On The Square

China With a Tea

By Bidsquare

Dec 23,2015 | 09:00 EST

When you think about the country most synonymous with drinking tea you invariably think of the British. Not surprising really – for Brits, from eight-year-olds though eighty, down copious amounts of the stuff. It is their chief elixir against illness, their number one crisis management tool, and their favorite way to unwind. Great Britain without tea is like the Middle East without oil.

Yet it is the Chinese who have a far deeper tradition with the prized leaf. In fact, tea originated in the southwest of China, beginning its life as a medicinal drink. It became a popular throughout China during the Tang Dynasty (618-907), before spreading eventually to other East Asian countries and beyond.

On Wednesday, December 30, bidders can explore China’s age-old relationship with tea when Converse Fine Arts & Antiques Auctions hold their New Years Asian Online sale. On offer are a number of lots related to the ritual of drinking tea, a custom that has won favor the world over.

Lot 154 is a real eye catcher – an exotic Yixing teapot modeled on an unopened flower. Dating back to the 15th Century, these traditional style pots are made from clay produced near Yixing in eastern China.

Lot 15 - a pair of fine 19th Century tea cups sold in their original box.

Lot 82G - a pair of Song style Jianzhan tea bowls.

Lot 56 - a small amber chinese tea pot.