You probably know it as a spice. But it is also a cheap hallucinogenic drug. Ingested in large quantities (more than 1 whole nut or 1 tablespoon of powder), it causes a toxic syndrome that occurs 3 to 6 hours after ingestion. It is similar to the anticholinergic one, but with small pupils and hypertension. In very high doses it can cause coma.
In medieval Europe it was used as an antiemetic, abortifacient and even as prophylaxis against the plague.