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Portugal played a leading role in the history of tea, and not only for being the first European country to establish trade routes with China and commercialize the plant, at the dawn of the sixteenth century.

 

Actually, it was a Portuguese princess that popularized the famous "five o'clock tea" in England. Catherine of Braganza, daughter of D. John IV and D. Luisa de Gusmao, married Charles II of England in 1661 and came to London a year later, provided with a generous dowry consisting of 500 thousand pounds of gold, the right of England to exercise free trade with any Portuguese colony, the offering of the city of Bombay.

 

Educated and pious,  princess Catherine became respected in the London court where she would impose  - and become the most British of all the habits of the country - the ritual of drinking tea. Charmed, the upper classes followed the fashion (due to its high fees, tea was a luxury that was not within the reach of everyone) and, today, the famous 5 o'clock tea is alongside the figures of the monarchy or Big Ben, a brand image of UK, synonymous of refinement, sophistication, understated elegance.

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