January 14, 2024

List of Marijuana Slang Terms

January 14, 2024
Cannabis slang terms

As we all know, marijuana is celebrated worldwide and embraced by a culture filled with enthusiasts, and it often goes by various slang terms. Grasping these terms becomes crucial, especially when immersing yourself in stoner culture. Knowing how to respond when someone asks if you want to ‘blaze’ proves essential. This guide aims to demystify the vast array of marijuana slang, ensuring you’re not perplexed the next time your friends talk about hanging out with Mary Jane for a brief moment.

The Origins of Marijuana Slang

Marijuana slang has proliferated, primarily due to the prohibition of cannabis. The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, marking the beginning of this prohibition, focused more on taxation than outright banning. However, it faced unconstitutionality in 1969 in Leary v. United States for promoting self-incrimination. By 1970, the U.S. had classified marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance.

John Ehrlichman, President Nixon’s senior advisor, disclosed in 1994 how the Nixon administration used marijuana criminalization strategically to disrupt groups seen as adversaries. Ehrlichman stated:

“The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and black people. You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.”

He admitted to associating marijuana with these groups to vilify and disrupt them, knowing well the falsehoods spread about the drug.

Despite advances in legalization, with 47 states legalizing weed in some form, the stigma and racism intertwined in cannabis prohibition persist, necessitating the continued use of marijuana slang terms for discreet communication.

Marijuana Slang and Racial Prejudice

The term “marihuana” has a complex history interwoven with racial prejudices, particularly against Latino communities. In the early 20th century, as the United States experienced significant Mexican immigration due to social and political turmoil from the Mexican Revolution, negative sentiments and xenophobia towards these new arrivals were rampant. The cannabis plant, commonly known as “marihuana” in Mexico, became a focal point of this animosity. U.S. authorities and media began to associate the use of marihuana with Mexican immigrants, painting it as a dangerous drug that led to insanity, violence, and criminal behavior. This association was not based on scientific evidence or public health concerns but was a tool for racial discrimination, aiming to stigmatize and control the Mexican immigrant population. The term “marihuana” itself was used deliberately to alienate the substance from the familiar “cannabis,” making it sound foreign and sinister, thus amplifying racial fears.

Legislation and Discrimination

The propaganda against marihuana and its racial undertones were further institutionalized through legislation and law enforcement practices. The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 effectively criminalized the possession and sale of cannabis, but its enforcement disproportionately targeted Mexican Americans and other minority communities. Newspapers and politicians of the era contributed to a climate of fear, using the term “marihuana” to invoke images of moral decay and social disorder allegedly brought by these communities. This period marked the beginning of the drug war’s racialized policies, which have had long-lasting impacts on Latino communities and other people of color. By labeling cannabis with a term that emphasized its “otherness,” the U.S. government fostered an environment of discrimination and inequality that persisted, reinforcing stereotypes and contributing to the systemic marginalization of Latinos.

How Extensive is Weed Terminology?

Understanding marijuana slang is not only essential for seasoned users but also offers an intriguing perspective for newcomers. The U.S. showcases a vast array of these terms, reflecting the diverse ways cannabis is referred to globally. Here’s an extensive list of the most common and popular marijuana slang terms, providing insight into the rich terminology of cannabis culture.

List of Marijuana and Cannabis Slang Terms (alphabetical order):

  1. Assassin of Youth – A term from a 1937 film, used negatively to refer to marijuana.
  2. Aunt Mary – Refers to stale weed, akin to old kush.
  3. Bash – Cannabis sprayed with a substance to increase its weight.
  4. Bazooka – A popular strain of cannabis.
  5. Blunt – Cannabis rolled in a cigar wrapper, popularized in New York.
  6. Burning bush – A biblical reference, also a top-quality slang for smoking cannabis.
  7. Chronic – Snoop Dogg’s term for top-quality cannabis, originally a misunderstanding of ‘hydroponic’.
  8. Cabbage – Refers to the buds of the cannabis plant.
  9. Dank – A term for high-quality cannabis, also used to describe something excellent.
  10. Dope – A versatile term used differently across regions and generations.
  11. Doobie – Possibly derived from ‘Scooby-Doo’, refers to a cannabis joint.
  12. Fatty – A large joint or blunt.
  13. Flower – The bud of the cannabis plant, useful for discreet conversations.
  14. Ganja – A term with origins in India, synonymous with cannabis.
  15. Grass – Popular in the 60s and 70s, often referred to lower quality cannabis.
  16. Herb – A term emphasizing the natural aspects of cannabis.
  17. Joint – Ground cannabis rolled in paper, a global staple.
  18. Kush – A strain of indica cannabis from the Middle East.
  19. Mary Jane – A universally recognized term for marijuana.
  20. Pot – Derived from Spanish potiguaya, meaning ‘the drink of grief’.
  21. Reefer – A term with origins in nautical language.
  22. Spliff – A roll containing both tobacco and cannabis.
  23. Stash – A hidden supply of pot.
  24. Sticky Icky – A term for high-quality, resinous weed.
  25. Weed – A term for cannabis, emphasizing its undesired status in the past.
  26. 420 – A code for cannabis use, originating from a group of high school students in 1971.
  27. 710 – A code celebrating cannabis concentrates and dabbing.


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