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By definition, the Shisha -- also known as "nargeeleh," "nargile," "or Argilah" is simply a water pipe used to smoke tobacco. Most likely, it was introduced to Turkey from India. That was in the second half of the fourteenth century. However, it seems that nobody is quite sure how long before that it was known to the Indians. Some references claim that Persia was its origin that exported it to Turkey, where it has provided centuries of enjoyment to Turkish smokers and spread from there to other countries.
Regardless of whether its origin was Persia or India, once the Shisha reached Turkey its route was destined travel to neighbouring Arab countries - Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Egypt. At each stop along the shisha's hazy path, it has developed into a more sophisticated apparatus. It went from the rudimentary coconut-and-straw look of its Indian roots to its current form, which is essentially a glass vessel with hoses to smoke from attached to the body, a head that holds tobacco and hot coals and a straw that runs from the head through the vessel.
The shisha hit its heyday during the Ottoman Empire in the early 1600s. With the introduction of tobacco to Turkey, a coffeehouse culture centred on smoking sprung up throughout the country.
Shishas eventually became a novelty in Anglo cultures as well. The British were big fans, and they even popped up in the United States during the 1930s and '60s. Even recently, new shops catering for the needs of shisha smokers have popped up in many parts of the world, with prices ranging between 20$ for the basic one and up to thousands of dollars for fancy crystal ones with golden mouth pieces and golden holders of the clay part.

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