Jon (j_b) wrote,


  • 1657: Public sale of tea begins at London as the East India Company undercuts Dutch prices and advertises tea as a panacea for apoplexy, catarrh, colic, consumption, drowsiness, epilepsy, gallstones, lethargy, migraine, paralysis, and vertigo.
  • 1657: Tea is offered to Londoners at Thomas Garraway's coffee house in Exchange Alley between Cornhill and Lombard streets.
  • 1658: The London periodical Mercurious Politicus carries an advertisement: "That excellent and by all Physitians approved China Drink called by the Chineans Tcha, by other nations Tay, alias Tea, is sold at the Sultaness Head, a cophee-house in Sweeti Rents."
  • 1780: English sugar consumption reaches 12 pounds per year per capita, up from 4 in 1700, as Britons increase coffee and tea consumption.
  • 1797: English tea consumption reaches an annual rate of 2 pounds per capita, a figure that will increase fivefold in the next century.
  • 1833: The East India Company loses its prized monopoly in the China trade (most of it in tea) by an act of the British prime minister Charles Grey, 69, second Earl Grey.
  • 1840: Afternoon tea is introduced by Anna, the duchess of Bedford. The tea interval will become a lasting British tradition, but the English still drink more coffee than tea.
  • 1849: Harrods has its beginnings in a London grocery shop at 8 Brompton Road that has been run by Philip Henry Burden. Tea wholesaler Henry Charles Harrod, 49, of Eastcheap takes over the shop that will grow to become one of the world's largest department stores.

(inspired by Douglas Adams' instructions for a proper cup of tea) -- Perhaps Harrods Blend #42 (Earl Gray) inspired a certain author...?
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