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Thuya Wood Morocco
moroccan thuya wood boxes
Thuya Burl is an exotic wood that the Greeks named thuya, meaning sacrifice, because they used an oil distilled from it as incense in their religious ceremonies. Some churches still use it and as sandarac oil it is valued for medicinal uses. The burls are as beautiful as they are fragrant and the Greeks and Romans vied with each other over furniture made from them. Thuya trees, along with cedars and oaks, once covered the Atlas Mountains of Algeria and Morocco, but because of over cutting, large areas have been treeless for hundreds of years. Thuya burl is fairly firm and dense with a high oil content, but tends to be brittle. Its color varies from a rich, lustrous golden brown to nearly black. The eyes, perfectly round, are scattered about in some burls like the figure in bird’s-eye maple; in others they are grouped as islands. An exquisite wood, today it is used for inlays, small boxes, turnery, and precious objects.