Was Shakespeare the OG Stoner?

William Shakespeare, the most popular playwright ever, is responsible for bringing school syllabi timeless classics and for penning some of the basic plot lines from which all movies are based upon. A new study is hinting that he may have had some special assistance in helping him write: pot. Scientists in South Africa are citing new evidence that suggest Shakespeare’s smoking habit may have helped his writing process.

Residue from tobacco pipes found in Shakespeare’s garden was deeply analyzed using a process called gas chromatography mass spectrometry. The process is apparently so sensitive that it can detect residue that may be 400 years old. The results revealed that 4 of the pipes found had traces of cannabis, and another 2 amazingly tested positive for Peruvian cocaine. Crack may be whack, but tell that to the man who wrote Hamlet, oft cited as the greatest work in English literature.

Scientists who believe that Shakespeare did indeed like to blaze are referencing a passage from ‘Sonnet 76‘ that reads “keep invention in a noted weed.” Does all this mean that he was #420 friendly? Possibly, but it’s near impossible to know for sure.

It’s highly plausible that Shakespeare liked to smoke weed while working — he was probably swamped with deadlines and overwhelmed by writer’s block. But this research definitely brings new context to the heated literary discussion of his highest achievement. Methinks that the gentleman doth smoke too much.

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