction of Nelsons’ Flagship HMS Victory (refitted at Portsmouth in the 1920’s) were given to BeauFort London’s creative director at the battle’s bicentenary in 2005 and the scent of these historical relics and the darkly evocative stories that surround them became the impetus for this fragrance.
Tonnerre uses bold ingredients in extremely high concentrations to conjure a uniquely powerful olfactory experience, with the key notes emphasising aspects of the story of Trafalgar, an event embedded in the British psyche.
Burning wood, gunpowder, cannon smoke, blood and seaspray allude to the brutality and chaos of sea warfare. A penetrating citrus note was used, not only as an allusion to the sailors in the British Navy as ‘Limey’s’, but also to Admiral Nelson’s request for lemonade on his death bed.
A prominent, dark tar note permeates as tar was used to waterproofing the planks of ships, and also to preserve ropes. The brandy note which carries the composition refers to the cask of the spirit which carried Nelson’s body back to Britain for a hero’s funeral.
Perfumer Julie Marlowe was tasked with creating an uncompromisingly bold composition, yet ultimately refined, provocative and unique - a story in a bottle.