Tuesday, May 08, 2007

dinner vs. tea

I like on the different names and times of meals in the UK:
Dinner at Noon
Meal Times explained

An Australian perspective:
Many an Australian youngster in earlier times would have said tea, not dinner, and we know from the literature that for much of early modern history dinner meant the main meal, originally eaten in the middle of the day. Why did the time change, and whatever happened to lunch? What times's dinner, Ma
I've been chided lately for saying "tea" instead of DINNER by someone snootier than me.
(Actually I think we said both in our family. Lucky I'm only aspirational to be anti-aspirational anyway.)
I had to make sure I didn’t say dinner instead of tea for the evening meal, and things like that, or my parents would say, ‘Dinner? Where did you pick that up from?’ Aspirationalism: The Search for Respect in an Unequal Society
Admittedly, it was quicker to find something on this by googling class + dinner tea


Tony Tea said...

I have lunch for dinner and dinner for tea.

boynton said...

In the NLA link, did you see the Big Dinner, T?

Bwca said...

This sort of thing is apparently why HRH Will's Old Etonian friends gave Kate Middleton's mother such a hard time.

'Dinner', one might safely assume, is when dining out, at a restaurant or at another's home by invitation; and would probably be about 8pm.

Families however, especially with younger children, would dine much earlier, whatever their income or old school; and if it's at 6:30 PM then it is safe to say 'tea'.

High Tea is the 5pm snackette one might have so one might last until that 8pm 'dinner by invitation'.

Oh for goodness sake!
Nanny is horrified by all this.
best regards,
Jonathon Gathorne-Hardy

boynton said...


I like the sound of Tea - that is, I fail to find it offensive (as TT does)- and would lament its disappearance from the local vernacular.
(Except that I could get to prefer snackette. especially while waiting for a Dinner invitation/invite.)