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Father of LSD, Albert Hofmann, Dies at 102

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Albert Hofmann, the Swiss chemist who discovered LSD, died at his home near Basel, Switzerland on Tuesday.

Hofmann synthesized lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD-25) in 1938 and five years later became the first person to experience a full-blown acid trip.

On April 16, 1943, Hofmann inadvertently absorbed a little LSD-25 compound in his fingertips at the Sandoz laboratory (now Novartis) where he worked. In a note to the lab director he described what happened next:

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“I was forced to interrupt my work in the laboratory in the middle of the afternoon and proceed home, being affected by a remarkable restlessness, combined with a slight dizziness. At home I lay down and sank into a not unpleasant intoxicated-like condition, characterized by an extremely stimulated imagination. "In a dreamlike state, with eyes closed, I perceived an uninterrupted stream of fantastic pictures, extraordinary shapes with intense, kaleidoscopic play of colours. After some two hours this condition faded away.”

The following Monday -- y'know, to verify the side-effects -- Hofmann ingested 1/4mg of the drug and asked his assistant to ride him home on his bicycle once the effects began to kick in: