ABSTRACT

But coca and cocaine, respectively, were never conclusively stabilized. ese substances and the narratives that attached meaning to them and their e ects travelled through numerous networks and across quite di erent contexts and elds of interest. ere was also much hype surrounding coca and cocaine in both popular culture and the beverage industry, especially since the 1880s. A very popular coca wine had been produced and sold commercially since 1863 under the name of Vin Mariani. Pope Leo XIII and Queen Victoria were but two of many public gures who wrote a thank-you letter to Angelo Mariani for a free sample of Vin Mariani. e letters and pictures of these persons were used by Mariani to promote his coca wine. But Mariani’s product was just the most popular among many other coca wines in the 1880s. In the US city of Atlanta,

John Smith Pemberton had made a name for himself as a producer of a prosperous coca wine and several remedies. Confronted with laws on prohibition, he had the idea of creating a beverage that would boost power and prevent headaches. Hence, he concocted a so drink out of coca and cola nut extracts mixed with syrup and water. is new drink would later be sold in drug stores under the name of Coca-Cola. Around the same time, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous detective, Sherlock Holmes, also began consuming cocaine in Th e Sign of the Four in order to enhance his thinking and acting. And it was not just human beings who began using cocaine to increase their performance – racehorses too were ‘doped’ with cocaine.4