• Medicine
  • Spirituality
  • Astronomy
  • Sociology
  • Technology
  • History
  • Open Access
  • News

The History Of Cannabis - From Ancient Times To The New World

We can see evidence of the cannabis plant's relevance in the evolution of societies all around the world throughout history adding to the untold history of cannabis. The cannabis plant has been connected with religions, migration, colonization, and political powers all over the world, from China to India, Africa to Latin America, and Europe to North America, generating a rich history of cannabis.

Cannabis L. is a genus with several closely related species. Hemp and cannabis are both members of the Cannabis sativa subspecies. Both plants, however, have developed to be remarkably distinct. Industrial hemp contains less than 1% THC and has a wide range of practical applications (thus the term "industrial"), whereas cannabis or marijuana is its psychotropic relative, with THC concentrations ranging from 13% to 30%. The substance THC, a cannabinoid present in the sticky resin of female cannabis plants, is responsible for the psychoactivity associated with cannabis. The therapeutic chemicals of the plant are contained in this resin; until recently, the most well-known cannabinoid was THC, which was replaced by CBD.

What Is THC?

Tetrahydrocannabinol is a psychotropic chemical found in the cannabis plant's resin glands. THC binds to cannabinoid receptors in the brain, which are concentrated in areas related with thinking, memory, pleasure, coordination, and time perception, according to the National Institutes of Health. Cannabis' "high'' can cause a number of symptoms, including altered perceptions of time and space, increased appetite, reduced short-term memory, feelings of happiness, and rare drowsiness. THC has shown promise in low dosages for its potential to relieve pain and muscle spasms, promote appetite, and assist lessen nausea, all while maintaining a safety profile that pharmaceuticals cannot match.

Each of these impacts varies significantly depending on who uses it, their age, how much they use it, how they use it, and how often they use it.

A black and white picture of a man planting cannabis and another man using cannabis leaf on the back of another man
A black and white picture of a man planting cannabis and another man using cannabis leaf on the back of another man

The Ancient Origins Of Medicinal Cannabis

The first human encounter with cannabis is thought to have occurred in Central Asia around 12,000 years ago. This was the Neolithic Period, a period marked by a major transformation in human civilization and survival: the birth of agriculture. Agriculture (producing crops) that is sustainable is a relatively recent development of contemporary human civilization, dating back only 10,000 years.

Humans have used every aspect of the cannabis plant throughout history. The roots, leaves, and petals were used medicinally and spiritually, while the seeds provided necessary fatty acids and proteins as sustenance. Cannabis is one of the world's oldest cultivated crops, capable of growing almost anyplace (some could even claim it grows like a weed).

Cannabis had made its way to India by 2,000 BCE, when it was originally accepted by both Buddhist and Hindu religions. Its use grew from its spiritual beginnings to include diseases like diarrhea and fever. Cannabis had spread to Persia, Greece, Germany, and France by 1,500 BCE, and the Middle Eastern Assyrians were utilizing it in religious rites by 900 BCE. Cannabis cultivation in Europe is thought to have begun around 800 BCE in Germany. Russia was likely an early adopter as well, but the medical qualities of the plants would have been minor in the frigid temperatures, and cannabis would have been used mostly for its fibers.

A bunch of cannabis leaves in the background of a sunset
A bunch of cannabis leaves in the background of a sunset

Cannabis And The New World

Cannabis had become an important part of the European economy by the time the New World was colonized. Hemp's mass manufacturing began with the rise of maritime trade in Italy's powerful port of Venice, where it was turned into some of the world's finest ropes and sails. Other European maritime powers, such as Portugal, Spain, England, and the Netherlands, had significant hemp demand.

On hemp sails, explorers and conquerors arrived on the New World's coasts. Pedro Cuadrado, a conquistador serving Hernando Cortés, is thought to have been the first European to bring hemp seeds to the Western Hemisphere for cultivation. In an effort to minimize their reliance on Russian hemp, the Spanish colony of Chile began cultivating cannabis in 1545. At the time, Russia had a near-monopoly on hemp production.

In 1606 the French botanist and apothecary Louis Hebert, who became Canada's first apothecary, brought cannabis to North America via Nova Scotia. In 1607, the first British colony, Jamestown, Virginia, was created, and they were forced to grow hemp to aid their government to reduce their dependence on Russian hemp back home. Despite the fact that colonists preferred to grow food and tobacco, which sold for higher prices, King James declared agriculture essential in 1611. In 1619, every colony home was required to raise 100 plants, and by 1630, most colonist clothing was made of hemp. Connecticut made hemp cultivation mandatory in 1632, and Massachusetts followed suit shortly after. Farmers were permitted to pay off debts with hemp in 1682, while Massachusetts people were permitted to pay their taxes in hemp in 1735.

