Cannabis Sativa is an old plant
with a long history
The word, sativa, comes from Latin
and means "sown" or "cultivated."
In fact, the hemp plant, Cannabis Sativa, has
been cultivated by humans for thousands of
Cultivated primarily for its strength as a fiber
and for its medicinal uses, it has even been
grown for food.
Some of the earliest archeological hemp
evidence, about 10,000 B.C., comes from
rope imprints on broken Chinese pottery.
Fragments of hemp cloth have also been
found in Chinese burial chambers dating
from the Chou Dynasty (1122-249 B.C.).
In addition to archeological evidence,
written documents refer to hemp as a source
of clothing. For example, The Shu King, a
book dating to about 2350 B.C., refers to the
soil in Shantung as rich with silk and hemp
while ancient poetry mentions young girls
weaving hemp into clothing (Abel, 1980).
The Chinese also relied on hemp for warfare.
Due to its strength and durability Chinese
archers made bowstrings from hemp. Because
these hemp bowstrings were stronger than
the enemy's bamboo ones, the Chinese arrows
could fly further. This was a large advantage
in war. In fact, hemp was so important that
Chinese monarchs allocated large portions of
land specifically for growing hemp - the first
Then, there is paper. Yes, paper. Paper is
probably one of the most significant Chinese
inventions. Fragments of paper containing
hemp fiber have been found in Chinese graves
dating to the first century B.C.
The Chinese made paper by crushing hemp
fibers and mulberry tree bark into a pulp and
putting the mixture into a tank of water. The
tangled fibers rose to the top of the water,
were removed, and placed in a mold. After...