What is a Bong?

A beaker bong on a white backgroundBongs are a popular smoking device used for the inhalation of marijuana. Bongs come in many different sizes, styles, colors, and materials. Some are portable while other may be several feet tall. The variety allows smokers to find bongs that are unique and perfect for their needs.

Bongs are also commonly known as water pipes, as this is what they essentially are. A bong functions just like a regular pipe, only it uses water for smoke filtration. Bongs generally consist of two pieces: the round body and long tube that make up the body of the bong, and the stem which holds your chosen smoke.

To use a bong, all you need to do is fill it with water and pack the bowl. The marijuana is then lit, and the user must inhale through the mouthpiece in order to draw the smoke through the water and into the bong. Once the desired amount of smoke has filtered through the water, you simply remove the stem and draw the remaining smoke.

Bongs utilize water to filter many of the heavier particles from the smoke and prevent them from entering a smoker’s lungs. Bongs do not get rid of all of the harmful toxins entirely, but many users enjoy them because they make for a smoother smoke.

Bongs today come in many ornate and beautiful colors. However, the practice of decorating and embellishing bongs started well back during the Qing dynasty in China, where the Chinese merchant and noble classes would decorate their bronze or brass bongs with all sorts of jewels.

Bongs were introduced to China during the 16th century, and have also been used for hundreds of years in places such as Thailand and parts of Africa. In fact, the word “bong” comes from the Thai word “baung,” which was also used to refer to a water pipe that was used to smoke both hashish and the hemp plant.

Today, marijuana users have an abundance of methods to choose from when it comes to how they want to consume their bud. Recipes for yummy edibles are easily found with a simple Google search, and pen vaporizers are making marijuana use more portable than ever.

Does this mean that bongs are going to be phased out of the marijuana connoisseur’s repertoire of ingestion methods? Probably not. With its extensive history and easy of use, this looks like one piece of smoking equipment that can definitely stand the test of time.