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The Origins of the Tea Brick

Posted by Darren Hartford on


Black Tea Brick, China. Photography by Kyle Brown. All Rights Reserved.  Estimated to be formed around 350 A.D., tea bricks have become a part of Chinese and European culture throughout the ages. Before tea bricks where introduced to Europe, tea bricks were used in China as a form of currency, food, and medicine. From the 9th century on through the 20th century, tea bricks were classified into five different quality categories of value. All the bricks, even to this day, are scored on the back with indentions to allow for easy breakage off the larger block.  When the bricks were assessed for quality, the highest quality bricks were given to the Emperor. There are multiple steps in the process of...

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