Opium found in Israel, at Canaanite dig dating back 3.500 yrs

"The oldest evidence found, confirming the use of narcotics"

21 September, 12:01

    (ANSAmed) - TEL AVIV, 21 SEPTEMBER - Traces of opium were found inside clay pottery at an archaeological Canaanite dig, dating back to 3.500 years ago. The Israeli newspaper Haaretz writes about it, citing research conducted by the Weizman Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, by the Department of Antiquities and by the University of Tel Aviv.

    In the past, as noted by the daily, the discovery of cannabis at Hebrew pray site in Tel Arad (in the Negev desert) was cause of sensation. The find dated back 2.700 years. The latest discovery, according to Israeli experts, "represents the oldest evidence of the use of narcotics". The site is at Tel Yahud, not far from Tel Aviv. In 2017 Canaanite tombs dating back to the bronze age were found. Next to the remains of the tombs, the various pottery objects, among them - according to Haaretz - some were reminiscent of an upside down poppy flower". A test of organic remains taken from eight of those small vases (partially originating from Cyprus) revealed that they had in fact contained opium. According to Dr. Ron Beeri, of the Antiquities Department, it is possible that opium was used for funeral rituals, or that "it was left with the dead person to help him in the passage to the world of the dead". (ANSAmed).

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