Thursday, June 9, 2011

Lost At Sea Tea

Isn’t it fascinating that tea has such a rich history and that there has been so much written on the subject.  It seems that there is something new to pique my interest almost every day.  Lately I’ve been learning about the Dutch East India Company cargo ship the Geldermalsen, which was lost at sea in January 1752.

Sadly, this important archaeological find was destroyed in the haste to remove the precious cargo.

IR 4089.0002

The most important cargo on board was, of course, tea.  The chests of tea (close to 700,000 pounds) were packed several meters high.  The cargo also included gold ingots and 203 chests of porcelain like the plate shown above. 

Can you imagine 63,623 tea cups, 578 teapots, 548 milk jugs, 171 dinner services, and much more of this gorgeous blue and white porcelain? 

Geldermalsen treasure 

Christies Auction House advertised their Amsterdam sale of “Nanking Cargo” (book) porcelain and in May 1986 they sold almost 160,000 pieces at a record price of 20 million dollars.  One antique dealer purchased a dinner service for $261,475. 

You can read more about the Geldermalsen here


Angela McRae said...

This is fascinating! I've never even heard of this ship, so thanks for bringing this to our attention!

Marilyn said...

What a fascinating thing to research and I love seeing the teapot and plate.

Cheap London escorts said...

I also had heard about this Ship from my Friends and after that I had searched about that and found many interesting view about this Ship.

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