Tea-time! How was tea invented?

February 05, 2019
Our love-affair with tea is no secret. We shamelessly devour the cups of tea, licking the brim and slowly find ourselves on a road trip to Paradise, which smells like tea leaves (that was obvious, wasn't it?). But how about delaying tea-time for a few minutes, and learn where and how it was invented instead?
The evidence of tea was first recorded in China, and that was in 59 BC itself! But researchers are of the opinion that it must have originated much earlier (so much for our desi possessiveness, sigh!). There is also this really interesting theory, or rather a story, where the Chinese Emperor Shennong's (also their folk deity) boiling pot of water had some wild leaves blown into itby the hissing winds, and he was so pleasantly intrigued by the smell, that he decided to drink it. That was tea, and no, we are not supposed to drink whatever we find. That was what Alice did in the famous book, though. Coming to statistics (yes, we need something concrete), there were records of tea being served in the Shijing (oldest surviving book of Chinese poetry), which mentioned it as a "bitter vegetable". Then there were accounts from the Shang dynasty. People in Sichuan were no strangers to tea, as they boiled the tea leaves, and then used the concentrated liquid.There were also evidences of the Ba people of Sichuan serving tea to the Zhou king, and also evidences unearthed from the mausoleum of Emperor Jing (of Han dynasty)in 2016 which clearly shows the Chinese loved their tea!

While you are busy picking tea leaves inside your heads, let me also tell you that tea was originally used as a medicinal drink, and later for recreational purpose! Well, the later part of history saw the Portuguese introducing tea to the picky Britons, who in turn introduced it to Assam, although the Singpho people had been drinking the same for quite some time. Then the Assam tea gained prominence. Yes, tea may have been discovered in China, and now you know it, but I am pretty sure we are tea-holics waiting for rehab in India!

Post Written by - Lopamudra

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.