Long ago there lived a powerful and respected emperor who loved to throw huge extravagant banquets at the palace.On his 66th birthday, the emperor decided to host the biggest and most elaborate banquet of all to celebrate the special occasion, inviting everybody in the kingdom.
- The emperor’s birthday•
- The emperor’s decree•
- The food•
- The palace•
- The emperor arrives•
- The emperor’s goblet•
- The feast begins•
- The celebration•
It was declared that the royal feast would last for three whole days and consist of over 300 dishes made from exotic ingredients found in the deep forests, high mountains and distant seas.The emperor instructed his most loyal and trusted subjects to travel the country far and wide in search of the most precious and luxurious foods for the banquet.
The palace was decorated with finery ahead of the big feast.Large round tables were draped in brilliant tablecloths, and on them sat the highest quality bronze and porcelain tableware decorated with intricate dragon motifs, the symbol of the emperors, and embellished with precious jade stone, a stone that was prized over gold and silver.
Upon the emperor’s entrance, his faithful subjects fell to their knees to greet him.The head cup-bearer entered to serve tea, and as the emperor drunk, all kowtowed in respect, remaining on their knees until the emperor had finished.
To signal the start of the feast, the draperies in front of the tables were drawn aside to reveal the emperor on his golden carved throne.
The Master of Ceremonies walked towards the emperor bearing in both hands a wine jug, the emperor’s jade goblet, and a cup of gold.The vast jade goblet contained an exotic and heady concoction, and was passed around for guests to drink on their arrival.
The emperor presented his delicacies to his guests, as tray after tray of dishes were brought into the palace.
It was believed that silver would turn black upon contact with poison, so the royalty ate with silver tipped chopsticks.