I'm off to a doctor's appointment shortly so I can't write a full and proper reply but there are definitely differences between all of the above listed chemicals/notes.
Thujone is merely an isolated chemical, like say linalool (which is present in many many essential oils). Thujone is present in at least all of the following oils:
Cornmint (japanese peppermint) Oil
Parsley Seed Oil
Dalmation Sage Oil
Artemisia Absinthium (grand wormwood) Oil
Cedar Leaf Oil
Blue Yarrow Oil
and I believe it is present in
I've never smelled isolated thujone but looking at the similarities between the above oils, which I've smelled, I'd say it contributes an intensely aromatic green note. Aromatic and biting in a way like pure mint/menthol, but green.
Artemisia absinthium is a very cool, refreshing, green note. It's absolutely beautiful and one of my favorite isolated notes. It is aromatic and refreshing, green, minty, and deep. It does not have the sagey notes that are present in sage (of course
), mugwort, and to a lesser extent cedar leaf. The opening of Yatagan is a pretty good representation, although the isolated oil does not have as much depth as the opening of Yatagan. It's also a bit more aromatic than the opening of Yatagan, but when mixed with other oils, and in the minute quantities that it is typically used in (1% or less of the composition), any edge it has is pleasantly dulled.
Cedar leaf is simultaneously sweet green and bitter, with a biting aromatic edge. Parsley seed is similar but has more depth with an almost rose like note present. Mugwort is kind of sage like, and for some reason calls to mind the smell that you'd arrive at if you mixed marijuana, mint, and sage.
Gotta run, will post more later.