Tea party

From WikiMD's Food, Medicine & Wellness Encyclopedia

Tea Party refers to a social gathering where tea is served, often accompanied by light refreshments. Originating in Britain during the early 19th century, the tradition has since spread worldwide and has been adapted to various cultural contexts.

History[edit | edit source]

The tradition of the tea party began in Britain during the early 19th century. The concept was introduced by Anna, the Duchess of Bedford, who started the trend of having tea with light refreshments in the afternoon to stave off hunger before dinner. This practice quickly gained popularity among the British upper class and eventually became a social event known as the "afternoon tea" or "tea party".

Types of Tea Parties[edit | edit source]

There are several types of tea parties, each with its own unique characteristics and traditions.

Afternoon Tea[edit | edit source]

Afternoon tea, also known as "low tea", is a British tradition that involves serving tea with a variety of small sandwiches, scones, and pastries. It is typically served in the late afternoon and is often associated with social events or special occasions.

High Tea[edit | edit source]

High tea, contrary to its name, is a more substantial meal that is served in the early evening. It includes tea, but also heavier dishes like meat, fish, and baked goods. Despite its name, high tea is considered less formal than afternoon tea.

Cream Tea[edit | edit source]

Cream tea is a type of afternoon tea that is popular in the West Country of England. It involves serving tea with scones, clotted cream, and strawberry jam.

Cultural Variations[edit | edit source]

Tea parties vary greatly depending on the cultural context in which they are held. For example, in Japan, the Japanese tea ceremony is a formal and ritualized event that involves the ceremonial preparation and presentation of matcha, a powdered green tea. In Russia, tea parties often involve samovars, large urns used to boil water and brew tea.

Tea Party in Popular Culture[edit | edit source]

The tea party has been a popular theme in various forms of media, most notably in literature. The most famous example is the Mad Hatter's tea party in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

See Also[edit | edit source]


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Contributors: Prab R. Tumpati, MD