The History of Nicotine Addiction

The History of Nicotine Addiction

John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

27 Jan 2003, 11:53 #1

The Consumers Union Report
on Licit and Illicit Drugs
by Edward M. Brecher and the Editors of Consumer Reports Magazine, 1972

Part III
Nicotine
Nicotine no longer has medicinal uses. Taken in tobacco-cigarette, cigar, pipe, chewing, and snuff-its effects are variable; it can act as a stimulant, depressant, or tranquilizer. Tobacco is one of the most physiologically damaging substances used by man. When smoked in cigarettes it is the chief cause of lung cancer. Tobacco is also a factor in other cancers, in coronary artery disease, in emphysema of the lungs, and in other diseases. Since nicotine is one of the most perniciously addicting drugs in common use, most tobacco users are "hooked" and, in effect, locked to the damaging effects of the tobacco.
Chapter 23. Tobacco
Columbus and other early explorers who followed him were amazed to meet Indians who carried rolls of dried leaves that they set afire-and who then "drank the smoke" that emerged from the rolls. Other Indians carried pipes in which they burned the same leaves, and from which they similarly "drank" the smoke.
The Indians knew, of course, the strange power that these leaves had over them. When two sixteenth-century English sea captains persuaded three Indians to accompany them to London, the Indians, "unable to give up their habit of smoking, brought supplies of tobacco with them."1 Sailors aboard the early exploring vessels also tried this curious, mind affecting smoke, and found that they liked it. Then as today, nicotine produced a unique combination of effects: at moments when stimulation is needed, smokers perceive the smoke as stimulating, and when they feel anxious, they perceive the smoke as tranquilizing. Like the Indians who taught them to smoke, moreover, the early sailors promptly learned another fact about tobacco: after they had smoked for a while, they had to go on smoking several times a day, day after day, or they fell prey to a miserable craving that only tobacco could satisfy. The tobacco did not have to be smoked; the Indians knew (and the sailors learned) that the craving is assuaged when tobacco is chewed, or taken as snuff-ground to a powder and inhaled. But it had to be tobacco leaves-no other substances would relieve the craving. Accordingly, when the sailors returned home they carried abundant supplies of tobacco-and seeds-with them. They also carried leaves and seeds when they embarked on subsequent expeditions to other parts of the world. Within a few decades, they had spread the tobacco plant-and tobacco addiction-literally around the world.
Magellan's crew smoked tobacco, and left seeds in the Philippines and other ports of call. The Dutch brought tobacco to the Hottentots; the Portuguese brought it to the Polynesians.* Soon, wherever sailors went -in Asia, Africa, even Australia-they found tobacco awaiting them. The natives tended the plants, and learned to smoke the leaves them selves. A failure of the tobacco crop became a local disaster. Early sailors, approaching the island of Nias in the Malay Archipelago, were greeted with cries: "Faniso Toca'!" and "Faniso sabe'!"-that is, "Tobacco, sir, strong tobacco," and "We die, sir, if we have no tobacco !" 3
* Jerome E. Brooks wrote (1952): "All along the sea rotates ... wherever they had trading posts, the Portuguese began the limited planting of tobacco. Before the end of the sixteenth century they had developed these small farms to a point where they could be assured of enough tobacco to meet their personal needs, for gifts, and for barter. By the beginning of the seventeenth century these farms had, in many places, become plantations, often under native control." 2
Settlers in the Americas, like visitors, learned to smoke. Bishop Bartolome de las Casas reported as early as 1527 that the Spanish settlers on the island of Hispaniola (Haiti) smoked cigars like the Indians. "When reproached for such a disgusting habit," be added, "they replied that they found it impossible to give it up." 4
As tobacco smoking spread through England, the demand often exceeded the supply, and prices then soared. London tobacco shops were equipped with balances; the buyer placed silver coins in one pan and might receive in the other pan, ounce for ounce, only as much tobacco as lie gave silver. The high price, however, did not curb demand. In 1610 an English observer noted: "Many a young nobleman's estate is altogether spent and scattered to nothing in smoke. This befalls in a shameful and beastly fashion, in that a man's estate runs out through his nose,' and he wastes whole days, even years, in drinking of tobacco; men smoke even in bed." 5
