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Fine & Specialty Chinese Teas & Accessories

Chinese Tea History At A Glance


2,000 BCE People eating raw Camellia sinensis leaves in Yunnan
1,000 BCE People boiling raw Camellia sinensis leaves in water
25 CE
276 CE Chinese scholar mentions in book “… barbaric people in the east boil tea leaves with vegetables like a soup”.
600 CE
641 CE Yunnan compressed green tea cake introduced to Tibet
700 CE
815 CE Tea introduced to Japan
862 CE
1100 CE
  First tea houses appear in China
1107 CE
1271 CE Yuan government forms Royal Tea Baking Department
1368 CE
1391 CE First Emperor of Ming Dynasty abolishes production of all compressed tea (moon-shape tea) as people are spending too much time in its manufacture. Only loose leaf tea permitted.
1500's -  
1600's CE
1725 CE
1769 CE Silver Needle Pekoe White Tea developed
1776 CE British prefer to trade opium grown in India for black tea while other countries continue to pay in silver. Leads to numerous conflicts between the two countries. British look for lower cost alternatives
1796 CE
1848 CE Scottish botanist Robert Fortune smuggles Camellia sinensis plants from China to grow in India. British growers in India import Chinese experts and develop mechanized processing  for “Broken Black Tea” using native Camellia assamica plant
1857 CE
1885 CE
1922 CE
1968 CE
1973 CE

Visit the tea pages in this section of the website for more detailed information on the history of each tea.

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