StampNews.com hurries to inform our readers that Croatian Post Mostar has released a special stamp dedicated to hemp – one of the sacred plants in many world religions. This plant is often mentioned in Croatian myths, that is why this item was issued as a part of Myths and Flora stamp series. The issue was released and put into circulation on the 22d of May.
Hemp (Cannabis) is an annual herbaceous plant from the Cannabaceae family, which three subspecies belong to: Cannabis sativa (industrial hemp), Cannabis indica (Indian hemp) and Cannabis ruderalis (ruderal hemp). Its name was created in the Far East, from ancient Indian bhang and Assyrian-Babylon qunnabu through the Greek kannabic to Germanic hanapiz. Hemp, which was cultivated in China before ten thousand years ago, has become the most important raw in the textile, construction and marine industry.
The first book was printed on the hemp paper in 1455, known as Gutenberg Bible, as well as the American Declaration of Independence in 1776. Hemp has leaves like a fist and it was believed that it is of divine origin. According to the legend Buddha, on his way to the enlightenment, fed with hemp seeds. Another legend states that hemp was found on the king Salomon's tomb. On the excavations site of Beit Shemeshu near Jerusalem, in the tomb of one woman (1500 BC), remains of hemp were found. Archaeologists assume that woman died in childbirth, while they gave her hemp in order to facilitate the birth pangs.
Hemp is one of the sacred plants in many religions throughout human history. In ancient Germanic culture, it was associated with the goddess of love Frey, for which was believed to live in the female flowers of cannabis. In magical works hemp serves for combating with evil forces and demons, storms and hail. If hemp shirt was weaved in one day, whose yarn was called tow, it protected even form deadly plague. In folk medicine it was used against fever, shortness of breath and stomach pain. Folk legend about buried treasure in Herzegovina was popular and the treasure will be first found by the poor girl who knitted shirt from black hemp (cannabis).