/ təbækoʊ /
Prevedi tobacco na: francuski · nemački
ETYM Spanish tabaco, from the Indian tabaco the tube or pipe in which the Indians or Caribbees smoked this plant. Some derive the word from Tabaco, a province of Yucatan, where it was said to be first found by the Spaniards.
1. Aromatic annual or perennial herbs and shrubs.
2. Leaves of the tobacco plant dried and prepared for smoking or ingestion; SYN. baccy.
Any large-leaved plant of the genus Nicotiana of the nightshade family Solanaceae, native to tropical parts of the Americas. Nicotiniana tabacum is widely cultivated in warm, dry climates for use in cigars and cigarettes, and in powdered form as snuff.
The leaves are cured, or dried, and matured in storage for two to three years before use. Introduced to Europe as a medicine in the 16th century, tobacco was recognized from the 1950s as a major health hazard; see cancer. The leaves also yield the alkaloid nicotine, a colorless oil, one of the most powerful poisons known, and addictive in humans. It is used in insecticides.
Worldwide, the tobacco conglomerations reap $6 billion net each year in profit. In the US, a Supreme Court decision 1992 ruled that tobacco companies can be held legally responsible for the hazardous effects of smoking on health; conglomerations spend $50 million a year on legal advice to avoid paying out compensation to victims.