For hundreds of years, cigar smoking has been associated with wealth, class, and distinction. So, it’s no surprise that some of the most influential figures in history have also been cigar aficionados. Let’s take a quick peed at five famous men who took great pride in puffing the finest cigars.
1. Fidel Castro
Even non-smokers know about Cuba’s legendary cigar heritage. So, it’s no surprise one of Cuba’s most prominent figures was one of the world’s most photographed cigar fans. Yes, President Fidel Castro supposedly smoked cigars from his boyhood until he turned 59. Amazingly, the Communist revolutionary decided to quit his cherished habit late in life for fear that smoking would shorten his lifespan. Castro never smoked another cigar for the remaining 31 years of his life.
2. Mark Twain
In American literature, few figures loom as large as Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain). Well, it turns out the author of Huckleberry Finn was also one of America’s most famous cigar enthusiasts. Twain once wrote that he didn’t care if cigar smoking took ten years off of his life because a decade without tobacco would be “trivial and valueless.” Some experts believe Twain smoked as many as 40 cigars per day.
3. Winston Churchill
Prime Minister Winston Churchill will always be remembered for his courage, charisma…and, of course, his cigars! Yes, one of the UK’s most celebrated leaders was a huge fan of cigars, sometimes smoking ten stogies per day. But Churchill couldn’t smoke just any old cigar. After he first got his hands on authentic Cubans, Churchill ensured he had a steady supply of the finest Cuban brands for the rest of his life. One of Churchill’s favorite blends—La Aroma de Cuba—remains one of Cuba’s most prized cigars.
4. Sigmund Freud
The father of psychoanalysis was another one of history’s great cigar lovers. Historians estimate Freud enjoyed about 20 cigars per day from young adulthood till his death at the age of 83. Even after going through multiple surgeries for jaw cancer, Freud claimed cigars enhanced his creative powers and led to many of his most significant breakthroughs. But it wasn’t only cigars that Freud was into. Early in his career, Freud was one of Vienna’s leading supporters of cocaine. Although Freud’s high opinion of cocaine diminished as he got older, he frequently used the drug for minor aches and pains.
5. Groucho Marx
When you look for images of Groucho Marx, you’re bound to see pics of the great comedian with a cigar in his mouth. Allegedly, Marx started smoking as a teen when he was getting into live performing. So the story goes, Marx only used cigar smoking to buy him some time as he tried to remember his lines. Although Marx is often photographed with a cigar, he wasn’t a chain smoker. Usually, the legendary entertainer enjoyed one or two cigars per day after meals.
Five Cigar Fans For The Ages
Even in the 21st century, the five men listed above remain the world’s most iconic cigar smokers. It’s difficult to picture any of the men on this list without also seeing a cigar. Whether they enjoyed cigars on occasion or over 20 times a day, each of these gentlemen deserves his place in the pantheon of cigar smokers.