When writing and/or speaking about tea in Burma, or any other nation for that issue, it is unavoidable to depart on the trip right into the realm of tea in China – in south-west China to be precise – for that is as I will certainly discuss in the adhering to most definitely from where tea is initially originating from.
The discussion on whether the background of Burmese tea and the alcohol consumption of tea in Burma have actually originated in China has possibly extra to do with a minimum of some Bamars’/ Burmans’ hesitation to confess that the beginning of tea is China and that the alcohol consumption of tea was adopted by them later on from the Shan, than with tea, tea alcohol consumption and tea culture itself. The realities are that tea both as plant and drink was found as well as had actually become vital part of Chinese and later Shan society already at once when no Bamar/Burman had ever before established foot right into what is nowadays Burma (because 1989 also called Myanmar).
To put it simply the initial kingdom of the Bamar the ‘kingdom of Pagan’ (that was actually started by the Pyu, as well as while we go to it, Anawrahta, the 42nd king of Pagan that is by the Bamar/Burman took into consideration the creator of the 1st Burman kingdom was a Pyu, not a Bamar/Burman) did at that time not exist what is already the guaranteed answer to the inquiry of the beginning of tea, tea alcohol consumption as well as tea society in Burma; Burma or any kind of predecessor of it just really did not exist in or during the era concerned, duration. But why are there still people (not so many of them, though) that when faced with all realities and logic claim that Burmese tea, tea alcohol consumption and also tea culture are not originated in China? Short answer: Because the location that remained in pre-Bamar time populated by the Shan is currently laying partly within the far north east of Burma. Nonetheless, that these locations are nowadays located within Burma’s limits does not always mean that the exact area in which Camellia sinensis was originally found and also where it after that spread to India, through all of south-east Asia and, lastly, throughout the world exists within north-east Burma. It is possible but it is additionally feasible that Camellia sinensis – translated from feshop Latin into English the name implies ‘Tea blossom’ (camellia) ‘from China’ (sinensis) – contends a later point expanded right into the location currently covered by the north-eastern part of Burma.
The book of tea is a publication with lots of pages and also phases starting shrouded in the haze of myth as well as legend some time back in 3000 BC. There is even the concrete date 2725 BC stated what is connecting the (unintentional) exploration as well as the later alcohol consumption of tea to the Chinese emperor Shen Nung about who I will inform you a lot more a little bit later. No one truly knows when it was that the alcohol consumption of tea (what back then was constantly eco-friendly tea due to the fact that it was unfermented likewise called unoxidised) began to become part of Chinese culture. That is why it can not be within the range of this short article to (as intriguing as this may be) deal with associated myths, legends as well as mythology in order to expose tea background’s secret of when and also where this was and also how it occurred. The solution to this question will certainly never ever be located anyway what implies that it will certainly for always remain hidden behind the curtain of legend. As a result we have to locate truths in the form of composed documents and archaeological finds that will provide us tea related info we are searching for. And also as far as that is worried we do not need to search for long.
We are given the initial reliable information in a Chinese encyclopaedia that was begun to be put together and also written throughout the Han Dynasty at some time around 325 BC and more increased from then on: its name is Erya likewise led to Erh-ya. The author of the Erya is unknown yet it is among scholars accepted that this have actually been adherents of Confucius. Right here we locate records letting us recognize that tea was already known and also drunken at the very least at the beginning of the Zhou Empire in 1046 BC, most likely previously. Nevertheless, it is not specified whether it was tea made from camellia sinensis leaves and drunken for satisfaction or some organic probably not extremely scrumptious tea inebriated for clinical functions just.
From later documents we know that developing and alcohol consumption tea was already part of the Chinese individuals’s daily life at the start of the Han Empire in 206 B.C. or even earlier. That the drinking of tea has so fairly quick permeated the Chinese culture would certainly not have been possible without Buddhist monks. It was the Buddhist monk orders that have not only spread the alcohol consumption of tea among the populace however that had actually also taken control of the planting and also handling of tea. Soon after tea as beverage had actually been presented throughout the Han Empire, Buddhism was related to tea. The Buddhist monks have actually really early recognised that tea was an inexpensive and revitalizing beverage with good taste and also scent that kept them awake.
From the by Lu Yu throughout the Flavor Dynasty written and at regarding 760 advertisement published publication ‘The Classic of Tea’ (Cha Jing in Chinese) we can take that green tea was recognized and drunken throughout every one of China for satisfaction from 618 ADVERTISEMENT, or earlier on. For Lu Yu tea was the symbol of consistency and also mystical unity of the Universe from which we can see how highly he considered tea.
