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The Eleventh Finger Given by God — The Cigar

Winter comes, and then snow falls. Snow seems to be born to give any place fairytale vibes. It is a fortunate coincidence that Tsemou Hsu, born in Hangzhou, lived in such a place in the north of China, a place that led him to coin the name Xue Jia.

The Name of the Cigar

In 1924, Tsemou Hsu returned from Berlin to Shanghai during the autumn. Once back, he met a kind scholar, Tagore, who was a recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature. One day, Tagore was describing his ideas and viewpoints with a cigar in his mouth when suddenly Tagore posed a curious question to Tsemou Hsu, “Do you have a name for cigar in Chinese?” Tsemou smiled and answered, “The ash of cigar is white as snow, and its tobacco is curly as nightshade. How about we call it Xue Jia!” From then on, the cigar went by this romantic name.

If there was no Tsemou Hsu, the cigar might have another name in Chinese. Thanks to Tsemou Hsu’s talent and his romantic creativity that vividly transformed the cigar’s soul into the Chinese name Xue Jie, he gave meaning and mysterious strength to the culture of tobacco. That’s why many people regard the cigar as the eleventh finger given by God, showing their craze for cigars.

The History of the Cigar

Tracing back to 1492 when Columbus brought cigars back from the newly found continent, cigar smoking spread like a virus among Westerners. Many writers, politicians, businessmen, and common people fell deeply in love with the tobacco product. “If I cannot smoke cigars in heaven, I shall not go!” said Mark Twain. Mark Twain had tried to quit smoking several times, but it caused him to lose inspiration. Therefore, some historians note that Mark Twain’s inspirations came not only from his talent, experiences, and anger but also from tobacco.