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Europe was a coffee-drinking continent before itbecame a tea-drinking one. Tea was grown in China,thousands of miles away. The opening of trade routeswith the Far East in the fifteenth and sixteenth cen-05turies gave Europeans their first taste of tea.However, it was an unpromising start for the bev-erage, because shipments arrived stale, and Europeantea drinkers miscalculated the steeping time andmeasurements. This was a far cry from the Chinese10preparation techniques, known as a "tea ceremony,"which had strict steps and called for steeping iniron pots at precise temperatures and pouring intoporcelain bowls.China had a monopoly on the tea trade and kept15their tea cultivation techniques secret. Yet as world-wide demand grew, tea caught on in Europe. Someproprietors touted tea as a cure for maladies. SeveralEuropean tea companies formed, including theEnglish East India Company. In 1669, it imported20143.5 pounds of tea—very little compared to the32 million pounds that were imported by 1834.Europeans looked for ways to circumvent China'smonopoly, but their attempts to grow the tea plant(Latin name Camellia sinensis) failed. Some plants25perished in transit from the East. But most often thegrowing climate wasn't right, not even in the equato-rial colonies that the British, Dutch, and Frenchcontrolled. In 1763, the French Academy of Sciencesgave up, declaring the tea plant unique to China30and unable to be grown anywhere else. Swedish andEnglish botanists grew tea in botanical gardens, butthis was not enough to meet demand.After trial and error with a plant variety dis-covered in the Assam district of India, the British35managed to establish a source to meet the growingdemands of British tea drinkers. In May 1838, thefirst batch of India-grown tea shipped to London.The harvest was a mere 350 pounds and arrived inNovember. It sold for between 16 and 34 shillings40per pound. Perfecting production methods tookmany years, but ultimately, India became the world'slargest tea-producing country. By the early 1900s,annual production of India tea exceeded 350 millionpounds. This voluminous source was a major factor45in tea becoming the staple of European householdsthat it is today.
In Europe, there's a long tradition of takingafternoon tea. Tea time, typically four o'clock, meansnot just enjoying a beverage, but taking time out to50gather and socialize. The occasion is not identicalacross Europe, though; just about every culture hasits own way of doing things.In France, for example, black tea is served withsugar, milk, or lemon and is almost always accom-55panied by a pastry. Rather than sweet pastries, theFrench prefer the savory kind, such as the gougère,or puff pastry, infused with cheese.Germans, by contrast, put a layer of slowly melt-ing candy at the bottom of their teacup and top the60tea with cream. German tea culture is strongest inthe eastern part of the country, and during the weektea is served with cookies, while on the weekend orfor special events, cakes are served. The Germansthink of tea as a good cure for headaches and stress.65Russia also has a unique tea culture, rooted inthe formalism of its aristocratic classes. Loose leafblack tea is served in a glass held by a podstakannik,an ornate holder with a handle typically made fromsilver or chrome—though sometimes it may be gold-70plated. Brewed separately, the tea is then dilutedwith boiled water and served strong. The strength ofthe tea is seen as a measure of the host's hospitality.Traditionally, tea is taken by the entire family andserved after a large meal with jams and pastries.75Great Britain has a rich tradition of its own. Priorto the introduction of tea into Britain, the Englishhad two main meals, breakfast and a second,dinner-like meal called "tea," which was held aroundnoon. However, during the middle of the eighteenth80century, dinner shifted to an evening meal at a latehour; it was then called "high tea." That meant thenecessary introduction of an afternoon snack to tideone over, and "low tea" or "tea time" was introducedby British royalty. In present-day Britain, your85afternoon tea might be served with scones and jam,small sandwiches, and cookies (called "biscuits"),depending on whether you're in Ireland, England, orScotland.Wherever they are and however they take it,90Europeans know the value of savoring an afternooncup of tea.
Data from Euromonitor International and World Bank.
1. It can be reasonably inferred, based on Passage 1, that
2. Which choice provides the best evidence for the answer to the previous question?
3. Based on the information in Passage 1, what would have been the most likely result if the British had not been able to grow tea in India?
4. As used in line 22, "circumvent" most nearly means
5. It can be inferred from Passage 1 and the graphic that
6. It is reasonable to infer, based on Passage 2, that
7. Which choice provides the best evidence for the answer to the previous question?
8. As used in line 66, "aristocratic" most nearly means
9. Compared with France's tradition of tea-drinking, having tea in Germany
10. Which statement is the most effective comparison of the two passages' purposes?
11. Both passages support which generalization about tea?
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