Why the world is (almost) only two words for tea knows


tea is a good example of how globalization works, before you knew the word for it. Worldwide, there are only a few exceptions (for example, Lithuanian arbata), which is the word used for tea. In fact, only two exist. And although the English term “tea”, for example, it is said in Spain té and in Afrikaans tea. And variations of “cha”, such as, for example, chay in Turkish.

Both words come from China and have spread over the whole world. But in different Ways. Words that sound like “cha”, have spread over the land. Especially on the silk road, the main route for traders between East Asia and the Mediterranean. The name “tea” came over the water in circulation. Dutch traders brought the new leaves to Europe, including the word “tea”.

tea over the country, cha across the sea

Recent research showed that tea has already been traded for over 2000 years ago. The word “cha” has works from China to Central Asia advanced. In Persia it was “chay”. The Form was maintained in Urdu (chay), in the Arab region (shay) and even in Russian (chay). The word has even made it into the African Sahara. In Swahili we say chai.

This is true but not for the word “tea”. The Form of “te” was used mainly on the coasts of China. From there, it is in the 17. Century, Europe penetrated. The main ports of the Dutch in Asia were Fujian and Taiwan, in both Parts, you used the word “te” that the French thé, the English tea, and finally, to our German tea was.

Some languages have their own term to designate tea. These are mainly the countries where tea grows. In Myanmar, it is said to tea leaves, for example, lakphak.

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Steve King
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