Friday, June 12, 2009

Victorian English Tea Time

One of the most elegant traditions of the Victorian Era was Tea Time, which was usually set for 4:00 or 5:00 p.m. We often read about it in Victorian novels.

I have participated in High Tea once in my life, on a 7-day ocean cruise. Tea was served each afternoon at 4:00 p.m. in the dining room, by waiters in formal attire. There were fabulous breads, butters and spreads, finger sandwiches, small cakes and tarts, tiny cookies, and of course, hot tea, served in fine china. I could have lived on that ship for the rest of my life, partaking of tea every day!

For more information on English Tea Time, you can go here.


  1. very interesting article,...english peopole loves tea.

  2. J&- Thanks for dropping by. I'm glad you liked the post.

  3. Oh, I love coming here. Yes thank you; I would love to come to tea.

  4. Tea- I wish it were more of an Amercian tradition. I would love it.

  5. Hey Barbara. Didn't know you had this blog. Love it! I'm a tea fan, especially Victorian tea times. My husband and I are making a tea time every afternoon at 3 PM. I break out all my collectible tea cups, pots, etc. and bake some yummy stuff and we have a wonderful, relaxing time.

  6. Donna- I think you were on vacation when I introduced my new blog. I'm so glad you found it!

    That is so nice that you and your husband are doing Tea Time! I think we Americans should learn to relax more. Don't you?

  7. I love the background. I was looking at backgrounds from that site just this weekend!!
    Love it!!
    And I truly believe I have that tea set.
    Mother's day gift .. I ADORE TEA!
    My picture from my mom's day post is on the post here and I think it's the same tea set from the English tea store. My picture is horrid though. Cell phone pic. The rest of the set is up in its box hiddne away for fear of toddlers. Hubby also bought me afterwards the tea MUGS which I have one of those out also and LOVE the sleepytime tea in that one.
    What is your favorite tea? The Afternoon Darjeeling tea I love, green tea.. I love the taste of earl grey & black tea but many of them are too strong for my nerves.
    I'll shut up now. But I am putting your blog on my blog roll.

  8. Hi Babara,

    Your site is fascinating! Thanks for such a mine of info and opinion.

    I thought you might want to know - especially as someone so interested in 'how it was done' in the Victorian era! - that there's a BIG difference between Afternoon (or Low) Tea, and High Tea. Your post is about afternoon tea - the elegant meal of dainty sandwiches and pastries and tea served out of fine china. High tea, meanwhile, is a very working-class meal, usually served slightly later (between 5 and 6) to labourers when they get home. It is a proper meal more like a dinner with pies, cold meats, cheeses, thick chunks of bread, strong tea served in mugs, etc. People often think that 'high' refers to the high-class elegance of tea-time when in fact, the high-class meal is called 'low tea' because it would have been served on low side-tables in a sitting room, originally, whereas 'high tea' was a lower-class meal served at on the main, high kitchen table of a working-class household.