[Sca-cooks] tisane

emilio szabo emilio_szabo at yahoo.it
Mon Nov 5 16:15:51 PST 2007

> Yeah, but they didn't call an herbal infusion "tea" either

But if I am not mistaken, _I_ may call an herbal infusion "tea" in 
order to talk about herbal infusions and their use in the Middle Ages.
That's all I did and I hope that was in spirit with 21st century
language use.

> since both tea (Camellia sinensis) and the name for it 
> didn't enter into Europe with any commonness until the 
> mid-17th C. (...)

That's what I said something like 10 days ago.

> While i was looking for pre-17th C. recipes for herbal 
> infusions - what the French and some English speakers 
> now call "tisane" - 

and what I have called "tea" (in case the word "tea" is not
used to refer to herbal infusions today, please let me know).

> i found  that some of the recipes called the infusions 
> "juice of nnn", where "nnn" is the main herbal ingredient. 
> They were not called "tea", 

But nobody ever said that they were called "tea" in 
the Middle Ages...

Again: The original question in the questionaire was, if there
was tea in the Middle Ages. The answer was something like:

in a sense no: there was no Chinese-like tea (17th century), 

but on the other hand, in a sense yes, there were forms of 
herbal infusions (what we today also call "tea").

My concern was the statement, that the herbal infusions/"teas"
of the Middle Ages were called "tisane" in their time, a claim
that I find unsupported up to now.

> If Europeans were drinking hot herb infusions as general 
> beverages prior to 1601, i can't find many mentions. From 
> what i can tell, the majority of tisanes/ptisans and herbal 
> beverages prior to 1601 were medicinal, and i haven't found 
> a single consistent name for these herbal infusions - except, 
> perhaps, "infusion".

So, no medieval five o'clock herb infusion ...


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