King, Sultan, pope crack down on smoking





...[O]pposition to smoking has been around almost as long as smoking itself, and some of the historical measures to curb lighting up might surprise you.

1. The Pope cracks down on smoke

Pope Urban VII's papacy began on September 15, 1590. It ended with his death from malaria less than two weeks later.

Although he didn't spend much time as the head of the Catholic Church, Urban VII was around long enough to make his feelings on tobacco known. He banned all tobacco "in the porchway of or inside a church, whether it be by chewing it, smoking it with a pipe or sniffing it in powdered form through the nose....

2. King James' ideal version of England is smoke-free

King James I of England was no fan of tobacco, but instead of whining about it, he picked up his pen. In 1604, James wrote the treatise "A Counterblaste to Tobacco", and true to form for early 17th century pamphlets, the king didn't pull any punches, writing, "What honour or policie can move us to imitate the barbarous and beastly maners of the wilde, godlesse, and slavish Indians, especially in so vile and stinking a custom?"...

3. The Sultan puts out smokers

When Sultan Murad IV took over the Ottoman Empire in 1623, he inherited a land filled with corruption and decadence. He took care of it quickly, though, and by 1633 Murad had banned all tobacco, alcohol, and coffee from his empire. Murad IV made Pope Urban VII look like a pushover, too; his punishment for breaking the ban was death....



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