The History of Hash


Todde Philips

🇺🇸 Retired veteran, father, rock-climbing expert & rosin connoisseur.

Hashish, the original solventless cannabis concentrate, has roots that reach back millennia. Hashish has traversed continents, cultures, and centuries, leaving a trail of cultural exchange and (more recently) clandestine trade in its wake. From its enigmatic origins to its modern-day evolution in both consumption and production, the story of hashish is as intricate and diverse as the civilizations that have embraced it.

Ancient Beginnings

One thing is for sure, people have always loved hash!

The history of hashish is shrouded in mystery, with its origins dating back to ancient civilizations in Central Asia. Wherever cannabis grew, it thrived and was utilized for various purposes. The relationship between cannabis and humans has been close-knit since recorded history began, with uses including textile production and medicinal applications. While the exact inception of hashish remains uncertain, historians concur that charas, the earliest form of hashish, emerged around 10,000 years ago. This resinous substance was meticulously collected from cannabis plants with bare hands and lots of patience. Hashishins still produce charas to this day.

The use of hashish transcended geographical boundaries, finding its way into the spiritual and medicinal practices of ancient cultures across Asia. In regions like Nepal, China, and North India, hashish was consumed for its therapeutic properties and revered in religious ceremonies. The Silk Road, a prominent trade network spanning from Asia to Europe, played a pivotal role in disseminating hashish, introducing it to civilizations along its route. As it journeyed westward, hashish became ingrained in the cultural fabric of societies such as the Roman Empire, Greece, and Egypt. 

As merchants traversed these routes, they carried with them not only goods but also cultural practices, including the use of hashish. This facilitated the exchange of knowledge and techniques related to cannabis cultivation and processing, playing a key role in its global dissemination.

By the 10th century, hashish had gained prominence in the Middle East, with references to its use appearing in literary works such as "One Thousand and One Nights." The term "hashish" itself made its debut during this era, signifying the resin's growing popularity. However, its association with the "Hashishins," a group of Nizari Muslim assassins, added a layer of intrigue to its narrative, leading to the etymology of the word "Assassin."

Hashish in the Western World

The introduction of hash-smoking to the Western world coincided with the spread of tobacco from the Americas in the 17th and 18th centuries. Despite initial disapproval from figures like Napoleon Bonaparte, hashish found acceptance among artistic circles, fueling its proliferation across Europe and beyond. Over time, regions like the Mediterranean emerged as significant producers of hashish, diversifying the global market.


In the early 20th century, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Greece, and Morocco dominated the global hashish trade, each contributing to its rich tapestry of varieties and production methods. Despite its enduring popularity, hashish faced increasing legal restrictions, driving its cultivation and distribution underground. However, with advancements in extraction techniques and shifting attitudes towards cannabis, hashish has undergone a renaissance of sorts, with modern varieties offering heightened potency and accessibility.


As the story of hashish unfolds, it reflects the complex interplay between culture, commerce, and legislation. From its ancient origins to its modern-day resurgence, hashish continues to captivate and divide societies, embodying both reverence and controversy. As nations grapple with the complexities of drug policy and legalization, the journey of hashish serves as a reminder of the enduring human quest for altered states of consciousness and the cultural significance imbued within the creation and use of psychoactive substances.

The methods of separating of trichome heads from cannabis plant material has evolved over time and will undoubtedly continue to evolve in the future. It's hard to see a better way of separating resin without the use of chemical solvents, other than the Ice Water Extraction process using bubble wash bags.  

For a premium Hash Washing experience, check out The Press Club's Hash Washing Bags. They're constructed with top quality materials for the durability and performance that the most discerning solventless extractors require. 

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