George Orwell’s Rules for Making the Perfect Cup of Tea: A Short Animation

Sev­er­al years back, Col­in Mar­shall high­light­ed George Orwell’s essay, “A Nice Cup of Tea,” which first ran in the Evening Stan­dard on Jan­u­ary 12, 1946. In that arti­cle, Orwell weighed in on a sub­ject the Eng­lish take seriously–how to make the per­fect cup of tea. And he pro­ceed­ed to offer 11 rules for achiev­ing that result. Above, Luís Sá con­dens­es Orwell’s sug­ges­tions into a short ani­ma­tion, made with kinet­ic typog­ra­phy. Below, you can read the first three of Orwell’s 11 rules, and find the remain­ing eight here.

  • First of all, one should use Indi­an or Cey­lonese tea. Chi­na tea has virtues which are not to be despised nowa­days — it is eco­nom­i­cal, and one can drink it with­out milk — but there is not much stim­u­la­tion in it.…
  • Sec­ond­ly, tea should be made in small quan­ti­ties — that is, in a teapot.… The teapot should be made of chi­na or earth­en­ware. Sil­ver or Bri­tan­ni­aware teapots pro­duce infe­ri­or tea and enam­el pots are worse.…
  • Third­ly, the pot should be warmed before­hand. This is bet­ter done by plac­ing it on the hob than by the usu­al method of swill­ing it out with hot water.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

George Orwell and Christo­pher Hitchens’ Iron­clad Rules for Mak­ing a Good Cup of Tea

An Ani­mat­ed His­to­ry of Tea

10 Gold­en Rules for Mak­ing the Per­fect Cup of Tea (1941)

“The Virtues of Cof­fee” Explained in 1690 Ad: The Cure for Lethar­gy, Scurvy, Drop­sy, Gout & More

The Art of the Japan­ese Teapot: Watch a Mas­ter Crafts­man at Work, from the Begin­ning Until the Star­tling End

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