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March 5, 2014

Teapot With A Balaclava


A teapot is a vessel used for steeping tea leaves or a herbal mix in near-boiling water. Tea may be either in a tea bag or loose, in which case a tea strainer will be needed, either to hold the leaves as they steep or to catch the leaves inside the teapot when the tea is poured. Teapots usually have an opening with a lid at their top, where the tea and water are added, a handle for holding by hand and a spout through which the tea is served. Some teapots have a strainer built-in on the inner edge of spout. A small hole in the lid is necessary for air access inside to stop the spout from dripping and splashing when tea is poured. In modern times, a tea cosy may be used to enhance the steeping or to prevent the contents of the teapot from cooling too rapidly.
The teapot probably derived from the ceramic kettles and wine pots which were also made in bronze and other metals and were a feature of Chinese cultural life for thousands of years. The earliest example of a teapot that has survived to this day seems to be the one in the Flagstaff House Museum of Teaware; it has been dated to 1513 and attributed to Gongchun.
Early teapots are small by western standards because they are generally designed for a single drinker and the Chinese historically drank the tea directly from the spout.


Teapot With A Balaclava1
Teapot With A Balaclava2

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