Tea Bowl

Drinking tea from a bowl is an interesting concept. Tea bowl use in China dates from the Jin dynasty, or perhaps even earlier. Way back in Chinese history, a bowl served multiple purposes - for eating food, for drinking, etc. It wasn't until the Jin Dynasty that we see specific-use bowls dedicated to tea. But tea bowls were further developed in the Tang Dynasty, and even better developed in the Song Dynasty. Today, in some parts of China, people still drink tea from bowls.

Tea bowls have many shapes and styles, in addition to the place of manufacture, and the type of glaze, or the type of ceramic. So there is plenty to learn about tea bowls.

Tea bowls are used not only in China, along with tea drinking customs that spread to Korea and Japan, so too did the use of tea bowls.

Tea bowls are called "chawan" in Mandarin, or putonghua, which is the spoken language of most Chinese. Tea bowl is called "chawoon" in Cantonese, the language of Chinese living in Guangdong, Guangxi, and Hong Kong. The Chinese characters for tea bowl are 茶碗. Interestingly, the same characters are used to write tea bowl in both Korean and Japanese. Although, in Korean, they pronounce tea bowl "dawan", and in Japanese, it's "chawan".

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