Zuicheng Brought the Tiantaishan Tea Seeds Back to Japan in the 21st Year of the Tianbao reign in the Tang Dynasty
In the 13th year of Tianbao in the Tang Dynasty (754 AD), Monk Jianzhen went to Japan, bringing tea drinking art to Japan, which happened more than 1,260 years ago.
In the 21st year of the Zhenyuan reign in the Tang Dynasty (804 AD), Monk Zuicheng came to China from Japan for Buddha Dharma and brought back tea seeds from Tiantai Mountain of Zhejiang Province in China, as well as the tea drinking art, which was loved by the royal family immediately and then spreader to common people gradually. That happened more than 1,200 years ago.
In the South Song Dynasty, the Japanese Zen Master Rongxi came to China twice, brought back tea seeds and planted them in the temple. He also promoted tea drinking vigorously. He wrote Drinking for Health and presented to the Kamakura Shogunate. Since then, tea drinking became popular in the upper class. Rongxi is honored as the “the Father of Tea " of Japan.
In Volume 10 of Korea’s Three Kingdoms, it reads that on the 12th day of the year of King Xingde (528 AD), Emissary Dalian brought back tea seeds from the Tang Dynasty, which were planted in Dili Mountain (now Mount Jiri). This is the beginning of tea tree planting in Korea, dating back more than 1490 years.
In the Ming Dynasty, tea was introduced to Africa through Zheng He’s voyages to the West.