A Journey to the Tea Countries of China
- Publication date:April 2012
- 13 b/w illus. 2 colour illus. 1 map
- Dimensions: 216 x 140 mm
- Weight: 0.54kg
'My object is to give a peep into the Celestial Empire, to show its strange hills and romantic valleys, its rivers and canals … and its strange and interesting people.' Robert Fortune (1813–80), the author of several books on China, was a keen botanist. He first went to China for the Royal Horticultural Society, but soon returned on behalf of the East India Company in order to collect tea specimens for the British government's plantations in the Himalayas. In this entertaining account, first published in 1852, Fortune includes stories of how he disguised himself in Chinese clothes to gain access to districts barred to Europeans, of watching farmers sail in what seemed to be wash-tubs, and the bizarre dyeing process that saw large quantities of Prussian Blue and gypsum poured into green tea. Full of panoramic descriptions and engaging anecdotes, this book is ideal for historians and modern-day travellers alike.