Picture: 123RF/wiroklyngz
Picture: 123RF/wiroklyngz

Do not expect to learn any time soon what former president Jacob Zuma and EFF leader Julius Malema discussed at their now infamous tea party.

"The young man wanted to have tea with an elder, and the elder said yes; then they had tea," said Zuma spokesperson Vukile Mathebula about the event.

"That is all."

Or perhaps that isn’t all. When tea spread from China to the West in the 17th century, it was seen as a miracle drink. In 1686 British MP T Povey listed its benefits, as translated from a Chinese source. The spelling is his.

1. It purifyes the Bloud of that which is grosse and Heavy.

2. It Vanquisheth heavy Dreames.

3. It Easeth the brain of heavy Damps.

4. Easeth and cureth giddinesse and Paines in the Heade.

5. Prevents the Dropsie.

6. Drieth Moist humours in the Heade.

7. Consumes Rawnesse.

8. Opens Obstructions.

9. Clears the Sight.

10. Cleanseth and Purifieth adults humours and a hot Liver.

11. Purifieth defects of the Bladder and Kiddneys.

12. Vanquisheth Superflous Sleep.

13. Drives away dissiness, makes one Nimble and Valiant.

14. Encourageth the heart and Drives away feare.

15. Drives away all Paines of the Collick which proceed from Wind.

16. Strengthens the Inward parts and Prevents Consumption.

17. Strengthens the Memory.

18. Sharpens the Will and Quickens the Understanding.

19. Purgeth Safely the Gaul.

20. Strengthens the use of due benevolence.

Truly, tea is a cure for all manner of things, vanquishing, perhaps, any fears of having to appear before deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo or even encouraging the heart to further irritate the country’s president. But I wouldn’t bet a rooibos teabag on it.


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