History of the Coffee Mug

It's said that Waechtersbach is the inventor of the can-shaped mug - the traditional coffee mug with a cylindrical body and curved handle. During World War II, Waechtersbach designed and manufactured this style of ceramic drinking vessel for soldiers stationed in Germany.

However, archaeologists have discovered mugs dating back as far as 10,000 BCE! These mugs, hand-carved from bone, were made by people of the Neolithic Stone Age in China and Japan. They were extremely durable but lacked handles.

Stone mugs gave way to decorated clay mugs (this time with handles!), like those found in Greece from 4,000 BCE. The clay mugs had extremely thick walls and were clunky and difficult to drink from.

By 2,000 BCE, artisans were experimenting with mugs made of bronze, silver, and gold. The problem with these mugs was that they were extremely hot to touch and painful to hold.

In 600 CE, the Chinese invented porcelain, which brought a new era of mugs, the kind of which we still enjoy today. Porcelain mugs are well suited to both hot and cold drinks.

These mugs were created long before the arrival of coffee, which originated in Africa in the 13th century. The first coffee shop opened in Constantinople in 1475, featured wooden mugs.

Something to ponder next time you're drinking a mug of tea, coffee, or hot chocolate!