Today is National Tea Day, a day where we can all come together to celebrate our love of a great cup of tea! With over 100 million cups consumed up and down the country, tea is the Nations’ favourite beverage. But as we revisit the history of the popular hot drink, it’s rather interesting to know that tea didn’t begin in the UK at all.
So sit back, with a cup of tea if you prefer, and take yourself back in time with Coinadrink Limited.
362 years ago, the story actually started in China. According to an ancient legend, the Chinese recognised tea as having lots of health benefits, and they would actually chew on the tea leaves that came from the Camellia Sinensis trees. It was only when the Chinese emperor Shen Nung was sitting beneath this tree that tea, as it is more commonly known today, was founded. The leaves once blew into the mug of boiling water he was holding, so he decided to try it. Now while there isn’t actually any proof in this being the truth, what is known is that the hot beverage was extremely common in the country within the ‘Tang’ dynasty, which was from 618-906 AD. In fact, it was often regarded as the drink of China.
Tea makes its way to Europe…
Such roaring success saw tea eventually reach Europe in the 16th century. The Dutch were the ones responsible for its arrival, when they hijacked import routes from the Middle East used by the Portuguese. They worked quickly to establish the isle of Java as a trading port, and this was where tea would be first shipped to in 1606. It quickly spread to other parts of Europe, though due its high expense not everybody could afford to purchase it. Only the wealthy were able to enjoy it.
Before finally reaching British shores!
Tea reached British shores in 1652, with a small coffee shop in London becoming the first known supplier. This seemed quite late at the time, though Britain had always been quite suspicious of continental trends and refused to get on board until they felt it was safe and beneficial to do so. It also took a while to truly take off, due to people’s curiosity creating a disturbing sense of fear. However, all the talk and concern for tea quickly faded when it was proved to be perfectly safe, and delicious, by a Portuguese princess named Catherine of Braganza, who married British King Charles II. Obviously having more experience of the hot drink than the British, she quickly made a positive case for it. So forth, tea popularity grew, grew and grew some more!
How do you enjoy your cup of tea on National Tea Day?
All of this leads to an incredible journey that is still going on today. There are so many different varieties of tea, including breakfast and herbal, and how we prefer it remains rather unique to the individual. National Tea Day is a time where we can appreciate all that we have, however you enjoy it.
Coinadrink Limited supplies a wide range of hot drinks machines that can deliver the perfect cup of tea, whilst over on our online shop we offer lots of ways to indulge including single-serve tea bags that perfect for the home as well as the workplace. Speciality and herbal teas, also originating from China, are also on our hot drinks menu. Earl Grey, Peppermint, Peach and Lemongrass are just some of our options available over at our Refreshment Shop, so you’re able to delve into wherever the mood takes you.
We’re very proud of the famous hot drink, and on National Tea Day we think you should be too. Why not take time to think about that next time you go to make a cuppa?
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