Adieu Sagesse is the 1925 entry in Jean Patou's olfactory love trilogy. It is the final entry, but, in typical fashion, I will be skipping the logical - and sensible- progression of the first moment of love (Amour-Amour) and the moment when heart wisely hesitates, asking itself, "what do I know?" (Que Sais-Je?), plunging straight into surrender and waving farewell to wisdom.
I mentioned numerous times that I do not like carnation note in perfume. I also reviewed numerous exceptions from this no-carnation rule. Adieu Sagesse is without a doubt my most favorite carnation-heavy perfume. It has none of the powder that I dislike in carnation fragrances and all the creaminess that I adore in them. The creaminess undoubtedly comes from the inclusion of tuberose and opoponax. The base, a heavy-lidded concoction of musk and civet, paints in vividly animalic colors just exactly what happens after one surrenders to desire. That base is so sexy, it should be X-rated. All the languid floral spiciness and the sensual muskiness would have been too heavy for me were it not for the fresh floral accord of orange blossom and lily of the valley that first appears in the top notes and stays throughout the scent's development, like a tender, poignant reminder of the lost...if not innocence than reason.
Adieu Sagesse, bonjour tristesse.
Photo by Patrick Demarchelier