Tea, which came to us from the East, became beloved by the Russian people. Tea traditions in Russia are radically different from the Japanese or Chinese customs, but they are beautiful in their own way. Few people think that, pouring another cup of tea, we follow the traditions of our ancestors. Many people associate Russian tea drinking with a brilliant samovar, an abundance of sweets and pastries on the table. The hospitality of the Russian people, the breadth of the soul, does not allow serving guests only tea. For dear guests, fragrant buns, jams, and pies are served for tea.
As soon as tea became firmly established in the life of the highest strata of society, the traditions of tea drinking in Russia began to take shape. In merchant families, it was customary to drink tea from saucers, it was believed that as it cools faster. Guests were invited to a cup of tea. Of course, no one got along with a cup. A samovar, polished to a shine, was put on the table, the delicacies were exhibited, and during the emotional conversation the tea-drinking in Russia lasted several hours. At the tea table it was not allowed to smoke, sing, it was not customary to laugh loudly, talk, argue. Heavy topics at the table did not rise. Everything was orderly and calm. You could quietly communicate, read, solve charades.
Tea in the house poured mistress. At the table was the most honorable place — under the images, the hosts sat there or it was given to the most expensive guests. Cups of tea were handed over to the guests with the words “To health”, in response received “Thank you”. The children were full members of the tea ceremony, but they had to follow the rules: not to push, not to chatter, not to interrupt the elders. They had to learn to behave sedately.
It is rumored that the famous writer Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky was a great lover of tea. Morning he began with a cup of fragrant good tea (he did not perceive cheapness), leafing through the morning newspapers. If finances allowed, he went to the best confectionery of St. Petersburg and bought a box of expensive sweets for tea. For the evening tea, which was taken to drink at nine o’clock in the evening, the whole family gathered.