Virgilio 
Diptyque (1990)

Average Rating:  18 User Reviews

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Virgilio by Diptyque

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About Virgilio by Diptyque

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Diptyque
Fragrance House

Green scent with basil and other herbs.

Fragrance notes.

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Reviews of Virgilio by Diptyque

There are 18 reviews of Virgilio by Diptyque.


Virgilio seems to be a forgotten beauty from Diptyque that quietly ceased production several years ago. Released in 1990, it seems to be one of the last from the era of Diptyque that focused on naturalistic and minimalistic creations centered around realist ambience, whether it be spices, herbs, or florals. The golden years of Diptyque, as it were (L'Eau Trois, L'Autre, L'Ombre Dans L'eau, Eau Lente and the like).

It opens with this radiant, somewhat minty herbal, that immediately comes to mind the sweet basil essential oil and absolute that I have in my perfumer's organ; concentrated green sweetness that you can almost taste. I've always had a fondness for it, but have only found basil as more of a supporting note in fragrances. Here, however, it takes center stage, at least in the opening, but then is accompanied by crunchy, woody, herbaceous caraway, which harmonizes quite beautifully with the basil. The two sing unadorned by spiky, voluminous synthetics that are ubiquitous in more recent fragrances. There is almost an aromatherapeutic quality to Virgilio that mellows me while wearing it.

This simmers on the skin for a few hours until it subsides in a bed of soft vetiver and cedar, which makes for a brilliant progression in the dry down, as these two woody notes really extend the effect of the basil and caraway almost seamlessly. Somehow, what is left is a green, woody castile soap effect that is ever so pleasant and soothing. This is classic Diptyque, before the age of woody ambers, Ambroxan, and Iso E Super. How refreshing...

Yet how sad that it apparently wasn't a seller for them, or perhaps it was too expensive to produce. Whatever the case, it is a wonderful, yet bittersweet discovery that continues to put my fragrance exploring journey into perspective.


Fresh green herbs drying in the sun.

I love green scents, which are usually green florals (Givenchy's III, Yves St. Laurent's Y, Givenchy's Ysatis). This is a new take on "green" for my nose, as it deals with herbs, not flowers.

There is the initial anisic note of basil, soon joined by the dry pungency of thyme with a dark note (cardamom?) holding it in place. Rather unique in my olfactory experience of fragrances.

I like it very much and were it not discontinued and tres expensive on top of that, I would consider adding a bottle to my wardrobe.

Very impressive.


Genre: Green

Virgilio breeds either adamant supporters or indignant detractors, with few responses in between. I fall in the former camp, and hold Virgilio alongside Eau Lente as one of my favorites from this house. In fact, while available, Virgilio was one of my favorite green fragrances.

The first thing I notice in Virgilio is a very fresh cut grass note, with just a touch of sharp citrus and some subdued florals. It's a vibrant, verdant opening that evokes a moist early spring breeze. The citrus note grows stronger and sharper as it goes, until it threatens to overwhelm the scent completely. Just before it can, honey, hay, and a minty-sweet basil note move in and blend into a refreshing sweet herbal heart. The heart accord is familiar and evocative to me, but I can't easily pin down the associations. Could it be chervil in a garden? Or perhaps a blend of parsley and tarragon? At any rate, the accord is potent and naturalistic. Once it settles in it continues without much more development, as do so many Diptyque fragrances. When the drydown arrives it presents soft honey and woods that persist for a few hours. This was an icon among green fragrances, and I still lament its demise.


Oh Virgilio, how I spurned you originally! 'Provençal Golden Shower' went my thinking – another entry for the catalogue of revised opinions known as 'A Portrait of the Perfumista as a Young Man'. And now you have been cruelly discontinued!

A diverse herbal bouquet, Virgilio is an audacious blend of mint, basil, rosemary, parsley, tarragon, and thyme, in (approximate) order of decreasing proportions. It is potently urinous at first but quickly becomes a mildly salty, vivid green delight that frolics on the citrus-herbal threshold and is, despite first sniff, eminently wearable. This was a cure for perfume mundanity.


Yikes! The opening is not just herbal green, it is astringent, soapy and a little minty. There is also a freshly earthy indolic quality about it that is suggestive of white florals and I'm rather surprised this aspect was not picked up in more reviews. Thankfully the somewhat abrasive demeanour settles down after 15 minutes to project a clean floral with mildly sweet, herbal-soapy vibes. Nothing spectacular but not bad at all.


I wore it wrong before - I wore it in cooler days: it was still nice but the scent wasn't heated up enough. This time i tried it in warmer days and it worked beautifully with my skin chemistry. It's like... a deep green cloud enveloping, moving with you, and at times I catch a snifff of this wonderful aroma.It doesn't smell necessarily 'clean' or 'fresh'. Rather it is quite a thick herbal mix, very soothing. I adore green and basil and thyme and whatnot.... so i'm happy with Virgilio.

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