The addicting nature of tobacco was noted at about the same time by Sir Francis Bacon, who wrote: "The use of tobacco is growing greatly and conquers men with a certain secret pleasure, so that those who have once become accustomed thereto can later hard1v be restrained therefrom." 6
By 1614, despite the high price of tobacco in London, its use had spread even to the very poor. One observer reported: "There is not so base a groome, that commes into an Alehouse to call for his pot, but he must have his pipe of tobacco, for it is a commoditic that is nowe as vendible in every Taverne, Inne, and Alehouse, as eyther Wine, Ale, or Beare, and for Apothicaries Shops, Grosers Shops, Chaundlers Shops, they are (almost) never without company, that from morning till night are still taking of Tobacco. . . ."7 The number of tobacco shops in London in 1614 was estimated at 7,000.8
In the Americas, the addiction of the Indians to tobacco raised problems for the Catholic Church. The Indians insisted on smoking even in church, as they had been accustomed to do in their own places of worship. "As early as 1575," we are told, "a Mexican [Church] Council issued an order forbidding the use of tobacco in the churches throughout the whole of Spanish America. Soon, however, the missionary priests from Europe themselves became so addicted to the habit that it was found necessary to make laws to prevent them from smoking or taking [tobacco] snuff during any part of the Mass or the Divine Office." 9
* Sixteenth-century Englishmen, like many American Indians, customarily exhaled the smoke through the nose.
By the mid-seventeenth century, tobacco had spread through central Europe, where its addicting nature was clearly visible. In Bohemia in 1662, it was reported, "the common people are so given up to the abuse that they imagine they cannot live without several pipes of tobacco a day-thus squandering in these necessitous times the pennies they need for their daily bread." 10 And from Nuremberg in 1661: "Many a one becomes so used to the stuff that he cannot be parted from it neither day nor night." 11 At Karlsruhe at about the same time there is mention of "the smoking fellows of Northern Germany who live only to smoke and who cannot live without it. . . ." 12 And from Austria in 1677: "For although tobacco be not necessary for the sustenance of man, yet have matters gone so far that many are of a mind that they would rather lack bread than tobacco." 13
In Africa at the same time, the story was remarkably similar:
West Coast Africans bad developed such a taste for the kind of tobacco brought them by the Portuguese that they clearly preferred to transact business only with these whites. A good part of the business lay in the capture of inland Negroes for the slave trade. Prices for slaves became fairly standardized; a Negro trader in Guinea, for instance, would be paid six or seven rolls of Brazil tobacco (each weighing seventy-five pounds) for the delivery of another Negro into servitude. The use of tobacco was never more corrupted-nor did it ever bring a greater price. Hottentots in the Cape Colony were so eager for tobacco, almost any kind, that the commodity was a major item in the sale of the land which established the Colony in 1652. Poor, ignorant natives continued to part with their land and valuable articles for comparatively small quantities of the new sedative to which they had wholly succumbed. For a piece of roll tobacco they willingly sold their splendid steers, the measure of the animal from horns to extended tail being equal to a single length of twisted leaf.14
Where tobacco smoking was taboo, as in churches, tobacco snuff was inhaled instead-but this also proved addicting. The Princess Elizabeth Charlotte of Orleans made this point clearly in a letter to her sister early in the eighteenth century:
Our King likes [snuff ] no more than I do, but all his children and grandchildren take to it, without caring for displeasing the King. It is better to take no snuff at all than a little; for it is certain that he who takes a little will soon take much, and that is why they call it "the enchanted herb," for those who take it are so taken by it that they cannot go without it; so take care of yourself, dear Louise! 15
Pope Urban VIII issued a formal bull against tobacco, sealed with the Fisherman's Ring, in 1642, and Pope Innocent X issued another in 1650 16 -but clergy as well as laymen continued to smoke.* Bavaria prohibited tobacco in 1652, Saxony in 1653, Zurich in 1667,18 and so on across Europe-but the states, like the Church, proved powerless to stem the drug. The Sultan Murad IV decreed the death penalty for smoking tobacco in Constantinople in 1633.
