CHP-140-The History of Tea Part 1





Link to CCTV Documentary THE STORY OF A LEAF


Sanhuang Wudi 三皇五帝 The Three Sovereigns and Five Emperors

Wang Xufeng  王旭烽  One of China’s great writers and Tea Ambassadors

Mao Dun Prize  茅盾将  China’s answer to the Booker or Pulitzer Prizer

Charen Sanbu Qu  茶人三部曲 Trilogies of the Teamen, written by Wang Xufeng

Wang Laoshi  王老师  Respectful salutation, “Teacher Wang”

Yipian Shuye de Gushi  一片树叶的故事   The Story of a Leaf

Yuantou 源头 fountainhead, source

Li Yuan  李渊 Tang founder Tang Gaozu

Li Shimin  李世民 Son of Li Yuan and co-founder of the dynasty

Emperor Xuan  宣帝 Han Emperor Xuan

Wang Bao   王褒 Western Han individual involved in a contract for a servant

Wuyang  武阳  City on the Jiangxi-Fujian border, home of an ancient tea market

Jiangxi   江西 Province in eastern China

Nanchang  南昌 Capital of Jiangxi Province

Cha  茶  Tea

Jia  槚 a former character for tea

Tu   荼  ancient name for tea

Chuan   荈  a former character for tea

She     a former character for tea                

Ming  茗  a former character for tea

Lu Yu  陆羽  The tea saint, writer of the Cha Jing

Cha Jing  茶经   The Classic of Tea

Cha Sheng  茶圣  The Tea Saint, Lu Yu

Shen Nong  神农  The Divine Farmer, Shennong

Wugu Xiandi  五谷先帝The Emperor of the Five Grains, another nickname of Shen Nong

Shen Nong Bencao Jing  神农本草经  Shen Nong’s Materia Medica or Herbal

Baicha   白茶  White tea or plain boiled water

Cha Lin  茶林  Village in Hunan where Shen Nong died

Zhangjiajie   张家界  Beautiful scenic area in northwest Hunan

Ren   人  person

Liang Shiqiu   梁实秋   One of China’s greatest lexicograpers of the 20th century. His 新實用漢英辭典 was my first and favorite dictionary going back to 1979.

Kucai   苦菜  Bitter vegetable

Shijing   诗经  The Book of Songs

Liji  礼记  The Book of Rites

Fujian  福建  Fujian province

Guangdong    广东  Guangdong province

Guangzhou   广州  Guangzhou, a.k.a Canton

Xiamen  厦门   Xiamen in Fujian

Fuzhou   福州  Fuzhou or Foochow as it was once called

Quanzhou  泉州  Coastal port city in Fujian

Shuowen Jiezi  说文解字  Han Dynasty Dictionary

Cun 村 Village

Chan Buddhism  禪  Zen Buddhism

Zhou Xin 紂辛  Di Xin, 帝辛, Infamous last king of the Shang Dynasty

Jiuchi Roulin   酒池肉林  The Wine Pool and Meat Forest.

Chengdu   成都  Capital of Sichuan

Gan Lu Cha  甘露茶  Sweet Dew Tea, the famous tea of Mengding Shan.

Wu Lizhen  吴里真 Buddhist Monk credited with the cultivation of tea on Mengding Shan.

Mengding Shan  蒙顶山 Mountain in Sichuan where tea cultivation began in China

Xian Cha   仙茶  The Tea of the Immortals, a.k.a. Gan Lu Tea from the seven original trees

Ya’an  雅安  City outside Chengdu famous for tea

Qionglai  邛崃   City outside Chengdu famous for tea

Sanguo Zhi  三国志  Record of the Three Kingdoms

Sun Hao  孙浩  Eastern Wu king known for his drunkeness

Wei Yao   Loyal official to Sun Hao

Sima Yan  司马炎   (also known as 晋武帝) Jin Dynasty founder

Jin  晋朝  The Jin Dynasty

Shang-Zhou-Han   商周汉  The three dynasties of Shang-Zhou Han

Luoyang  洛阳   One of China’s ancient capitals

Chang’an  长安  One of China’s ancient capitals  (present day Xian)

Qin Shihuang  秦始皇  Qin dynasty founder

Er Ya  尔雅  The first dictionary in China

Guangya   广雅  An updated version of the Er Ya

Longjing  龙井  Village outside Hangzhou famous for Longjing, Dragon Well tea

Shu Guo  蜀国  The kingdom of Shu, present day Sichuan

Sanxingdui  三星堆  Neolithic ruins discovered outside Chengdu

Ba Shu   巴蜀  Ancient state from the Shu Kingdom

Zhou King Wu    周武王  Brother of the Duke of Zhou, conquering king.

Haojing   镐京   Western Zhou Capital

Ying Zheng  嬴政  The future Qin Shihuang

Han Wudi  汉武帝  The great martial emperor of the Western Han

Liu Song   刘宋  1st dynasty in the south during the Nanbei Chao, 420-479

Wucheng  婺城 District of Jinhua in Zhejiang, Province.

Nanbei Chao  南北朝  The Northern and Southern Dynasties

Zhuge Liang  诸葛亮  Great strategist and statesman of the 3 Kingdoms period

Yang Jian  杨暕 Second Sui emperor and grandson of founder Wendi

Sui Wendi  隋文帝  Founder of the Sui Dynasty

Taishan   台山  City in southern Guangdong, southwest of Jiangmen




  • Lazlo, fantastic work. can you list the books that you use as source to produce the podcast, I know you mentioned those in the podcast itself, it would be great to have them listed here.

    • Hi Liam: I’m going to list all this on one easy to use file later on…but so as not to make you wait, I used the following:
      The Ultimate Tea Lover’s Treasury by James Norwood Pratt
      Great Teas of China by Roy Fong
      James Norwood Pratt’s Tea Dictionary
      The Tea Enthusiast’s Handbook by Mary Lou & Robert J. Heiss
      The Story of Tea: A Cultural History and Drinking Guide by Mary Lou & Robert J. Heiss
      All About Tea by William H. Ukers
      For All the Tea in China Sarah Rose Amazon ink
      The Classic of Tea: Origina & Rituals Francis Ross Carpenter Amazon link

  • Thank you so much for the entire series. Am hooked and listening to the whole catalogue over this christmas if possible! The podcasts are a wonderful resource for all those who want to learn more about China, her history, people and culture. Well done, a stellar series.

  • You state pretty clearly towards the middle of this podcast that the three “religions” of China all emerged during the Zhou dynasty. This is quite clearly incorrect. I don’t know much regarding the relationship of Daoism to tea, but it’s religious incarnation is generally understood to have begun taking real shape around the 2nd century AD, whilst Buddhism made its first appearance in China around the same time, though slightly lighter, in the 3rd century. This is the very end of the latter Han dynasty and the beginning of the three kingdoms period. Obviously this has implications for their development wih regards to tea. Anyway, I don’t mean to be a pain, I just thought I’d point this out.

  • Doublechecking here, on the ancient tea market– I heard it as Wuyang but thought you might have said Wuyuan, which itself is a major tea producing area in Jiangxi. Could you clarify the location of the market?

  • Excited to listen to all the history of tea eps. Do you know if The Story of a Leaf has been subbed anywhere? Searched Youtube etc but couldn’t find anything. Non-Chinese-reading Chinese person here. If not, any recommendations for other subbed/English videos on the topic that you’ve seen? Many thanks!

    • I spent some time searching but alas, couldn’t find a version of that CCTV documentary with subtitles. I’m going to have to talk to them about that.

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