The American colonies had mastered spinning and textile production by the time the Revolutionary War began in 1775, and they no longer relied on their colonial powers to sell these products (produced from their own hemp) back to them. They began marketing their wares to France, Britain's primary economic and military adversary.

In The End

Cannabis extracts made their way onto apothecary shelves and into doctors' bags in the late 1800s. Dr. Ethan Russo, Director of Research and Development at the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute, says that historically, cannabis was used for therapeutic purposes primarily in the form of teas, extracts, and tinctures (grains of hemp/hashish resin dissolved in alcohol)—not in smoked form—and that the resin would have contained roughly equal parts THC and CBD at the time.

Recent Articles

  • Stone Age Humans Conducted Surgical Amputation, A New Study Finds Evidence

    Stone Age Humans Conducted Surgical Amputation, A New Study Finds Evidence

    Scientific investigation in Borneo has unearthed the world's first documented instance that stone age humans conducted surgical amputation. This discovery represents a significant achievement in the annals of human prehistory.

  • 180 Tips - Best Website For Football Prediction And Tips

    180 Tips - Best Website For Football Prediction And Tips

    How can you beat the best odds at the most well-known online bookmakers when betting on soccer matches? Today's 180 Tips forecasts from Betwinner360 include a record of winning methods. 180 tips provides in-depth research of more than 50 different football leagues, betting tactics organized by market, and expert predictions for each match.

  • Virgo And Sagittarius Compatibility - Great Conversations

    Virgo And Sagittarius Compatibility - Great Conversations

    Virgo and Sagittarius's compatibility is such that they are attracted to one another right away. They base their first interactions on how well they get along in conversation, which comes naturally to them both. These changeable signs will enjoy every minute of talking to each other to death! They engage in frenzied arguments, lengthy philosophical discussions, and fast banter.

  • Pisces And Aquarius Compatibility - Creative Brilliance

    Pisces And Aquarius Compatibility - Creative Brilliance

    Pisces and Aquarius compatibility is such that these two are masters of manifestation while working together. When Aquarians let go of their rigid views, they become natural alchemists who are capable of creating with their creative brilliance. Because of their more flexible and understanding nature, Pisces may assist them in becoming less stuck and releasing their boundless creative potential.

  • Pisces And Scorpio Compatibility - Best Match For Love

    Pisces And Scorpio Compatibility - Best Match For Love

    Pisces and Scorpio compatibility is that they have an innate knowledge of one another, even though they are frequently mysterious to others. These two are irresistibly attracted to each other because they feel like they understand each other but don't say it out loud. They seem to have a psychic connection because they can easily tune into one another's brains.

  • A Massive 7.6 Earthquake Rocks Papua New Guinea

    A Massive 7.6 Earthquake Rocks Papua New Guinea

    On Sunday, a massive 7.6 earthquake rocks Papua New Guinea, causing landslides, cracking roads, and damaging houses. It is currently unknown how extensive the damage is; however, there is debris scattered over the highways and fissures popping up in the roads. According to the United States Geological Survey, the epicenter of the earthquake was located at a depth of 90 kilometers, or around 56 miles, and was close to the town of Kainantu, which has a population of approximately 8,500 people.

  • Most Frequent Angel Numbers You Keep Seeing Is Luck Or Unlucky

    Most Frequent Angel Numbers You Keep Seeing Is Luck Or Unlucky

    The most frequent angel numbers you keep seeing are distinct from other forms of esoterica in that they have no connection to the date that you were born. In numerology, every number has a meaning. Nevertheless, certain number sequences are more prevalent than others. Because all of us have come across them, three-digit angel numbers are widespread.

  • Pisces And Leo Compatibility Is Quite Strong

    Pisces And Leo Compatibility Is Quite Strong

    Leo will inevitably rule Pisces in some aspect of life, Pisces and Leo compatibility whether it is in terms of work, friendship, or love. However, as Leos are kind and loving rulers who have no malice in their hearts, and since the fish don't mind being ruled if it's done with warmth and love, this isn't always a terrible thing.

  • Angel Number 6666 Meaning - A Sign That Your Heart Is Full Of Love

    Angel Number 6666 Meaning - A Sign That Your Heart Is Full Of Love

    If you keep seeing the same number in your life, it's not a coincidence. The angels use Angel Number 6666 meaning to send you an important message. If you can clearly interpret the message of angel number 6666, it will serve you well. This number appears in your life directly from the divine realm.