Historical Writers

Historical Writers

Some of the brightest and most creative minds in the world, writers have always been an interesting sort. Historical writers are still celebrated today for their works, influence, and commentary on society.

Of course, plenty of the world’s most famous writers also enjoyed using marijuana. Perhaps it was to increase their creativity and inspiration, or perhaps it was for medicinal purposes. In any case, the following writers are celebrated for their incredible accomplishments and are also known to have consumed marijuana.

Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde, a world-famous writer during the 19th century, most famous for his great work entitled The Picture of Dorian Gray as well as the play, The Importance of Being Earnest. Wilde pushed boundaries not only in his writing but also in his personal life.

Wilde was born in 1854 in Dublin. He lectured in support of aestheticism, an approach to intellectualism and the simple enjoyment of art without any additional meaning or purpose (be it political, social, or otherwise).

Wilde’s best-known work, The Picture of Dorian Gray, was published in 1891 and was criticized as immoral during this Victorian era. Just four years later, Wilde was imprisoned for having an affair with a man (under the charges of “gross indecency”). He died three years after his release (in the year 1900 at age 46).

It is said that Wilde has smoked marijuana (or hashish) at least once, specifically during a trip in Egypt, if not at home as well. He apparently wrote, “Bosie (his lover)and I have taken to hashish. It is quite exquisite; three puffs of smoke and then peace and love.”

 

Herodotus

 

Herodotus was a Greek historian who is quite the historical figure himself. He was born sometime around the year 484 BC, and he died somewhere between 430 and 420 BC. He was born in Asia Minor (which is now part of present-day Turkey).

According to historians, Herodotus likely lived in Athens and made acquaintance with Sophocles. He traveled quite a bit, covering much of the Persian Empire. In fact, he spent years traveling around present-day Europe and the Middle East.

Herodotus wrote History, a series of 9 volumes that included a number of wars such as the Greco-Persian Wars, as well as various invasions and battles. It additionally describes the Persian Empire itself, including its history, organization, social structure, and geography. Herodotus was the first Greek historian and the first person to create a unified, comprehensive history writing. His work continues to be hugely important for learning about Greek history as well as Asian and Egyptian history during that time period.

Herodotus also is connected to Cannabis. In fact, he is the first known Western person to write about Cannabis. He describes how it was religiously used as part of a ceremony for the dead and in steam baths.

Shakespeare

 

William Shakespeare, known to just about everyone in the English speaking world, was a playwright, poet, and actor. His accomplishments include publishing 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two narrative poems, and more. He was born in 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon in England. When he was 18 years old he married the 26-year-old Anne Hathaway, with whom he had 3 children.

Since Shakespeare began publishing his works (mostly between 1589 and 1613), his plays have been performed all over the world time and time again for more than 400 years.

It is thought that Shakespeare was already making a living and producing plays in London by the year 1592. 15 of his plays were already published by the year 1597. His writing style was incredibly innovative, using the traditional style of the time but also making it work for him in his own way. He is most famous for his use of iambic pentameter, although not 100% of his plays always used this — again, he made the form work for him so he could accomplish exactly what he meant to.

A few years ago, a study unveiled that it was likely that Shakespeare smoked marijuana during his lifetime. Fragments of his tobacco pipes were analyzed, and eight out of 24 of them tested positive for residue of Cannabis. Believe it or not, his famous Sonnet 76 might even refer to drugs.

 

Alexandre Dumas

 

This French author has works that are certainly extremely well known around the globe. His most famous works include The Three Musketeers and The Count of Monte Cristo. These works, as well as others, have been translated into over a hundred languages.

Dumas was born in 1802 in France. His grandmother was a Haitian slave, and Dumas was originally her last name. Alexandre’s father took the name when he went into the army (Napoleon’s army, to be specific). After he had a disagreement with Napoleon, he was imprisoned and died shortly after his sentence ended. Dumas’ mother was still living, however, and she ensured that Dumas received an education.

In 1822 Dumas was living in Paris, and in 1830 (during the revolution of that time) he was working as a scribe for the Duke of Orléans, cousin of King Louis XVI. During this time he started writing comedic and dramatic plays. He later moved on to novels, essays, and short stories. His rival, Victor Hugo (author of Les Miserables) was considered to have a similar romantic writing style. Of course, Dumas’ main successes were The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers, both of which were published as serials at first.

It is understood that Dumas was a consumer or proponent of marijuana. Quoted from The Count of Monte Cristo:

“When you return to this mundane sphere from your visionary world, you would seem to leave a Neapolitan spring for a Lapland winter – to quit paradise for earth – heaven for hell! Taste the hashish, guest of mine – taste the hashish!”

 

 

 

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