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Empire of Tea: The Asian Leaf that Conquered the World
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Empire of Tea: The Asian Leaf that Conquered the World

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  24 ratings  ·  8 reviews
Although tea had been known and consumed in China and Japan for centuries, it was only in the seventeenth century that Londoners first began drinking it. Over the next two hundred years, its stimulating properties seduced all of British society, as tea found its way into cottages and castles alike. One of the first truly global commodities and now the world’s most popular ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published July 15th 2015 by Reaktion Books (first published June 15th 2015)
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3.54  · 
Rating details
 ·  24 ratings  ·  8 reviews


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Hadrian
Sep 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Although the title implies that this is a history of how tea 'conquered the world', it specifically is a history of tea in Britain, with China and Japan almost thrown in as a foreword.

But in sum, this is a history of tea, or a history of the perceptions of tea. The first chapters focus on tea as a foreign curiosity, and one which is the explicit domain of the aristocracy, and a few natural scientists who attempted to classify and study it. There are also chapters on the elaborate trading network
...more
Sajith Kumar
Jul 04, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: china, trivia
Camellia sinensis is the scientific name of a shrub the modern world is intimately associated with – tea. The ubiquitous drink has permeated polite company so well that modern society, particularly in Britain and its former colonies, can think of no other drink to pour to a friend or guest. Our conversation around the tea table is often so pleasant as to engender a modern maxim that gossip is the best sweetener of tea. The story of tea begins well in the ancient past in China, but it was introdu ...more
Eustacia Tan
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-about-tea
This was a Christmas read that I put off reading for the past three months because… I didn’t want to finish it (and hence couldn’t start it). It’s a silly reason, but I guess I really enjoy the anticipation of having an unread book on a topic I love in the house.

Empire of Tea focuses on the history of tea in the British Empire. The blurb of the book mentions that “it offers a rich cultural history of tea, from its ancient origins in China to its adoption around the world.” However, the history o
...more
Katharine Rudzitis
Apr 26, 2018 rated it it was ok
While a fabulous topic, this was just too dry to be worth the payoff.
Jbondandrews
Oct 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I found this book to be quite fascinating. There was a lot of information and some I didn't know. I enjoyed the cartoon of William Pitt and Charles Fox. I also didn't know about the 'rub down'.
Colin Davey
Sometimes a little repetitive - at times I thought it have been better as a long-read article rather than needing a full book. But on the whole I recommend it to anyone interested, and it is a good topic.
Rose
Feb 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
History of tea in Britain from 17th to 20th centuries. Lots of good illustrations, some in a color section. Discussions of how tea was introduced, the switch from China to India tea, how society changed, etc.
Mills College Library
641.3372 E475 2015
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