Ukraine craftsmen make record-breaking samovar

KIEV, March 17 (RIA Novosti) - Ukraine could soon host a tea party that would even impress Alice in Wonderland, as local craftsmen have made a giant samovar capable of serving up a cup for about 1,800 people, a newspaper reported Friday.

According to Fakty i Kommentarii, the huge utensil, versions of which have been used in Slavic nations for making tea for centuries, has been named Kharkov in honor of the city where it was made. It is 1.8 meters high, weighs about 305 kilograms (670 lbs) and can contain a whopping 360 liters (95 gallons) of water.

The samovar, which is seen as a key image in the plays of Russian dramatist Anton Chekhov, is a traditionally handmade and expensive item. It took 40 craftsmen in eastern Ukraine three months to make this particular attribute of a cozy and hospitable household at a cost of nearly $100,000. In Chekhov's era, the water was heated up by burning wood or coal, but the newspaper said the new giant could also work on electricity.

A representative of the Guinness Book of Records in Ukraine, Igor Pidchiba, said the samovar was, indeed, the biggest in the world, which means that the Lewis Carroll's heroine and all her friends would have more than enough for everyone and probably all of their relatives.

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