Thieves Oil - The History, The Blend & The Benefits

by Carol Barrett March 24, 2020

Thieves Oil - The History, The Blend & The Benefits

The Historic Folklore of Thieves Oil

According to the long-told historic tale…. The use of thieves oil dates alllll the way back to the year 1413.  The time of the infamous Bubonic Plague (aka The Black Death) that devastated a large portion of France.  The Black Death spread like wild-fire amongst the citizens, and the doctors alike.  It seemed impossible to be in the vicinity without contracting it, and at the time, the sickness did mean ultimate demise.

During this time, however, four thieves were captured and charged for stealing from the sick and dying.  The thieves never contracted the plague, despite the close contact with the Black-Death victims.

At this time, the crime these four men committed was punishable by burning alive.  The judge was so intrigued by how these men had stayed immune to this terrible disease that he told them if they shared their secret, he would spare them of this punishment.

The Thieves told the judge their secret: they were perfume & spice merchants who were unemployed due to the closure of the seaports and the devastation of the plague.  They had prepared an essential oil recipe that, when applied to their hands, ears, temples, feet & a mask over their mouths, kept them safe from infection.  The judge stayed true to his word.  The men were not burned alive, but instead, they were hanged for their crimes.

From then on, the doctors who treated the Black Death victims put the herbal infusion on their hands, ears, temples & feet and wore beak-like masks stuffed with cloths containing this unique blend.  The beak is how doctors got the long-lasting nickname “quack.” You may recognize this somewhat terrifying uniform as a scary Hallowe’en costume worn today.   Exactly the way you’d want your doctor to dress, right? AH!

Benefits & Uses

Traditional Thieves Oil can be used for more than just the Bubonic Plague due to its now well-known anti-bacterial, anti-fungal & anti-viral properties!

  • Add a few drops to water & use it as a hand sanitizer!
  • Diffuse into the air to clear phlegm and congested airways
  • Mix with a carrier oil such as jojoba oil and apply topically to relieve inflammation
  • Diffuse into the air to kill airborne pathogens 
  • Use diluted on feet, head & hands as a natural fungicide!
  • Dilute in water and use it as a natural bug repellant.


Carol Barrett
Carol Barrett

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