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23Oct2020
Oolong or Wulong... Which is correct?

Oolong or Wulong... Which is correct?

By: Dan & Eileen DurandComments: 0

OOLONG OR WULONG: WHICH IS CORRECT?

Pictured are the Chinese characters for oolong tea, or wulong tea, or wu long tea.  The first character is pronounced "oo" or “u”, depending on where you are from in China. The second character is pronounced "long" and the third character (tea) is pronounced "cha".

So which is correct?
Some people prefer oolong, some Wulong.  It’s basically a different spelling, since Wulong is a Chinese word and Chinese does not have an alphabet.  Wulong is the pinyin romanisation of what the West calls ‘oolong’.  Pinyin romanization allows entering characters on a standard computer keyboard, using the Roman alphabet to write Chinese Mandarin.  It was originally the shape and color of the dry leaves that gave oolong its original Chinese name. The word Wulong literally translates as black dragon.  In the original form of the oolong tea category, oolong was always large leaf, long, twisted and dark. The ball-rolled tea form of oolong, such as that of Tieguanyin and Dong Ding, came about much later in history.  
 
So both terms are correct.

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