Hemp or Cannabis in Ancient Greece and Rome

The image of an intoxicated ancient world goes against the idea that moderation was the key to life. By Dr. Alan SumlerProfessor, Modern Languages DepartmentUniversity of Colorado Denver The ancient Greeks and Romans used hemp fiber for their boat sails, ropes, wicker-work, clothes, and shoes. Although no piece of Classical scholarship has focused on hemp[…]

Drugs and Medicine in the Graeco-Roman World

The best physicians were well schooled in pharmaceutical lore, with an armamentarium of drugs. By Dr. John ScarboroughProfessor of Medical HistoryUniversity of Madison-Wisconsin Introduction The doctor stepped softly out of the sickroom, where Licinius was breathing his last. Rattling, rasping, wheezing, gasping for air, the senator had accepted death and requested that his friend and[…]

Ancient Peoples and Psychoactive Plants

Our early ancestors had complex relationships with psychoactive plants. By Dan Reist, Nicole Bodner, and Rielle Capler Early Humans and the Earth Like modern humans, early humans had a range of built-in desires—a desire to live in groups, a desire for fun or relief from daily struggles, and a desire to understand and prosper in[…]