An Illustrated Modern Reader of 'The Classic of Tea'

An Illustrated Modern Reader of 'The Classic of Tea'


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This commentary on the Chinese masterpiece, The Classic of Tea , offers a fascinating perspective on this ancient pastime and art.

The Classic of Tea , the first known monograph on tea in the world, was written in the 8th century by Lu Yu who devoted his entire life to the study of tea and is respected as the Sage of Tea. Wu Juenong, an agronomist and economist specializing in agriculture, has studied tea all his life. This book is the culmination of lifelong research on Chinese tea culture and history, introducing the readers to modern findings of effects and properties of tea, types of tea preparations, the evolution of tea growing regions and tea drinking customs across China, in addition to extensive annotation. Both scholarly and informative, An Illustrated Modern Reader of 'The Classic of Tea' has been acclaimed as a New Classic of Tea.

An Illustrated Modern Reader of 'The Classic of Tea' also includes vivid illustrations and pictures of tools and utensils for the making and drinking of tea, either hand-drawn or collected by him, which the original The Classic of Tea lacked. Selected Chinese traditional paintings in the book illuminate the elegant art of brewing and drinking tea, the social rituals associated with tea drinking, and the reformative and cultural significance of tea ceremonies.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781602200296
Publisher: Tuttle Publishing
Publication date: 10/10/2017
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 1,017,822
Product dimensions: 7.40(w) x 10.30(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Wu Juenong (1897–1989) was an agricultural scientist and economist. He was also the founding figure in the revival and development of the modern Chinese tea industry. He served as Vice-Minister of Agriculture, honorary president of the China Agricultural Institute and honorary Director General of the China Tea Institute. He established the first specialist higher educational institute for the tea industry as well as a national tea company. He also set up a tea research institute at the foot of the Wuyishan Mountain in Fujian Province and made an outstanding contribution to the development of the Chinese tea industry.

Table of Contents

Foreword 9

Editor's Note 13

Chapter 1 The Origins of Tea 17

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Origins 18

Part 2 Commentary 20

1 The Homeland of Tea 20

2 Characteristics and Morphology of the Tea Tree 25

3 Origins and Transliteration of the Character Cha ($)-Tea 27

4 Ecological Conditions for the Growth of Tea Plants 28

5 Methods for the Cultivation of Tea 30

6 Distinguishing the Quality of Fresh Leaves 30

7 The Efficacy of Tea 31

Chapter 2 Tools Used in the Picking and Manufacturing of Tea 35

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Tools 36

Part 2 Commentary 39

1 Utensils for Picking Tea 39

2 Utensils for Steaming Tea 39

3 Shaping Tools (Including Pounding Tea, Shaping Tea, Laying out Tea) 40

4 Utensils for Drying (Including the Two Steps of Roasting and Stringing Tea) 41

5 Tools for Counting and Scaling 42

6 The Development of Tea Manufacturing Tools and Appliances 43

Chapter 3 The Manufacture of Tea 45

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Manufacture 46

Part 2 Commentary 48

1 Tea Picking 48

2 Method of Manufacturing Brick Tea in the Tang Dynasty 50

3 Assessing the Quality of Tea 51

4 The Development of Tea Manufacture in China 52

5 Modern China's Major Tea Varieties 54

Chapter 4 Vessels for Making and Drinking Tea 59

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Vessels 60

Part 2 Commentary 64

1 Implements for Making a Fire 64

2 Implements for the Boiling of Tea 66

3 Implements for the Roasting, Grinding and Measuring of Tea 66

4 Implements for Holding, Straining and Fetching Water 67

5 Utensils for Drinking Tea 67

6 The Relationship between Vessel and Tea Quality 68

Chapter 5 Roasting Tea and Boiling Tea 71

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Boiling 72

Part 2 Commentary 76

1 Methods of Roasting Tea 76

2 The Choice of Fuel 78

3 Water for Boiling 79

4 Methods of Boiling and Pouring Tea 82

5 Ways of Drinking Tea 83

Chapter 6 Tea Drinking 85

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Drinking 86

Part 2 Commentary 88

1 History of the Expansion of Tea Producing Areas in China 88

2 Spread of the Tea Drinking Custom 89

3 History of the Spread of Tea Abroad 91

4 The Tea Drinking Habit in China 94

5 Tea Drinking Customs of Other Countries and Areas 97

Chapter 7 Historical Material on Tea 101

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Materials 102

1 People 102

2 Historical References 102

Part 2 Commentary 110

1 Medical 110

2 Historical 112

3 Poetic Genres 112

4 The Supernatural 112

5 Notes and Annotations 113

6 Geography 113

7 Other 113

Chapter 8 Tea Producing Areas 115

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Production 116

Part 2 Commentary 120

1 Tang Dynasty Tea Production Areas 120

2 Tea Producing Areas and the Quality of Tea 122

Chapter 9 Omitting Tea Implements and Vessels 131

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Omission 132

Part 2 Commentary 133

Chapter 10 Hanging Scrolls for the Classic of Tea 135

Part 1 The Classic of Tea-Illustration 136

Part 2 Commentary 137

Appendices 138

Bibliography 139

Dates of the Chinese Dynasties 144

Index 145

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