A cigarette, also known colloquially as a fag in
The term cigarette, as commonly used, refers to a tobacco cigarette but is sometimes used to refer to other substances, such as a
Smoking rates have generally declined in the
Cigarette use by pregnant women has also been shown to cause
The earliest forms of cigarettes were similar to their predecessor, the cigar. Cigarettes appear to have had antecedents in Mexico and Central America around the 9th century in the form of reeds and smoking tubes. The
The North American, Central American, and South American cigarette used various plant wrappers; when it was brought back to Spain, maize wrappers were introduced, and by the 17th century, fine paper. The resulting product was called papelate and is documented in
By 1830, the cigarette had crossed into France, where it received the name cigarette; and in 1845, the French state tobacco monopoly began manufacturing them. The French word was adopted by English in the 1840s. Some American reformers promoted the spelling cigaret, but this was never widespread and is now largely abandoned.
The first patented cigarette-making machine was invented by Juan Nepomuceno Adorno of Mexico in 1847. However, production climbed markedly when another cigarette-making machine was developed in the 1880s by
In the English-speaking world, the use of tobacco in cigarette form became increasingly widespread during and after the
Cigarettes may have been initially used in a manner similar to
The widespread smoking of cigarettes in the Western world is largely a 20th-century phenomenon. At the start of the 20th century, the per capita annual consumption in the U.S. was 54 cigarettes (with less than 0.5% of the population smoking more than 100 cigarettes per year), and consumption there peaked at 4,259 per capita in 1965. At that time, about 50% of men and 33% of women smoked (defined as smoking more than 100 cigarettes per year). By 2000, consumption had fallen to 2,092 per capita, corresponding to about 30% of men and 22% of women smoking more than 100 cigarettes per year, and by 2006 per capita consumption had declined to 1,691; implying that about 21% of the population smoked 100 cigarettes or more per year.
The adverse health effects of cigarettes were known by the mid-19th century when they became known as coffins nails. German doctors were the first to identify the link between smoking and
The United States has not implemented graphical cigarette warning labels, which are considered a more effective method to communicate to the public the dangers of cigarette smoking. Canada, Mexico, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Pakistan, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Greece, the Netherlands,[
The cigarette has evolved much since its conception; for example, the thin bands that travel transverse to the "axis of smoking" (thus forming circles along the length of the cigarette) are alternate sections of thin and thick paper to facilitate effective burning when being drawn, and retard burning when at rest. Synthetic particulate filters may remove some of the tar before it reaches the smoker.
The "holy grail" for cigarette companies has been a cancer-free cigarette. On record, the closest historical attempt was produced by scientist James Mold. Under the name project TAME, he produced the XA cigarette. However, in 1978, his project was terminated.
Since 1950, the average nicotine and tar content of cigarettes has steadily fallen. Research has shown that the fall in overall nicotine content has led to smokers inhaling larger volumes per puff.