History of tobacco appearance in Europe. Part 1
Smoking itself (if to consider in this quality smoke inhaling from burning down plants) takes count from times immemorial. Frescos in Indian temples picture saint hermits that inhale smoke of aromatic incenses, remained images of special smoking pipes. Similar according to their destination pipes were found during nobles' disposition's excavation in Egypt, dated XXI-XVIII centuries B.C.E. Great Herodotus, describing Scythians' way of life and tempers, mentioned that they are appropriate of the habit to inhale smoke of burning plants. Such practice is fixed also in Chinese antique literature.
Exists supposition that smoking in form of inhaling the smokes of special plants (for example, hemp) appeared at Eurasia nations as attribute of ritual actions that help to release shaman's mind and reach special state of spirit. However, in spite of numerous evidences about such "leisure", there are no reasons to suppose that "incensing of smokes" was wide spread among usual population.
However such situation existed only till 1493, when the Old World has found about tobacco.
Indians who honored tobacco as sacred plant have presented pack of withered leaves to Columbus, teaching him at the same time the method of their smoking. On 15th March 1496 in Portugal Harbor has moored last ship of the second Columbus's expedition "El Nino", carrying on its board withered leaves of special herb for smoking. Herb was origin from province Tabago and was presented to Europeans under name "tobacco".
At the middle of XVI century tobacco is spread in Western Europe and Turkey where it is perfectly assimilated and gives perfect harvests. In XVII it penetrates Japan, China and other Asia countries. To the end of XVIII there is no country in the world where it wouldn't "exist".