Many plants, primarily conifers, have the ability to secrete resin, which protects against the penetration of harmful microorganisms into tissue cells. At the same time, the resin retains its bactericidal properties for a very long time. For example, pine resin was part of a substance used to embalm corpses in ancient Egypt. Even after three thousand years, according to scientists, it continued to have a bactericidal effect.
10 interesting facts about pine resin
- In the first century AD, the famous Roman physician Celsus compiled a treatise "On Medicine", which describes a number of diseases and medicinal substances. Among them, Celsus also mentions pine resin
- According to one version, the name of the city of Smolensk comes from the word "resin". The first mention of it dates back to 863. The main occupation of the inhabitants of these places was tar-smoking. There was a trade route "from the Varangians to the Greeks". The resin was used to impregnate ships and boats, which gave them better impermeability and also protected them from harmful insects. Pines grew in abundance in the vicinity of Smolensk.
- Tar smoking retained its importance in our country even in the 19th century. The inhabitants of the forest provinces were engaged in this trade. Pine trunks were used as raw materials, as well as stumps and roots that remained after deforestation. All this was loaded into special Maidan pits, a fire was made from above, under the influence of heat, the resin flowed into the containers along the drain pipe. The work of the resin was not easy, but it made it possible to earn up to 80 rubles per season. For many peasants, this was a serious help to the family budget.
- In the regions where this trade was widespread, the name Smolokurov was encountered quite often. For example, in the novel by P. I. Melnikov-Pechersky this surname is borne by the rich merchant Marko Danilych Smolokurov, whose father, Danilo Klementyev, had up to a dozen cauldrons in the Murom forests, in which they "smoked tar". But Marko Danilych himself did not continue his father's business, deciding to engage in the fish trade.
- Resin has been an important export item for Russia for many years. Suffice it to say that a state monopoly was introduced on the export of resin, as well as on furs. But, for a fixed fee, foreigners could be granted a concession to export this valuable product. For example, in 1636, Julius Williken from Holland received the right to a monopoly trade for a period of five years. For five years, he contributed to the state treasury of Russia an impressive amount - 2, 750 rubles.
- The fresh pine resin that is released from the cuts of a tree is often called sap because it can heal or "heal" the plant. It serves as a raw material for the manufacture of rosin and turpentine. When distilling resin, about 2/3 of the mass is rosin, the rest goes into turpentine - a liquid mixture used in medicine, the chemical industry and veterinary medicine. And rosin is used in the manufacture of paper, rubber, synthetic rubber, as well as a flux for soldering and tinning.
- Rosin is also used for rubbing the bow of stringed bowed instruments - violin, cello, double bass. This is done to better grip the bow with the strings. Moreover, the rosin for these instruments differs in composition. For example, a violinist is absolutely not suitable for a cello. The more massive the strings, the softer the rosin should be used.
- In the 21st century, the profession called the breeder has become so rare that many have simply never heard of it. This was the name of a seasonal worker who, using a special hack tool, made cuts on a tree trunk and installed special containers into which the resin would flow. despite the fact that the lifters worked in the fresh air, their work could not be called easy, more than one hundred trees had to be processed in a day.
- Pine resin is widely used in folk medicine. It is used in the treatment of various suppurations, burns, colds and so on. A small wound or cut can be sprinkled with resin to stop the blood and disinfect. During the Great Patriotic War, resin saved the lives of many Soviet partisans, who often simply did not have the opportunity to receive qualified medical care.
- Despite its many useful properties, resin can also cause trouble for those who like to walk in the coniferous forest, where it often sticks to clothes. There is a good recipe that will help in this situation: you need to put a paper napkin on the resin and warm it up with an iron. The resin will stick to the napkin and the fabric will be clean. Some craftsmen claim that the foreign drink "Coca-Cola" can also help. You need to soak the damaged area in it and wait a while. After this simple procedure, the resin can be easily wiped off.