* By 1725 even the Pope was forced to capitulate. Louis Lewin wrote (1924): "Benedict XIII, who himself liked to take snuff, annulled all edicts . . . in order to avoid the scandalous spectacle of dignitaries of the church hastening out in order to take a few clandestine whiffs in some corner away from spying eyes." 17
Whenever the Sultan went on his travels or on a military expedition his halting-places were always distinguished by a terrible increase in the number of executions. Even on the battlefield he was fond of surprising men in the act of smoking, when be would punish them by beheading, hanging, quartering, or crushing their hands and feet and leaving them helpless between the lines. . . . Nevertheless, in spite of all the horrors of this persecution and the insane cruelties inflicted by the Sultan, whose blood-lust seemed to increase with age, the passion for smoking still persisted. . . . Even the fear of death was of no avail with the passionate devotees of the habit.19
The first of the Romanoff czars, Michael Feodorovitch, similarly prohibited smoking, under dire penalties, in 1634. "Offenders are usually sentenced to slitting of the nostrils, the bastinado, or the knout," a visitor to Moscow noted.20 Yet, in 1698, smokers in Moscow would pay far more for tobacco than English smokers-"and if they want money, they will struck their cloaths for it, to the very shirt."21
The case of Japan is for several reasons of special interest. Though Marco Polo had brought rumors about Zipangu (Japan) home with him, no European actually saw that land until about 1542, when a Chinese pirate vessel with several Portuguese seamen on board was driven off course by a storm and forced to take shelter in a Japanese harbor. The shipwrecked Portuguese, of course, had their tobacco with them-and thus Japan learned about smoking. Other Portuguese followed, bringing more tobacco. "Japanese accounts still exist," Count Corti writes, "describing how the Portuguese merchants and seamen ... taught the inhabitants of Kiushiu to smoke. By 1595 the habit was well established ." 22 An edict prohibiting smoking followed in 1603.
As no notice was taken of this edict, still severer measures were taken in 1607 and 1609, by which the cultivation of tobacco was made a penal offence. Finally, in 1612, jeyasu decreed that the property of any man detected in selling tobacco should be handed over to his accuser, and anyone arresting a man conveying tobacco on a pack-horse might take both horse and tobacco for his own. Yet in spite of all attempts at repression smoking became so general that in 1615 even the officers in attendance on the Shogun-at that time residing at Yeddo, the modern Tokio-had acquired the habit. The result was a sterner warning, to the effect that anyone in the army caught smoking was liable to have his property confiscated. In 1616 the penalties were made still more severe: to a sentence of imprisonment a fine was added, in many cases equivalent to an increase of from thirty to fifty days on the original term. But it was all of no avail; the custom spread rapidly in every direction; until, as we read in an Imperial poem of the time, many smokers were to be found even in the Mikado's palace. Finally even the princes who were responsible for the prohibition took to smoking, and the great land-owners and rulers of the Daimios, the military and feudal aristocracy, who were all devotees of the habit, were glad to let the laws fall into abeyance. In 1625 permission was given to cultivate and plant tobacco, except in rice fields and vegetable gardens. By 1639 tobacco bad taken its place in polite Japanese society as an accompaniment to the ceremonial cup of tea offered to a guest.23
From those days until today, it is most important to note, no country that has ever learned to use tobacco has given up the practice.* More remarkable still, no other substance has been found through the centuries since 1492 that can take the place of tobacco. Tobacco smokers who learn to smoke opium or marijuana go right on smoking tobacco in addition-clear evidence, surely, that it is something in tire tobacco rather than the act of smoking which underlies the addiction.
