Famous Cigar Smokers, Part I

From world leaders to comedians and actors, there are numerous well known cigar smokers. Here are the most famous of the bunch.

Fidel Castro: Probably the most recognized cigar smoker. The cigar has always been a constant part of his persona and look. Up until 1985, when he decided to stop smoking, you could never find him without his favorite Cohiba Corona Especial. In his early years, when he was busy overthrowing Batista and cigars were rather rare, was the only time he was without them and he made sure to save his remaining cigars, smoking them only at special occasions and triumphs.

Che Guevara: Along with Castro, Che Guevara was also well known for smoking Cuban cigars wherever he went. He used to pass out cigars to his men, saying “A smoke in times of rest is a great companion to the solitary soldier”.

John F. Kennedy: Castro’s contemporary and the President responsible for the 1962 ban of Cuban cigars (and all other Cuban goods) in the United States, Kennedy made sure to stack up on his favorite Cuban cigars (1,200 Petit Upmanns, to be exact) before he signed the ban, which made Cuban cigars a big no-no for Americans to this day.

Winston Churchill: The legendary British Prime Minister had a great affection for cigars and was hardly ever ever seen without his beloved Romeo y Julieta cigars. In fact, the Churchill cigar size is named after him. Legend has it that Churchill wanted a special oxygen mask for high-altitude flights that would also allow him to smoke.

Sigmund Freud: “Sometimes, a cigar is just a cigar” and “Smoking is one of the greatest pleasures in life” are some of Freud’s well known sayings. The famous psychoanalyst was an enthusiastic cigar smoker and was rarely seen without one. His favorite cigars were Don Pedros, Reina Cubanas and Dutch Liliputanos.

Groucho Marx: The most recognized member of the Marx brothers owes at least some of his recognition to his cigar, always hanging from his mouth. The way he held the cigar in his hand had a comedic effect and is instantly linked with him even these days. During a show in which one of the guests was a person with 17 children, Marx said “I smoke a cigar, but I take it out of my mouth occasionally”.

End of part I. To be continued in part II…

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