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Cinnamon foliage
Woman selling cinnamon sticks, the bark of the cinnamon plant

Cinnamon is a sweet, aromatic spice that is often used in baking. The cinnamon tree is an evergreen that grows best in a hot, wet, tropical climate, and has long been grown in Sri Lanka, an island south-east of India.[1]

Both true cinnamon (Ceylon cinnamon) and Cassia (Chinese cinnamon), are derived from the dried inner bark of the tree. Cinnamon sticks are made from long pieces of bark that are rolled, pressed, and dried. The spice is often ground into a powder and used for cooking.[2]

Ceylon cinnamon belongs to the laurel family and is widely grown in South America and the West Indies. Cassia (cinnamomum cassia) is grown in China, Indonesia, the Indies, and Central America.

Cinnamon was imported from China to Egypt as early as 2000 BC, and is mentioned in the Bible in Exodus 30:23, where Moses is commanded to use sweet cinnamon and cassia.[3]

Take also for yourself the finest of spices: of flowing myrrh five hundred shekels, and of fragrant cinnamon half as much, two hundred and fifty, and of fragrant cane two hundred and fifty, and of cassia five hundred, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, and of olive oil a hin.

You shall make of these a holy anointing oil, a perfume mixture, the work of a perfumer; it shall be a holy anointing oil.[4][5]


  1. Food Reference - Cinnamon
  2. Culinary Cafe - Cinnamon
  3. Spices in Kerala - Cinnamon History
  4. Bible Gateway
  5. People of Faith - What's So Special About Cinnamon?