1.) Originally the name for dried materials of vegetable or animal origin, which are used as such or in the form of excerpts as cures.
2.) The current definition covers in particular all substances which are leading to intoxication conditions or dependence, including synthetically manufactured substances (like designer drugs) and alcohol.
There is to differentiate between legal and illegal drugs:
Legal drugs in the European culture are alcohol, nicotine, coffee, in addition, all medically ordered medicines with dependence potential (e.g. tranquilizer, stimulantia, sleeping drugs or analgetica.
The most important illegal drugs for their part still distinctive into so-called soft or hard drugs:
Soft drugs are Cannabis and LSD, once because of the application form, i.e. they are inhaliert or taken orally and are not injected, on the other hand, because they do not lead to a physical dependence.
Examples for hard drugs are heroin, amphetamine and designer drugs, since they are injected and producing physiological dependence.
An intermediate position takes Cocain, which can produce above all a strong psychological dependence by nasale application, in addition, injected to deaths.