Thursday, October 22, 2009

All the Tea in China

"History of Tea"
United Kingdom Tea Council

"Tea is so much a part of everyday life in Britain that we might never stop to think about how a unique plant from faraway China became the nation´s favourite drink. But the history of tea is fascinating, and in this section we can follow its story from the earliest times in Imperial China right up to its present place at the heart of British life.

"Read about the exotic beginnings of tea.

"Discover how tea was brought to England by a seventeenth century queen, and how important the tea trade was to the British East India Company, one of the most powerful commercial organisations the world has ever seen.

"Learn how the phenomenal popularity of tea in the eighteenth century led to widespread smuggling and adulteration, and about the murderous lengths smugglers went to to protect their illegal trade...."

Smuggling? Murder? The British certainly have been serious about their tea!

There's a 'brief history of tea' - and a look at the Boston Tea Party - from a non-colonial point of view.

The United Kingdom Tea Council has a fine website - with a great deal more than cursory background on tea. However, they've changed the website's structure at least once since one of my sources posted links, so if this post's links lead you nowhere, and you still want your spot of tea - so to speak - here's where you (should) find their home page:

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