During the 19th Century it was customary to have 2 meals a day morning and evening, during this time the 7th Duchess of Bedford complained of ‘having that sinking feeling’ during the late afternoon. The solution was to have a pot of tea and a light snack during the afternoon, this became more of a social gathering in the summer and was often coupled with a walk.
Before long it was fashionable to drink tea and have sandwiches in the middle of the afternoon.
High Tea or Afternoon Tea
The differences between High Tea and Low Tea (Afternoon Tea) is time of serving and type of food, Low Tea was served mid afternoon about 4 O’clock just before the fashionable promenade in Hyde Park and consists of finger foods, an afternoon snack, served on fine bone china and very classy . High Tea would be served later in the day about 5 or 6 O’clock instead of the late dinner and be more of a meal. The names derive from the height of the tables on which the meals were served, high tea would have been served at dinner tables.
Afternoon Tea or Cream Tea
Afternoon tea is made up of three courses and a pot of tea. A savoury course with tea and sandwiches, the scone course with clotted cream and jam and a third course of cakes.
Cream tea is just one course of scones with clotted cream and jam with a pot of tea. The big question that prevails is does the cream or jam go on the scone first.