Today, it is also still an important ingredient in East Asian incense. All of this was perhaps born of the 18th and 19th centuries, when silk traders from China traveling to the Middle East packed silk cloth with dried patchouli to prevent moths from laying eggs in the cloth. This scented the cloth, and spread the popularity of the fragrance throughout the western world. Indeed, this is often considered the reason why Europeans of the era considered patchouli and luxurious scent; Queen Victoria was even said to have used patchouli in her linen chests for similar purposes. In herbal folklore in numerous Asian countries, including Japan and Malaysia, patchouli is considered an antidote for snake venom. In Chinese Medicine, it is also used in treating toothaches, colds, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
Traditions of metaphysical lore hold that Patchouli also contains magical properties, making it potent in reversing spells and the driving away of troublemakers. Some traditions hold that it can also be used in clairvoyance and other forms of divination, as well as spells involving passion, love and sex magic, and even spells designed to acquire money.