History of Cannabis

Evidence of humanity’s interaction with cannabis stretches back nearly as far as recorded history itself. The earliest reliable mentions of the plant’s healing potential are nearly 5000 years old, and it is possible we have employed it for even longer. It is no exaggeration to say that we have harnessed the power of cannabis across continents and civilizations. But as with any powerful force, for all it has been revered, it has also been feared. Modern times have of course seen various interests work to control or eliminate the plant, and prohibition is not new—efforts to suppress cannabis date back to at least the 14th century, when a ruler of Arabia decreed the plant be destroyed. What follows is a timeline of our dynamic relationship with cannabis.