posted on Jun, 11 2012 @ 07:53 AM
Originally posted by fraterormus
Tobacco is indigenous to Europe and China, so that provides a reasonable explanation for the presence of tobacco in Egyptian Mummies.
Excuse me? Please explain to an amateur botanist how you reached that conclusion, based on what research and actual proof.
There may be a few Tobacco-related plants (belonging to the Solanaceae family) growing in Europe and China, but all species of Tobacco are indigenous
to North and South America, Australia and the South Pacific.
None to Europe and China.
The only reason Balabanova speculated
(she has not done any research and she hasn't proven a thing) that there could have been Tobacco in
ancient Europe and China is because we find Nicotine in European and Chinese mummies as well. The logic behind this reasoning is; since we find
Nicotine in European and Chinese mummies, it must
have been growing there (even though any experienced botanist can tell you it isn't so),
which explains why Nicotine is found in Egyptian mummies. It's a house of cards reasoning based on assumptions.
Some alternative theories could perhaps explain the presence of Nicotine in Euroasian mummies.
Isolated voyagers travelled between continents and brought back the Tobacco plant to the Euroasian contient, where it was cultivated on a small scale,
only to die out at one point. This could explain why botany fails to pick up the trace of any general pre-columbian presence of Tobacco on the
continent (so far).
The Nicotine comes from another source than Tobacco. The most likely culprit in this case is probably Belladonna (Nightshade), which contains high
concentrations of Nicotine, and was used as a medicinal plant in Egypt and Europe. Although I personally believe that a qualified chemist (such as
Balabanova) should be able to identify the source (of the Nicotine).
edit on 11-6-2012 by Heliocentric because: Autumn moonlight – a worm
digs silently into the chestnut.