10 milestones in the history of medicinal cannabis

The history of medical cannabis is long and turbulent, encompassing almost every corner of the globe and spanning over 6,000 years. Here, we set out what we believe are the most significant milestones on the long march to gain recognition of cannabis as a powerful, effective, and safe medicine.

Publication of the Sanskrit Ayurvedic texts

Unlike the dates of many early Chinese texts, the Ancient Indians were fairly proactive when it came to dating their historical records, and as a result modern scholars are fairly confident that the first known references to cannabis appear in the Atharvaveda, written in around 1,400 BCE.

In the Atharvaveda, there are multiple references to bhanga, which is well-known (and still continues) to be a common word for cannabis throughout much of Asia and East Africa. An ancient drawing showing The legendary Chinese emperor Shen Nung, who is believed to have popularised medical use of cannabis...

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