c. 425 BCE
Greek historian Herodotus records cannabis use among the Scythian people of western Asia

Herodotus reports on a post-funeral ritual among the Scythian people which involves a cannabis vapour-bath. He writes: "After the burial the Scythians cleanse themselves as follows: they anoint and wash their heads and, for their bodies, set up three poles leaning together to a point and cover these over with wool mats; then, in the space so enclosed to the best of their ability, they make a pit in the center beneath the poles and the mats and throw red-hot stones into it. They have hemp growing in their country, very like flax, except that the hemp is much thicker and taller [...] The Scythians then take the seed of this hemp and, crawling in under the mats, throw it on the red-hot stones, where it smoulders and sends forth such fumes that no Greek vapor-bath could surpass it. The Scythians howl in their joy at the vapor-bath."

Source: Herodotus (1920). The Histories. Book 4, Chapters 73-75. Cambridge: Harvard Univ. Press.

Drugs: Cannabis (marijuana)
Regions: Middle East, Iran
Topics: Cultural factors (social, religious, ritual)