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Scythians & Cannabis: Wide Cultivation and Utilization of Cannabis

Updated: May 19, 2023

The Scythians have a significant historical association with cannabis. Throughout ancient times, the Scythian nomadic tribes, known for their military prowess and equestrian skills, were closely connected with the cultivation, use, and cultural significance of cannabis.


Historical accounts and archaeological evidence suggest that the Scythians not only cultivated cannabis but also utilized it for various purposes. They primarily used the plant for its psychoactive properties, employing it in religious and ceremonial rituals as well as for recreational consumption.

Herodotus, a Greek historian from the 5th century BCE, documented the Scythians' use of cannabis in his writings. He described how they would create steam baths by throwing hemp seeds onto hot stones, leading to a smoke-filled atmosphere that induced intoxication.


Above, Statues of Scythian Women


The Scythians also used cannabis in their burial rituals. Archaeological discoveries of Scythian burial mounds, known as kurgans, have revealed artifacts and remnants associated with cannabis. These findings include hemp seeds, leaves, and residue, indicating its inclusion in funerary practices and possibly suggesting a belief in the plant's ability to aid in the transition to the afterlife.


The Scythians' connection to cannabis extended beyond their own culture. They engaged in trade and cultural exchanges with neighboring societies, spreading knowledge and awareness of the plant's properties and applications. This interaction likely contributed to the dissemination of cannabis throughout different regions of the ancient world.


The Scythians played a significant role in the historical narrative of cannabis, contributing to its cultural, religious, and recreational significance in ancient times.



-Sean Despain


New Earth Integration and Plant Medicine

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