The Evolution of Coffee Houses

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Nowadays coffee houses or as we know them now as cafes, are a place where we all go to socialise with friends, co-work from and most importantly enjoy a great cup of coffee. 

Throughout history, there’s one common theme: coffee houses have always served as a hub for exchanging ideas and conducting business.

Coffee houses originated in the Middle Eastin the early 1500s or late 1400s in Mecca, they were mainly a place for political gatherings.

It is not exactly known when the first one opened, but they were commonplace enough in the early 1500s that imams banned both coffee houses and coffee from 1512 to 1524. Their concern was mainly that the political sentiments expressed in coffee houses challenged the current rule.

The concept spread from Mecca to Vienna in 1529 (fun fact: This is where sweeteners were first added to coffee. A few years later it reached Damascus in 1534 to Constantinople in 1555.

The first English coffee house opened in 1652, and by 1700 people were counting between 1,000 and 8,000 of them. Coffee houses quickly became popular places to conduct business and formed an integral part of English society.

As they became centers of commerce, some coffee houses became very prominent and specialized. Theologians and scholars would gather at one, stock brokers at another and sea-faring merchants at another. Notably, women weren’t permitted in coffee shops, unless they owned or worked in them

Fast forward to today and the concept of coffee houses or cafes has not drastically changed, now we just have free wifi and anyone is welcome to join!

Do you know any other interesting facts about coffee houses? Let us know in the comments.

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