History of tobacco and its origin
White man smoking When you think about the history of tobacco, you may be the first to think of a pipe of peace. And you are not far from the truth. The custom of lighting tobacco leaves and inhaling smoke was indeed learned by Christopher Columbus from the original inhabitants of America when he sailed to its shores in 1492. And as full of New World discoveries, smoking has gradually spread around the globe.
An essential part of shamanic rituals
The very first tobacco plant grew on the territory of today's Central America sometime around 6000 BC. A few thousand years later, the first records of its use date between the Aztecs and the Maya, but also the ancient Indians. Like the American Indians, tobacco was used primarily for religious and healing rituals, and its consumption was the prerogative of shamans. As for processing, tobacco has always been snorted, chewed and smoked.
The first European smoker Rodrigo de Jerez
Medieval Europe does not know tobacco and is first introduced to it in the form of dried leaves, which are brought to the old continent by Spanish colonizers. For the first time, a Belgian botanist succeeded in growing tobacco in our conditions in the middle of the 16th century, with which came a real boom. Portugal is becoming a growing power, from where popularity has spread to England, the Netherlands and gradually throughout Europe. It is consumed in the form of cigars, pipes, as well as snuff or chewing tobacco, which was less dangerous in the days of wooden straw houses.
Tobacco as a medicine
Smoking was first used for medical purposes. Doctors prescribed it, for example, for toothache, migraine, but also for plague, asthma and cancer. Over time, however, smoking became common, even if you weren't bothered by an ailment. From the beginning, this custom also had its opponents, such as the Anglician King James I, who in 1604 published the famous "Critique of Tobacco." However, tobacco use has never been curtailed or even banned.
Machine production of cigarettes
Another turning point is the 19th century, when in 1832 an Egyptian soldier packed his first cigarette. During the Turkish-Egyptian war, he did not have a pipe and, in an emergency, wrapped tobacco in paper. This was followed by the first large-scale production of hand-rolled cigarettes in France (1843), the first factory (Dresden, 1862), until around 1880 the American James Bonsack came up with a mechanized production of cigarettes and patented his prototype. Instead of hand-packed 200 cigarettes per hour, it is possible to machine 10,000 of them at a time, and thin paper rolls filled with dried tobacco are thus slightly more affordable.
Cigarette as a social status
At the beginning of the 20th century, cigarettes became a social phenomenon - no party went without them, they appeared in films in abundance, and the generals also demanded them as a basic need for their troops later during the world wars. Likewise, tobacco was part of the salary for soldiers.
The end of tobacco smoke
Around 1950, the first reports of the harmful effects of smoking began to be published, followed by bans on advertising and, finally, at the turn of the millennium, restrictions on smoking in public and indoors. In recent years, the smoking of conventional cigarettes has been abandoned and the method of heating tobacco using electronic devices such as PULZE is preferred.