Saturday, 16 May 2015

Earl Grey Tea - Exploring Tea - Part 6


Who was Earl Grey
Everyone is familiar with Earl Grey tea, but not everyone will realise it is named after a former British Prime Minister.
Born in March 1764, Charles Grey – who became the 2nd Earl Grey in 1807 – was the Whig Prime Minister of the UK from Nov 1830 to Jul 1834. Among the notable achievements of his government was the abolition of slavery in the British Empire. Grey was also an architect of parliamentary reform, and the 1832 Reform Act saw major changes to electoral boundaries and the representation of major cities.
- Grey was educated at Richmond College, Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge
- A descendant of a Northumbrian family with its seat at Howick Hall, Earl Grey is commemorated by a statue on Grey’s Monument in Newcastle-upon-Tyne
- Grey spent his retirement at Howick, died in 1845, and is buried at a nearby church
Grey married Mary Ponsonby in 1794 and, between 1796 and 1819, the couple had 10 sons and 6 daughters. Prior to the marriage, he was already having an affair with Georgiana, the Duchess of Devonshire (as played by Keira Knightley in the film ‘The Duchess’), who fell pregnant with a daughter, Eliza Courtney. Born in Aix-en-Provence, France in 1792, she only learned of her true father following her mother’s death 14 years later.
Dominic Cooper (Charles Grey), Keira Knightley (Georgiana)
Dominic Cooper (Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey) and

Keira Knightly (Georgina)

According to the Grey family, the tea which bears his name was blended specially for the Earl, using Bergamot to offset the excessive lime in the water at Howick, but many stories exist as to how he became to be introduced to the alluring blend. There is no doubt, however, that he led an eventful life, both politically and personally, and his name lives on in the form of one of the world's most flavoured teas.

Using only natural bergamot oil, Newby presents its own Earl Grey in loose-leaf form, as well as tea bags and extra-special Silken Pyramids, at the Newby e-boutique.
- See more at:

Crafted from silver at the height of the Regency 

period, this Paul Storr teaset from the Chitra

collection dates from 1810.

His work was found in the homes of the Prince 

Regent and noted aristocrats of the year. 


Terri said...

Interesting, the story behind the tea. So much history. Thanks for sharing the story.

Rasma Raisters said...

Interesting to read about Earl Grey. I love the tea but knew nothing about him. Thank you for sharing.

Come Away With Me said...

A very interesting history. Earl Grey tea is my current favorite with a little milk and sugar (decaf, of course). It's the bergamot that I love. That is a lovely silver tea set.

Anonymous said...

Your entire webiste is amazing. It always brings me close to a friend in Kendal. I love your exhuberance for life and your deep love of family. I also love your diversity of posts bringing us so much learning and vision of England in its glory. I love Earl Gray tea will now be savored with great appreciation too. Blessings and gratitude to you for your picutres and love...Merri

ChrisJ said...

Not too fond of Earl Grey's tea. I like just plain black English Breakfast.

La Petite Gallery said...

Well, this was very interesting. He was some busy fellow. The Tea set is gorgeous. I painted all winter and now its gardening, hope to get this place in shape this week. Much to do, then the Art shows and company. Have a great Sunday. Yvonne

Adrienne said...

Thank you for sharing the story behind my favorite tea. I've wondered about Earl Grey but I've never stopped to research who he was. Interesting life he had, but I'm very glad for the mix of flavors in his tea!

Bernideen said...

Great information and research! Lovely posting!

Vee said...

Earl Grey sounds like quite an interesting personality. The ending of slavery must surely rank highest on that list. That is a beautiful tea set. I'll never have another cup of Earl Grey without thinking of thos post.

CelestinaMarie@SouthernDayDreams said...

Hi Barbara, so nice to meet you. Loved this post and interesting story. I drink earl grey tea so reading this info was a highlight. Earl Grey was fascinating.
So enjoyed my visit here and now a new follower.
Have a great week.
Celestina Marie

Deanna said...

Hello Barbara.

It's me, Deanna, from across the Pond. Spring blessings to you!

Very nice post and learned a great deal about Earl Grey.

Do you like the silk bags of tea?
I will have to give this a try.

The silver teaset is so gorgeous. Absolutely well done and beautiful.


Cheri said...

Very intersting post!

Anonymous said...

A very interesting post on Earl Grey.
I remember the first time that I had Earl Grey Tea at around 9 years old, so it has been on my shopping list for many years.
I love Earl Grey Tea, but have found that each brand is slightly different.
A wonderful tea.
Thank you for sharing this information. . .another lesson from Barbara.