Phantastica: A Classic Survey on the Use and Abuse of Mind-Altering Plants

Front Cover
Inner Traditions / Bear & Co, 1998 - Medical - 288 pages
Long out of print, this is a landmark study on narcotic and psychedelic substances by a world-renowned pharmacologist and toxicologist

• The first book to bring non-judgmental scientific insights to the use of drugs around the world

• Provides detailed information on all major drugs of the time, including opium, cocaine, heroin, cannabis, peyote, fly agaric, henbane, datura, alcohol, kava, betel, coffee, tea, cocoa, and tobacco

• A book credited with starting an era of ethnobotany that continues to the present day

The publication of Louis Lewin's Phantastica in 1924 began an era of ethnobotany that is still flourishing today. Until Lewin, books on the use of drugs were purely works of anthropology, concerned with how people used these plants, rather than how the plants produced their famous effects. Lewin, a world-renowned pharmacologist and toxicologist, was fascinated by both, and Phantastica was the first book to bring scientific insights to a survey of the use of drugs around the world. Lewin traveled extensively and acquired an astonishing variety of knowledge, reflected in this book, which provides detailed information on all major drugs of the time, including opium, cocaine, heroin, cannabis, peyote, fly agaric, henbane, datura, alcohol, kava, betel, coffee, tea, cocoa, and, of course, tobacco. For thirty years ethnobotanists have bemoaned the fact that Phantastica has been impossible to find; now this landmark work is once again available.
 

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Contents

NARCOTIC SUBSTANCES
23
CLASSIFICATION OF NARCOTIC AND STIMULATING DRUGS
26
MENTAL SEDATIVES
27
The Consumption of Opium and Morphia at the Present Day
39
Morphinism
45
The Observable Internal Process in Morphinists and Opiumists
49
General Questions Connected with Morphinism
53
Measures against the Extension of Morphinism
56
NITROUS OXIDE
171
SOPORIFICS
172
CHLORAL
174
VERONAL
176
PARALDEHYDE
177
SULPHONAL
178
Bromural
179
Where and How KavaKava is Drunk
180

DIONINE HEROIN EUCODAL CHLORODYNE
60
Dionine
61
Eucodal
62
COCAINISM
63
Effects of the Habitual Use of Coca and Cocaine
65
Cocainomania and its Forms
67
HALLUCINATING SUBSTANCES
75
ANHALONIUM LEWINII
80
Its Uses
82
Hallucinations due to Peyotl
84
CANNABIS INDICA
89
The Extension of Cannabinism in Africa
92
The Use of Hemp in Asia Minor and Asia
95
The Effects of Indian Hemp
97
AGARICUS MUSCARIUS
102
Character of Agaric Inebriety
103
SOLANACEAE
107
Henbane Hyoscyamus niger
108
Hyoscyamus muticus Hyoscyamus albus
109
Datura arborea
113
Duboisia hopwoodii
115
BANISTERIA CAAPI
116
GELSEMIUM SEMPERVIRENS
119
THE LOCO HERBS
120
IMEBRIANTIA
122
Chronic Alcoholism
125
Alcoholism and Heredity
126
Individual Toxic Disturbances in Alcoholism
131
A Glance at Alcohol in the Past
132
Alcoholic Beverages
138
Temperance and Abstinence
148
Conclusion
159
LIQUOR HOFFMANNI
161
ETHER
165
BENZINE
169
Preparation and Use of KavaKava
182
The Active Substances of Kava and their Action
185
KANNA
187
EXCITANTIA
189
CAMPHOR
190
BETEL
192
History and Mode of Chewing Betel
194
Effect of BetelChewing
197
KAT
201
CAFFEINE PLANTS
203
COFFEE
205
Cultivation and Use
209
Effects of Coffee
211
TEA
216
THE KOLA NUT
223
Effects of Kola
226
MATÉ
229
ILEX CASSINE
231
PASTA GUARANA
233
COCOA
234
TOBACCO
237
Its Modes of Employment
241
Chewing
245
Smoking
247
The Conquest of Mankind by Tobacco
249
Its Good and Evil Effects
253
Physical Disturbances due to Tobacco
258
Substitutes for Tobacco
262
PARICA
265
ARSENIC
266
MERCURY
270
CONCLUSION
271
NOTES
274
INDEX
282
Copyright

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About the author (1998)

Louis Lewin, M.D., (1850-1929) was the author of more than 200 major publications on the subject of pharmacology, including 12 books. He was the first researcher to study peyote with the Native Americans and the first to publish a monograph on kava. He directed a private laboratory in Berlin, and he was considered the leading toxicologist in Germany.

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