First I wish to point out that I am not criticising or promoting drug use, I do not want to get dragged into the whole drugs argument. This is purely the result of reading I did for my own interest. This is also focusing on historical figures rather than present day celebrities which anybody can read about in the papers.
- Admiral Horatio Nelson: the Admiral suffered from an opium addiction throughout his later years in the navy.
- Lord Liverpool British prime minister : ether addiction.
- Clive of India: another one who suffered from opium addiction.
- Sigmund Freud: he had a habit with cocaine.
- Czar Nicholas II: The last Russian Czar spent the last two years of his reign on a cocktail of drugs. He took cocaine (for his colds), opium and morphine for his stomach complaints and he obtained hallucinogens from a herbalist. Visitors often commented on his gaunt appearance, dull eyes and his vacant smile.
- Sir Winston Churchill: The famous British prime minister was given large amounts of chemical stimulants by his personal physician Lord Moran. In the 1950s he became totally dependent on barbiturates – even more so after his stroke in 1953, often mixing them with copious amounts of alcohol. Churchill had names for these drugs – majors, minors, reds, greens and Lord Moran’s.
- Anthony Eden, British prime minister: It is suspected that Eden became dependent on amphetamines during a blockage of his biliary tract in the early 1950s. He always had a box about his person which contained various things including morphine. During the Suez crisis Eden admitted to “practically living on Benzedrine”. However the regular doses of amphetamines can lead to paranoia, and by 1956 Eden had become obsessed with the Egyptian President Nasser – according to close friends Eden believed that Nasser was the reincarnation of Adolf Hitler.
- Hermann Göring, Nazi Commander-in-Chief of the Luftwaffe: He spent a large period of his life on drugs, he spent most of World War II in a narcotic stupor. In 1925 the Swedish authorities declared Göring a dangerous drug addict and locked him in an asylum where he attacked a nurse after she refused to give him morphine. By 1937 he was hooked on codeine which is found in painkillers and cough tablets. When he was captured in 1945 he was taking roughly 100 tablets a day. It is suspected that he also took cocaine.