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Manners and Etiquette at an English Tea Party

Manners and Etiquette at an English Tea Party

What is it about a tea party that makes us sit up straighter, wear a pretty dress and worry about our manners? This class will help you understand the curiosity of the English tea party.

Exploring the Traditions of Tea-Taking
When you picture a quintessentially English tea, you most likely see a three tier cake stand bedecked with crust-less sandwich-fingers, dainty, opulent cakes, and crowned, perhaps with pastel coloured macaroons. Pretty (and tasty!) though the vision is, this is the 21st century’s rather decadent fusion of many traditions of tea taking. It might be what a tea party looks like today, but it was not how it looked in the past.

The “Englishness” of Tea
Tea was first imported from China in the late 17th century. Today, we continue to quench our insatiable thirst for tea from foreign import, sourcing our English breakfasts, Earl greys, and Orange Pekoes primarily from China, India and Sri Lanka. How, then, did this exotic beverage come to be so much a part of the English character? How did tea make its way from porcelain in the parlours of the wealthy into chipped builder’s mugs?

Join Caroline for a truly English tea party and,

  • Journey through the history of “taking tea” from 1700 to present day 
  • Learn how and why tea became such an integral part of daily English life 
  • Practice the ‘good manners’ and etiquette expected at a tea table 
  • And, of course, enjoy the most important parts of any tea party: excellent teas, cake, and conversation

Caroline will be drawing on and illustrating her discussion with a wealth of contemporary paintings, diaries and etiquette manuals. It is recommended that you have a good command of English for this event.

COST: £280 for up to FOUR people. This event can be arranged for larger numbers. Please contact Caroline direct by email to arrange your Manners and Etiquette Tea Party.


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