Afternoon Tea, High Tea, and Cream Tea. Oh, so confusing to us Americans. At some point in my life I am going to fly to England and visit all of the china shops, meander around small villages, and visit every tea house I can find. I'll figure it all out and maybe write a book about it. =)
In the meantime, I'll keep reading...
High Tea provides some sustenance, intended for workers who come home famished and cannot wait until a late dinner to eat. It is intended to be enjoyed by those in the middle or lower classes. (No matter the class, I do believe buns, pasties, cheese and onion pies, muffins, and crumpets sound exceptionally splendid.)
Afternoon Tea appears to be a more dainty event, popularized by the 7th Duchess of Bedford as a way fill the gap between lunch and dinner.
Cream Tea is another variation of the Afternoon Tea. Also quite proper and civilized, it offers a limited menu of tea, scones, jam, and clotted cream. Those in Cornwall and Devon continue to disagree on the correct assembly of the clotted cream. Does the jam top the cream which tops the scone? Or is it cream, jam, scone?