History Of Coffee

Written by Linda Alexander
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The history of coffee is as rich and interesting as the brew itself. The exact origins of coffee are not known, although legend has it that a shepherd in Ethiopia first observed the effect of the beans on his sheep. He saw that the sheep who were eating the berries of the shrubs were more energetic and playful. He tasted the berries himself and experienced the first coffee high.

Throughout the history of coffee, the preparation of the beverage has changed. First, people would eat the coffee cherries to get the caffeine effects. Coffee beans were used as medication and in religious rituals to keep monks awake through prayer. As time went on, some merchants dried the beans and attempted to concentrate the flavor by roasting them.

Eventually, somebody thought to grind the beans and brew them with water. Modern coffee was born! The Ottomans learned about coffee in Yemen in 1536 and brought it back with them, spreading it throughout their empire. Eventually, the Austrians got hold of it and proliferated coffee's popularity through Europe.

Pondering the History of Coffee

Today, coffee is one of the world's most popular non-alcoholic beverages. It is a heavily traded commodity that in some countries is the main export. Most coffee production is still done by hand. The next time you slowly sip a steaming cup of your favorite brew, think about the history of coffee and how it went from a shepherd in Ethiopia to a beverage enjoyed daily around the world.

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