Coffee House Culture

(2161 words)
  • Markman Ellis (Queen Mary, University of London)

Literary/ Cultural Context Essay

Coffee was one of a series of exciting new stimulants discovered by Europe in the early seventeenth century, along with tea, chocolate, tobacco and opium. Coffee-drinking was first observed by travellers and merchants among the Turks in the late sixteenth century. Reports from Ottoman authorities show that the drink had spread from Yemen in the first decades of the sixteenth century along the routes of trade and pilgrimage. The first coffee-house was opened in London in 1652, by a Greek, Pasqua Rosee, who had learned to prepare the beverage as a clerk in the Turkish trading port of Smyrna (Izmir), while in the employ of an English merchant, Daniel Edwards. Rosee’s coffee-house, in St Michael’s Alley, Cornhill, was located in the …

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Ellis, Markman. "Coffee House Culture". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 26 May 2008
[, accessed 27 September 2016.]