[Ads-l] Early cites for "edible(s)", n. (in the euphemistic/cannabinoid use)?

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Thu Feb 9 21:17:19 UTC 2023

Two examples from 1996 suggest the usage of nominal "edible" was
popularized around then by Dennis Peron, founder of the San Francisco
Cannabis Buyers Club, the first public marijuana dispensary in the U.S.

Press Democrat (Santa Rosa, Calif.), July 7, 1996, p. A8, col. 1
Welcome to the Cannabis Buyers Club. [...] Edibles cost $5 each. Tinctures
-- mixtures of marijuana and alcohol, typically vodka -- and gel-caps,
called merry pills, are available too.
Brownie Mary's Marijuana Cookbook / Dennis Peron's Recipe for Social Change
(1996), p. 66 (photo caption)
Brownies made with marijuana; also cookies, krispies and a host of
ailment-easing edibles.


On Thu, Feb 9, 2023 at 1:20 PM Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu> wrote:

> The OED entry still has just
>   An eatable substance, an article of food (chiefly in plural).
> 1661    R. Lovell  Panzoologicomineralogia sig. c4v   Birds, fishes, and
> other edibles.
> 1859    G. A. Sala Twice round Clock (1861) 357   The delightful hampers
> of edibles and drinkables.
> 1864    Daily Tel. 23 Dec.   What will be the effect of the introduction
> of this new edible?
> [where one assumes the Daily Telegraph didn’t have cannabis-infused
> substances in mind]
> And the AHD (which wouldn’t have dates anyway) still has the general
> meaning:
> Something fit to be eaten; food: *edibles such as vegetables and meat.*
> Unsurprisingly, urbandictionary has a relevant lemma in an entry from
> 2009, thanks to a contributor named Each Peach Pear Plum ('Short for
> marijuana edible: Any edible product that contains THC’), but I’m sure
> someone on the list can best that (with better authentication).
> Merriam-Webster online has a similar gloss ('any of various food items
> containing THC') and an undated cite, recorded or constructed ('Like
> alcohol, edibles can only be sold legally at licensed "dispensaries" to
> those 21 or older'). I can’t remember if we considered “edible" in
> Euphemism of the Year votes.
> LH

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