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Scientists discover earliest vestiges of opium use

Pottery excavated in Yehud, Israel, containing opium residues courting to the 14th century B.C., displayed on the Institute of Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem on September 20, 2022. The Israeli Antiquities Authority, Tel Aviv College, and the Weizmann Institute of Science current the world’s earliest proof of the Canaanites’ use of opium as an providing to the useless. Picture by Debbie Hill UPI | Licensed picture

September 20 (UPI) — Scientists have found the oldest identified residues of opioids, based on a research carried out at Tel Aviv College launched Tuesday.

Researchers have discovered the residue from a ceramic vessel present in Tel Yehud, a metropolis in Israel’s Central District.

The excavations have been carried out on the request of the Israel Antiquities Authority and the analysis was carried out in collaboration with the Weizmann Institute of Science.

Scientists have discovered opium residues in Canaanite tombs courting again to the 14th century BC.

Natural residue evaluation confirmed long-standing theories about opium use. His eight vintage vessels discovered inside are formed like poppy flowers.

“That is the one psychotropic drug discovered within the Levant through the Late Bronze Age. In 2020, researchers discovered hashish residues at an altar in Tel Arad, which dates again to the Iron Age. Tel Yehud stated Vanessa Linares, principal investigator at Tel Aviv College, in a press release.

“Opium was present in burial grounds, so it provides us a glimpse into the burial practices of the traditional world. In fact, we have no idea what the position of opium within the ceremony was. I do not know, the useless will want opium within the afterlife, and even when it was the priest who consumed the opium for ritual functions.”

There are a number of theories relating to the precise use of medicine throughout burial procedures.

“Throughout these ceremonies, carried out by relations or by clergymen on their behalf, individuals try to boost the spirits of their deceased kinfolk with a view to specific their calls for, and use opium to enter a state of trance. It could have entered,” stated Ron Bailey, a college member of the Israeli Antiquities Division, in a press release.

“Alternatively, the opium positioned subsequent to the corpse might have been meant to assist the particular person’s soul rise from the grave in preparation for assembly kinfolk within the afterlife.”

Linares, whose doctoral dissertation led to the invention, stated it additionally provides extra perception into drug use exterior of burial.

“This discovery sheds gentle on the opium commerce usually. It must be remembered that opium is produced from poppies grown in Asia Minor, the territory of present-day Turkey. In different phrases, opium was transported from Turkey to Yefud by Cyprus,” she stated in a press release.