Here's a little factoid I learned while preparing for a radio interview about perfume (airs April 1, 2010 at 7:30 EST/6:30 CST Perpetual Notion program on WORT 89.9
out of Madison). The first known chemist was a woman. A Mesopotamian cuneiform tablet from the second millenium B.C. describes Tapputi,
a perfumer and palace overseer who distilled the essences of flowers and other aromatic materials, filtered them, added water and returned them to the still several times until she got just what she wanted. This is also the first known reference to the process of distillation
and the first recorded still.