*The one apparent exception is England, where tobacco smoking went out of style for a time during the eighteenth century. The exception is only apparent, however, for eighteenth-century Englishmen continued to get their regular nicotine dosage by inhaling snuff. Edward H. Pinto wrote (1961): Snuff-taking "does not seem to have made great progress in challenging the supremacy of smoking, even in Court circles, until snuff-taking William and Mary came to the throne in 1689 ... and by the time of Anne (1702), another confirmed snuff taker, it is related that scarcely a man of rank but carried the insidious dust about him.... Queen Charlotte, though only seventeen when she married George 111, was such a confirmed snuff taker that she was known as 'Snuffy Charlotte."' Use by the common people of Britain began in 1702 when the British fleet "captured from the Spanish, near Cadiz, several thousand barrels of choice Spanish snuff, and near Vigo a further cargo of Havana snuff, intended for the Spanish market. This vast quantity ... was sold at the English seaports at a very low price, the proceeds being prize money for the benefit of the sailors and officers. Thus was the general snuff habit born in Britain." 24
Snuff is still taken there and in the United States, where some 25,000,000 pounds are consumed per year. A January 1971 press release of the Smokeless Tobacco Council reports: "The headmistress of a young ladies' seminary in the Midwest was puzzled recently by the fact that so many of her students had given up smoking. On investigation, she found out why: Being unable to smoke except at specified times of the day, and in the one room of the school set aside for it, the girls had discovered a really wonderful and beautifully simple substitute: They'd begun using snuff!" 25
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John (Gold)
Joined: 18 Dec 2008, 23:57

08 Feb 2004, 07:35 #2

Tracing tobacco to its roots Lifestyle Magazine
Sunday, February 8, 2004 [/size]
How 'mbaki' was distilled from tubbaq and then reimported to Africa[/size]
By PHILIP OCHIENG[/size]
The British introduced the Luo to cigarette smoking only a century ago. So how is it that the Luo have an indigenous word for a "cigarette", ndawa? And why is ndawa - a "Nilotic" word - so closely related to Kiswahili dawa and other Bantu words to do with healing?[/size]
Let us approach the question from another direction. Our President is called Kibaki. This is a native Kikuyu name. Yet there is something universal about it. Without the prefix ki (which denotes largeness), we get baki. [/size]
This is very close to the Luo mbaki and both are very close to the English baccy. The question is: Is the word kibaki etymologically related to the words tobacco (English), tumbaku (Hindi) and their cognates in other Indo-European languages?[/size]
Who - between the Africans and the Europeans - influenced whom? That question, however, would seem uninformed. For in the classroom, we were taught that the influence travelled from neither continent.[/size]
Both the plant and its name, we learnt, reached Europe from the Americas, and only after Christopher Columbus. It was Europe that spread these to the rest of the world, including Africa and India. [/size]
In The Atlantis Blueprint, a book co-authored with Rand Flem-Ath as recently as 2000, Colin Wilson was still asserting that "...tobacco first came to Europe from South America in the time of Christopher Columbus..."[/size]
In Gateway to Atlantis, Andrew Collins scoffs at this "...common belief that there was no tobacco in the ancient world until after it was introduced from the Americas during [Europe's] age of discovery." [/size]
By "the ancient world" the British writer means the Eurafrasian mega-continent better known as "the Old World". [/size]
The emerging evidence is that the plant and its name are totally native to Africa. It was the Africans who took it to both the Americas and Europe - and even Asia - and they did it millennia before the "Age of Discovery".[/size]
Writes Collins: "...there is ample evidence to show that a form of wild tobacco, called Nicotiana rustica, as opposed to the New World variant designated Nicotiana tabacum, was widely known in parts of Africa, including the Western Sudan, long before Columbus." [/size]
That seems to contradict my thesis. If the American type is what is tabacum and its African variant only a rustica, then the word "tobacco" must be American. [/size]
