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1598, from It. caffe, from Turk. kahveh, from Ar. qahwah "coffee," said originally to have meant "wine," but perhaps rather from Kaffa region of Ethiopia, a home of the plant (Coffee in Kaffa is called buno). Much initial diversity of spelling, including chaoua. Yemen was the first great coffee exporter and to protect its trade decreed that no living plant could leave the country. In 16c., a Muslim pilgrim brought some coffee beans from Yemen and raised them in India. Appeared in Europe (from Arabia) c.1515-1519. Introduced to England by 1650; by 1675 England had more than 3,000 coffee houses. Coffee plantations established in Brazil 1727. Meaning "a light meal at which coffee is served" is from 1774.
Alteration (influenced by Italian caffè, from Turkish), of Ottoman Turkish qahveh from Arabic qahwa; see qhw in Semitic roots
Other Names: Coffee arabica
Common Names: Coffee. Unroasted coffee.
Homeopathic preparation: Tincture of the raw berries. (Allen’s Encyclopedia).
Dr. Quin, in his Pharmacopoeia Homoeopathica , orders it to be prepared as follows. A drachm of the seeds of the best Arabian Coffee is to be reduced to powder in an iron mortar, which is to be moderately heated, occasionally detaching the mass from the sides of the vessel with a horn spatula. To the powder thus prepared add twelve drachms of alcohol, and put it into a glass vessel; let it remain eight days, and then separate the liquor from the sediment. Let this powder which remains at the bottom of the vessel be pressed free from all moisture, and placed in a glass retort with four ounces of distilled water; boil till one ounce only remains, and mix the clarified liquor with the alcoholic tincture; eighty drops of alcohol is to be added to thirty drops of this mixture, and twice shaken. This constitutes the first attenuation.
This medicine is also prepared by trituration; one grain of the powder is triturated with one hundred grains of sugar of milk, and so on to the thirtieth attenuation, by which the power of the medicine seems to be increased. (Hamilton’s Flora).
N.O. Subclass: Asteridae; Order: Rubiales; Family: Rubiaceae or Madder or Bedstraw Family.
Provings: Allen: Cyclopoedia, V. 3. Cyclop. Drug Path., V. 2. Hering: Guid. Symptoms, V. 4. Jahr: Symp. Codex. Macfarlan: High Pot. Provings. Stapf: Additions to Mat. Med. Pura.
Boecker: Beitrage z Heilkunst, V. 1, p. 188.
Cole: Lancet, 1832, V. 2, p. 274.
Gilchrist: Med. Inv., V. 7, p. 58.
Hale: Hahn. Mo., V. 9, p. 465.
Hahnemann: Essay on Effects, 1803.
Hofer: Abhandlung v Koffee, Frankfurt, 1787.
Howarth: Revista Omiopatica, V. 26, p. 86.
Macfarlan: Hom. Phys., V. 12, p. 282.
Miller: N. A. J. Hom., V. 22, p. 87.
Stapf: Archiv hom. Heilk., V. 2, pt. 3, p. 150.
Wertenweber: Arabische Kaffee, Prag., 1837.
Wibmer: Die Arzneimittel. (Bradford’s Index).
Description of the substance
Evergreen, glabrous shrub or small tree, up to 5 m tall when unpruned; leaves opposite, dark green, glossy, elliptical, acuminate-tipped, short-petioled, 5-20 cm long, 1.5-7.5 cm broad, usually 10-15 cm long and 6 cm broad; flowers white, fragrant, in axillary clusters, opening simultaneously 8-12 days after wetting; corolla tubular, 1 cm long, 5-lobed; calyx small, cup-shaped; fruit a drupe, about 1.5 cm long, oval-elliptic, green when immature, ripening yellow and then crimson, black upon drying, 7-9 months to maturity; seeds usually 2, ellipsoidal, 8.5-12.5 mm long, inner surface deeply grooved, consisting mainly of green corneous endosperm and small embryo; polyembryony recorded. 2,500 dried seed/kg. (Reed, 1976).
Despite its name, C. arabica originated in Ethiopia, where it grows at elevations between 1,375 to 1,830 m. It is believed to have been introduced into Arabia prior to the 15th century. It was first planted in Java in 1690, and in the early 18th century was carried to Surinam, Martinique, and Jamaica. Cultivation soon spread throughout the West Indies and Central America and favorable regions of South America. Later, it reached India and Sri Lanka. Today, nearly 90% of the world's coffee comes from this species (Morton, 1977).
Ranging from Warm Temperate Dry to Rain (with little or no frost) through Tropical Very Dry to Wet Forest Life Zones, coffee is reported to tolerate annual precipitation of 4.8 to 42.9 dm (mean of 109 cases = 15.8), annual temperature of 16.0 to 28.5°C (mean of 108 cases = 24.8), and pH of 4.3 to 8.4 (mean of 45 cases = 6.4) (Duke, 1978, 1979). Arabica coffee thrives from the humid tropics to temperate climates from 5°N lat. to 34°S lat. where temperatures average 11-26.5°C, and from sealevel to 2,500 m altitude. Rainfall needs to be regular, abundant, and well-distributed, from 800-2,500 mm. Ideal conditions at the equator are 1500-1800 mm. A short, relatively dry season may facilitate flowering and/or pollination. Native Ethiopian soils are deep red to brown-red lateritic loams or clay loams of volcanic origin of high to medium fertility with pH 5.3-6.6. In Brazil, similar soils are used plus red-yellow podzolic types with pH 5-7. Optimal pH has been suggested as 4.5-7.0.
Propagation is usually by seed; however, budding, grafting, and cuttings have been used. Traditional method of plants on virgin soil is to put 20 seeds In each hole 3.5 x 3.5m at the beginning of rainy season. Half are eliminated naturally. In Brazil, a more successful method is to raise seedlings in shaded nurseries. At 6-12 months, seedlings are taken to fields, hardened, and then planted on contoured fields 2-3 m apart in 3-5 m rows. Holes are prepared 40 x 40 x 40 cm and 4 seedlings placed in each. Plants may be shaded by taller trees or left undshaded. Coffee is often intercropped with food crops, such as corn, beans, or rice, during the first few years. Clean weed control is necessary throughout the entire season. Pruning is common practice in some districts. Mulches and green manure are commonly used with chemical fertilizers coming more and more into use. Typical application consists of 175 g N per bush, 100 g P, and 175 g K. P and K added in two applicationa and N added over a longer period with 4-5 applications. Other elements added as soils require them. Shading tends to favor leaf and shoot growth at the expense of root growth. It may be useful when plants are young, but later shading may reduce yields, especially when the trees are fertilized.
Average economic age of plants 30-40 years, with some 100 year old plantations still bearing. Trees come into bearing 3-4 years after planting and are in full bearing at 6-8 years. Fruits mature 7-9 months after flowering. Selective picking of ripe red fruits produces highest quality. Crop ripens over a period of several weeks. In Brazil all berries are stripped at one time onto ground cloths, usually in April to June; in Ethiopia, harvest season is October to December after the rainy season. Berries are dried in sun; in some humid areas, artificial heat is used. Depulping after picking is increasingly practiced. (Reed, 1976)