Tea with the Emperor, Back in the Day



Written records in China are not available for earlier periods, they have either been lost or they were written on materials that disintegrated over time.

The Emperor Shennong (a.k.a. Shen Nong) is credited with discovering tea in 2737 B.C., although archeological evidence suggests that drinking tea began much earlier. He was very interested in plants, herbs, and health and concluded that boiling water before drinking prevented disease. When he was boiling water outdoors under a camellia bush, some of the leaves blew into his pot of boiling water. He liked the taste and then promoted tea for its medicinal value in combatting sleepiness and cheering the heart while satisfying thirst.


The lack of written records makes it difficult to verify the dynasties and particular emperors from this ancient time but the legend of tea and the Emperor Shennong lives on.




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