But the bionominal system we call taxonomy is only as old as Carolus Linnaeus in the 18th Century. The Swedish botanist was merely throwing back to the Americas a word which a European language called Latin had borrowed from Africa in pharaonic times.[/size]
In short, Linnaeus was simply giving to an American plant a European derivative of a word already known in Africa and already widespread in the Indo-European world through African colonists thousands of years before Henry the Navigator.[/size]
Tobacco reached south-eastern Europe through the Danaans, the "Ethiopians" who, moving through Egypto-Libya and Syro-Palestine, overran Crete, the Aegeans, Greece, Thrace, the Troad and Armenia in the sixth millennium BC. [/size]
In Collins's Gods of Eden, we learn that Magan was the Sumerian word for north-east Africa, including Egypt and the Sudan. It becomes clear that tobacco reached India from Africa's Nilotic region, Canaan, Armenia and Sumeria. [/size]
It was in the "Sudanic belt" that the word "tobacco" originated. It has been traced to tubbaq in western Sudan.[/size]
Collins reports: "The art of smoking was known as tubbaq, and ... under this name ... it filtered into a number of African [languages] as variations such as taba, tawa and tama."[/size]
But he adds: " ... the use of the terms tubbaq, taba and tabgha for smoking leads us to the question of the origin of the word 'tobacco', employed by the pre-Colombian peoples of the Caribbeans to denote both the act of smoking and the instrument used in the smoking process. [/size]
"Could it be that there are common origins for these word variations which all denote the same thing - smoking tobacco?[/size]
"The similarities between these root words for tobacco smoking only deepen the mystery and strongly suggest that either the tobacco plant was introduced into Africa via transatlantic contact before the age of Columbus or it was taken to the Americas by visitors from the African continent. [/size]
"If this is possible, it could mean that tobacco was present on both sides of the Atlantic as early as 1500 BC, the date attributed to the earliest known smoking pipes found in the Americas..."[/size]
That is instructive. For this exactly is the date at which evidence puts the beginning of the Negro Olmec civilisation in Mexico, Guatemala and Yucatan. [/size]
All the evidence shows Old World movement to the Americas - Hamites (Phoenicians, Canaanites, Pelasgians, Cretans, Egyptians and Carthaginians) from the Mediterranean, especially North Africa) and "Negroes" (Nubians or "Ethiopians" from the Great Lakes of Eastern and Central Africa and West Africa). [/size]
Despite the myth of "Atlantis" peddled by such pop archaeologists as Murry Hope, Edgar Cayce and Charles Berlitz, there is absolutely no evidence of a reverse process - of indigenous Americans ever systematically visiting Eurafrica or, from the other side, Eurasia. [/size]
We have only the evidence of these Hamito-Negroes and, later, their Lixitae, Celtic and, much later, Viking offshoots going and returning again and again. [/size]
Today "West Sudan" is called the Sahel and includes Mali, Chad and Senegal. However, linguistic anthropology includes their tongues in a greater cluster called Nilo-Saharan, which includes modern Dholuo, my own mother tongue, and is in some way related to Coptic (ancient Egyptian).[/size]
Thus, if tubbaq means "to smoke tobacco", it has given rise to various substantives throughout the Nilo-Saharan world. But the influence has gone far beyond to affect two other major African linguistic groups, including what linguistic anthropology calls Hamito-Semitic (or Afro-Asiatic).[/size]
These are languages spoken in north-eastern Africa (Kenya, Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea), north-western Africa (Berber, Moor, Tuareg, Fulani and Hausa), North Africa and south-western Asia, where Arabic is the only living member, but which once included Assyrian, Akkadian, Hebrew and Syriac (the language that Jesus would have spoken).[/size]
Tubbaq has wide currency among the neighbouring Niger-Congo group better known as Bantu. Although Kiswahili has an imposing Hamito-Semitic thought structure, it remains basically Niger-Congo. [/size]
So, like other Bantu tongues, it would have borrowed tubbaq directly from the Nilo-Saharans or indirectly from the Hamito-Semites.[/size]
