The world’s oldest stash of marijuana has been discovered in China. The pot was put inside a tomb in a remote area about 2,700 years ago. Researchers determined that the stash was used for “psychoactive purposes” and not as a fiber for clothing or food.
The researchers found 789 grams of dried cannabis buried with a light-haired, blue-eyed Caucasian man. He is thought to have been a shaman of the Gushi culture.
While the stash had retained it’s colour the aroma has been lost with the passage of time.
The Canadian Press reports:
“To our knowledge, these investigations provide the oldest documentation of cannabis as a pharmacologically active agent,” says the newly published paper, whose lead author was American neurologist Dr. Ethan B. Russo.
Marijuana has been found from ancient Egypt and other sites. The Greek historian Herodotus wrote about it. So far though this recent find is the oldest that has been able to be tested for its properties.
Most of the researchers on the team are based in China. They tried without success to germinate 100 of the seeds found in the cache.
Some may find this even more disappointing as the tests have shown that the cannabis has a very high content of THC.
It is not known how the shaman would have used his stash, there were no pipes or bongs buried with him. It was contained in a leather basket and in a wooden bowl quite possibly for the man to use in his afterlife.
“This materially is unequivocally cannabis, and no material has previously had this degree of analysis possible,” Russo said in an interview from Missoula, Mont.
“It was common practice in burials to provide materials needed for the afterlife. No hemp or seeds were provided for fabric or food. Rather, cannabis as medicine or for visionary purposes was supplied.”
This find helps confirm that marijuana has been used for a very long time. The region of Xinjiang in China is considered to be an original source for many of the cannabis strains found throughout the world.