"Take a dish of tay with me. . ."
Posted by Laura W on January 20, 1998 at 16:46:05:
In response to Dish of tea?, written by Joyce on January 19, 1998 at 23:58:45
] One thing though - before they go to the dance Mr and Mrs Edwards drink a dish of tea. What the heck is that and how would you drink it?
As Miranda says, it's just the term they used for the thing they drank tea from. It was wide and shallow, almost like a saucer. I gather the purpose was to let it cool faster so that it could be drunk (and is probably closer to the original tea-drinking vessels used in at the time in China). I have no idea when people started drinking it in teacups, but I have heard (read) of people pouring their tea out of the teacup and into the saucer to cool it, and drinking it from the saucer. It was considered gauche, or at best old-fashioned, and probably was something done by older people who drank it from "dishes" in their youth.
I don't recall the scene at Lyme with Captain Wentworth, but I'll bet they got it right. Also, in A Midwife's Tale, which I saw last night on PBS, there is a scene where Martha Ballard visits the young wife of the preacher, and they have dishes of tea on the table in front of them.
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