If, then, taba, tawa and tama are derived from tubbaq, so is the Kiswahili dawa ("medicine"). For, throughout, tobacco was almost a panacea. And that is what relates it, etymologically, to the Luo ndawa (cigarette) and its Luhya equivalent, indaba. Like taba, tawa and dawa, ndawa is derived from the first syllable of tubbaq ("tub", pronounced: toob).[/size]
As is common in many languages, the initial "t" would have first hardened into a "d" to produce dawa. We see this process even among Indo-European languages. For instance, Teut (Hamito-Semitic) became first theos (Greek) and then deus (Latin).[/size]
In Africa, the d would then have metamorphosed into "nd" - one of those plosive initial consonants peculiar to Africa - to produce the Luo ndawa and the Luhya indaba and their equivalents elsewhere.[/size]
The "b" in that same syllable would have softened into a "w" for tub and taba to evolve into tawa, dawa and ndawa. This, again, is a common process as a language gets more sophisticated. Uganda's Lepluo (Acholi for "Luo-tongue") is more basically Luo than Kenya's Dholuo ("Luo-mouth").[/size]
In Lepluo, then, the word for "soil" or "earth" is lobo and the word for "six" is abichel (a contraction of abich and achel - "five and one"). In Dholuo, however, the b in those words has been softened into a w and the words have respectively become lowo or loo (the latter pronounced: lo-oh) and auchiel.[/size]
The b in the second part of tubbaq ("baq") would have evolved into another plosive consonant, "mb", to produce mbak and mbaki (dried and ground tobacco leaves - tobacco readied for snuffing). This word, too, existed in Dholuo long before the British advent. [/size]
Yet the Kikuyu - a Bantu people - had that same word for snuff long before they ever heard of the Luo or the British. In Kikuyu, it comes from mabaki, a bunch of tobacco leaves. Kibaki is a bunch so big that it will romp into State House almost nyalhodia (as the Luo might say).[/size]
Yet we find that the Luo-Kikuyu word mbaki is almost identical to the English word baccy (pronounced: baki). This is only a colloquial form of "tobacco", true. But the process of colloquialising it gives us an inkling into how our own mbaki was distilled from tubbaq.[/size]
The question, then, is stark. Where did English get its tobacco and French its tabac? Dictionaries of European languages never delve into its African root. At best, they admit only that they obtained it through the Spanish tabaco or tobago from a Caribbean (Taino) word.[/size]
Collins's answer: "Since we now know that a species of the tobacco plant was present in Sudan before the age of Columbus...and samples taken from the mummified remains in western Sudan also reveal high quantities of nicotine, it is possible that tobacco entered Egypt via Nubia ..."[/size]
He goes on: "It could have occurred as early as pharaonic times or as late as the mid-fifteenth century. As fantastic as this proposal might seem, the only realistic solution to explain the discovery of cocaine in Egyptian mummies is to suggest trading contact between the two continents [Africa and the Americas]." [/size]
He concludes: "... if the coca leaf was really being exported in this manner, there has to be a possibility that tobacco from Central America was also being shipped to the ancient world [Eurafrasia]."[/size]
But there is nothing fantastic about it. Such an import should, more correctly, be called "reimport". Somebody was reimporting to Africa what the Hamito-Negro ancestors had taken to the Americas nearly 2,000 years earlier.[/size]
If the Hamites (the Phoenicians and their Carthaginian offshoots) played the vanguard role in the exploration of the Americas), the search for a livelihood - either plunder or trade - was the one thing that really impelled them.[/size]
Collins commented on Dr Michelle Lescot's 1976 discovery of tiny tobacco samples in Pharaoh Rameses II's mummy, a discovery which scholars first dismissed as "absolutely impossible" unless the wrappings had been "contaminated" by pipe-smoking Egyptologists when they unearthed the mummy from a Deir el-Bahri tomb in southern Egypt in 1881.[/size]
Nation Media Group. Copyright 2004
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wackylaurie
Joined: 19 Dec 2008, 00:33

08 Feb 2004, 20:41 #3

Thanks John..... Interesting readingImage
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