A mind-blowing discovery would (at the time of this writing in 2016) 1255 years later prove Lu Yun incorrect in until now as green tea was already a preferred drink in south and west China earlier than 141 BC. The a.m. spectacular exploration was that it was confirmed that leaves located in the tomb of the 6th Emperor of the western Han Dynasty, Emperor Jin of Han (Liu Qi), where real (Camellia sinensis) tea leaves that were provided him along with countless clay soldiers as well as many other points as serious helpful for the journey right into his afterlife. To stay clear of confusion, the emperor’s tomb was currently discovered in the 1990s during roadway building work, which by itself (not the roadway building yet the exploration of the Emperor’s tomb) was a world experience. Nonetheless, with respect to the contents of this article the finding of the tea leaves was even more mind-blowing due to the fact that these tea leaves are one of the most old as well as finest tea leaves ever before found what has earned them an access in the Guinness Book of Globe Records as ‘The world’s oldest tea leaves’.
Just like many other things the beginning of alcohol consumption tea is steeped in legend. There are different tales about just how the first phase of guide of tea begins as well as having reviewed them I have come to the verdict that 99.99 percent of them belong into the realm of legends. One of the most prominent Chinese tales is the with terrific satisfaction over and over told tale concerning an emperor’s pot of hot water that happened to be put precisely under a tea tree where tea leaves were sure to drop right into the pot. Naturally, oh marvel (exactly how might it be any different) tea leaves fell into the pot with boiling water whereupon the emperor got of interest a sip of the previously unidentified currently somewhat yellowish-brown coloured water. He was, as the legend goes, so fired up concerning the scent and also preference that after that he made tea his much-loved beverage and also the drinking of tea became part of Chinese culture. The emperor in this tale is the mythological emperor Shen Nung also meant Shannong, Shen Nong that is by the Chinese venerated as the ‘Divine Farmer’ and the ‘Dad of Chinese Herbal Medicine’. He was what is nowadays called ‘pharmacologist’, as well as it is believed that he has ‘lived’ 140 years, from 2838 BC to 2698 BC. This is no question all pure legend however its beginning might be seen versus the background of the fact that Shen Nung was herbalist and that tea went to the beginning made use of as organic medicine in both strong (as vegetable or salad) and/or fluid kind (as tea).
What is tea and where is it stemmed? Quickly placed, tea is a beverage generally including water and also natural (uncured) and also healed tea fallen leaves of the species camellia sinensis. This is, as previously stated, an evergreen shrub belonging to Asia that can when it continues to be unblemished grow in the wild right into a tree with an elevation of some 55 ft/ 17 m. By the way, why do we call tea, tea? Let me quickly explain where the name ‘tea’ originated and where it spread around the globe. The name ‘tea’ has its origin in China where 2 names are used for the exact same drink. It is called ‘Cha’ in Chinese language as well as ‘Tay’ in Xiamenese language. In 1644 the British established a trading post in Xiamen and anglicised the Xiamenese ‘tay’ what, consequently, came to be ‘tea’ a name that in the list below time promptly spread through and was accepted by the English speaking globe.
Where specifically is Camellia sinensis stemmed? As unbelievable as it appears as well as whatever we might think about it, considerable and in-depth research study has resulted in the outcome that this tea plant – the Camellia sinensis – was not a plant that had or can have developed as well as grown separately in several parts of the world but astonishingly sufficient just within a relatively little area situated in and also constrained to a region that does include parts of what is nowadays the Shan state (as north and north-eastern part of the back then not existing Burma) and also the Chinese districts Yunnan and Sichuan.
Yet whether ‘Burmese’ tea has its origin in China (what it has) or otherwise, or whether the drinking of tea became part of the Burman’s culture only after it was introduced to them by the Shan (what it was) or whether or not the famous ‘Burmese milk tea is really Indian tea presented by the Indian – and also NOT British – individuals throughout British early american times (what it was and is) does truly not matter much – if anything at all – since the truth stays that ‘tea’ has more than time (trough all the Bamar/Burman kingdoms, the British colonial times as well as the past-independence time) became an indispensable part of the supposed ‘Burmese beverage and food culture’ what it continues to be to be to today as well as will certainly constantly be wherewith I have actually now ‘beamed’ us from the ancient past into the present.
Before our arrival at one of the many Burmese tea shops in Yangon – serious, they are literally at every edge, what holds true for every location with more than two houses in all of Burma – to delight in a cup or two of the popular ‘Burmese Milk Tea’ as well as one of the delicious Burmese tea leave salads called ‘Lahpet Thoke’ at the end of this article allow us begin at the start, by briefly responding to inquiries such as, where tea is growing within the boundaries of contemporary Burma, what type of tea it is, just how it is processed after being plugged, of what high quality Burmese tea is contrasted to the qualities of e.g. China, India and also various other Eastern nations, and so on.