What follows is the raw material for a research project originally meant for Wikipedia, which has strict guidelines about what sources are considered reliable. Mostly recent studies found in PubMed were used.
For 5 millennia, Cannabis sativa has been used throughout the world medically, recreationally, and spiritually. As a folk medicine marijuana has been “used to treat an endless variety of human miseries,” although typically under the aegis of strict cultural controls, according to DuPont. The first medical use probably occurred in Central Asia and later spread to China and India. The Chinese emperor Shen-Nung is known to have prescribed it nearly 5 millennia ago. Between 2000 and 1400 bc, it traveled to India and from there to Egypt, Persia, and Syria. Greeks and Romans valued the plant for its ropelike qualities as hemp, although it also had medical applications. The medieval physician Avicenna included it in his…
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