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This article is about a preparation of cannabis leaves and flowers. For the similarly-named cannabis pipe, see Bong.
Process of making bhang into a drink
A bhang shop in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan
Woman selling cannabis and bhang in Guwahati, Assam, India

Bhang (Hindi: भांग) is an edible preparation of cannabis used in food and drink in the Indian subcontinent. Using mortar and pestle, the buds and leaves of cannabis are ground into a paste. To this mixture, milk, ghee and spices are added. The bhang base is now ready to be made into a heavy drink, thandai, an alternative to alcohol; this is often referred to casually, if inaccurately[citation needed], as a "bhang thandai" and "bhang lassi". Bhang is also mixed with ghee and sugar to make a purple halva, and into peppery, chewy little balls called 'golee' (which in this context means candy or pill in Hindi).[1]

In some sections of rural India, people attribute various medicinal properties to the cannabis plant. If taken in proper quantity, bhang is believed to cure fever, dysentery, sunstroke, to clear phlegm, aid in digestion, appetite, cure speech imperfections and lisping, and give alertness to the body.

Indian subcontinent[edit]

Bhang has been used as an intoxicant for centuries in the Indian subcontinent.


Bhang has been used in India since Vedic times, and is an integral part of North Indian culture. Sadhus make use of the amazing effects of bhang to boost meditation and to achieve transcendental states.

In 1596, Dutchman Jan Huyghen van Linschoten wrote 3 pages on "Bangue" in a work documenting his journeys in the East, also mentioning the Egyptian Hashish, Turkish Boza, Turkish Bernavi, and Arabic Bursj forms of consumption.[2]

The historian Richard Davenport-Hines lists Thomas Bowrey as the first Westerner to document the use of bhang.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Burnell, Arthur Coke & Tiele, P.A (1885). The voyage of John Huyghen van Linschoten to the East Indies. from the old English translation of 1598: the first book, containing his description of the East. London: The Hakluyt Society. pp. 115–117.  Full text at Internet Archive. Chapter on Bangue.
  3. ^ Davenport-Hines, Richard (2001). The pursuit of oblivion: A global history of narcotics 1500—2000. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. pp. 1–2. ISBN 0297643754. 

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