The Timeline: Tobacco
Tuesday 11 January 2011
5000BC: Ancient smoke
As early as 5000BC, tobacco was being smoked in the Americas. Mayan civilisation smoked and chewed tobacco from around 1000BC, mixing in herbs for medical use. Smoking a pipe was an important part of religious rituals.
1492: Europe lights up
When Christopher Columbus arrived on the continent, he was presented with tobacco leaves – and discarded them. Another explorer, Rodrigo de Jerez, landed in Cuba in 1492 and embraced the habit. Back in Spain, he demonstrated the technique, prompting claims that he was possessed by the devil. Spaniards started smoking while he was jailed for seven years.
1600: Smoke comes to the UK
At the start of the 17th century, tobacco was regularly imported to the UK. Legend has it that Sir Walter Raleigh presented Queen Elizabeth with a pipe, which made her so sick that she believed she had been poisoned. In 1604, James I imposed the first tax on tobacco.
1830: The cigarette is born
Cigars had become a popular method of smoking in the 1700s. This evolved into the cigarette by 1830, when the South American "papelate" was popularised in France .
First World War: Hard sell
The inclusion of cigarettes in Army rations hooked a generation of men. Advertising firms depicted cigarettes as glamorous and sophisticated, and females' consumption soared.
1950s: Health hazard
Scientists began to realise tobacco was harmful in the early 1800s, but it wasn't until 1908, when the Children's Act banned its sale to under-16s, that it became a public health issue. In the 1950s, health warnings began to appear.
1970-1990s: The tide turns
The 1970s saw smoking bans on public transport and in cinemas. In 1984 National No Smoking Day was launched. After the 1987 King's Cross fire, smoking and tobacco advertising was banned on the London Underground and in 1999, tobacco advertising was totally banned.
Coming soon: No smokers?
In 2004, Ireland became the first country to ban smoking in public places. In 2006, Scotland followed, joined in 2007 by England. In January 2011, a study by Citigroup revealed that if current trends continue there will be no smokers left in the UK in 30-50 years.
Life & Style blogs
- 1 Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
- 2 Expert urges cat lovers to own just one animal each
- 3 Sainsbury's '50p challenge' poster telling staff to encourage customers to spend more placed in shop window instead of staff room
- 4 Yes, the iPhone 6 is a miracle, but it's Apple's tax affairs that deserve a double take
- 5 Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
- < Previous
- Next >
Very Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: NORTH HAMPSHIRE NQ to MID LEVEL - An e...
Highly Attractive Pakage: Austen Lloyd: MANCHESTER - A highly attractive oppor...
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (Campaigns, Offlin...
£90000 - £135000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Marketing (B2C, Acquisition...