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5 Ancient Uses of Hemp

Oct 21st 2020

5 Ancient Uses of Hemp

Not long ago, a common view held by society was that cannabis is primarily a recreational drug. With modern science beginning to understand CBD oil benefits and its effect on the endocannabinoid system and overall health, it’s easy to think that viewing the cannabis plant, hemp, as beneficial is a recent finding.

Long before cannabis oil was mass-produced, there were many hemp products dating as far back as history has been recorded. Carl Sagan commented, “It would be wryly interesting if in human history the cultivation of marijuana led generally to the invention of agriculture, and thereby to civilization,” speculating that hemp had a hand in creating civilization.1

Let’s explore 5 ways hemp has been used throughout history.


Hemp is a very fibrous plant. Its fibers have been used to make rope for ages. Evidence of hemp rope has dated back as far as 600 BCE, found in Southern Russia.1 This is not surprising. Hemp rope is incredibly strong. In terms of tensile and compressive strength, it is stronger than steel!2


People are still wearing clothing made from hemp today. Oddly enough, it’s not considered retro to wear an article of hemp clothing. Archeologists have found hemp cloth at a site in modern-day Iran and Iraq that was dated to be approximately 10,000 years old.3 The American colonies also used hemp to make their clothing. Hemp clothing was widely used in the states until cotton began to take over the industry with the invention of the cotton gin in 1793.3


Legend has it that in 105 AD, a Chinese court official, Ts’ai Lun, invented hemp paper by crushing hemp fibers and mixing them with mulberry tree bark. The mixture was placed into water and the combination that rose to the top was molded and dried into sheets of paper. The Chinese managed to keep their invention secret for centuries. Over time, hemp paper spread across the globe and became widely used.3


Hemp is an ancient food source. Signs that hemp seeds and hemp oil were used in food date back as far as 6000 BCE.1 People are still consuming hemp seeds in food worldwide, with good reason. Hemp seeds contain protein, a wide array of vitamins and nutrients, and the ideal ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids.3


The potential healing properties of cannabis have been known for a long time. In 2737 BCE, the Traditional Medicine Book of the Chinese emperor Shen Neng documents hemp to treat conditions such as malaria, rheumatism, and gout.1 Modern science and medicine are just now starting to understand the mechanisms and benefits of the healing properties of cannabis, but ancient cultures knew that hemp had wonderful medical uses.

Hemp In the Future

States have begun to legalize not only medicinal cannabis but recreational cannabis as well. CBD is currently legal in all 50 states. More and more research into the medicinal properties of cannabis is currently emerging, but that doesn’t mean you need to wait to see the CBD oil benefits. As you now know, using hemp for your health has been done for millennia.

At Complete Hemp, we offer skincare products with CBD, products for pain and skin relief with CBD, Hemp-derived CBD and CBG oils, and CBD oil for pets.

Whatever need you have for using CBD oil or CBD cream, Complete Hemp is here to help!