The Evolution of Cannabis Slang Terminology

If it’s true that the best-loved child has many names, cannabis must be one of Mother Earth’s favorite children. Jonathon Green, who wrote the definitive Green’s Dictionary of Slang, estimates that there are at least 1,000 different names for weed – and that’s just in English. Have you ever wondered where pot, bud, joint and other names for weed came from? Check out this compilation of slang for weed to find out.

Why Are There So Many Names for Weed?
Considering its checkered history, it’s not surprising that weed has had many aliases. The plant that’s officially known as cannabis sativa (or cannabis indica, depending on your point of reference) was illegal for the better part of the 20th century, and is still illegal, either for all uses or for some uses, in many U.S. states and in other countries. Those who indulged couldn’t just openly talk about buying or smoking marijuana where others might overhear, so they came up with creative code names for weed. Of course, it didn’t take long for those names to become known, which meant coming up with other names for weed. Add in the human propensity for assigning affectionate nicknames to people and substances that make them feel good, and you have the perfect staging ground to launch a veritable dictionary of slang for weed and everything concerning it.

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