First Known Cannabis Users

Ancient and modern historians, archaeologists, anthropologists, philologists cite the physical evidence (artifacts, relics, textiles, cuneiform, languages, etc.) indicating that cannabis is one of humanity's oldest cultivated crops. The weaving of hemp fiber as an industry began 10,000 years ago, at approximately the same time as pottery making and prior to metal working.*

* Columbia History of the World, Harper & Row, NY, 1981.

From at least the 27th Century B.C.E. until this century, cannabis was incorporated into virtually all cultures of the Middle East, Asia Minor, India, China, Japan, Europe, & Africa. By the 27th Century B.C.E., the Chinese cultivated "Ma" (cannabis hemp) for fiber, medicine, and herbal use. 3,700 years later (circa 1000 C.E.), China called cannabis "Tai-Ma," or "great hemp," to differentiate it from the minor fiber plants, which were grouped under the generic fiber term "Ma." Their pictogram for true hemp is a large "man," indicating the strong relationship between man and hemp.

(Shen Nung Pharmacopoeia; Ponts'ao Ching; Han Dynasty classics; et al.)

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