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In the United Kingdom, Ireland and some Commonwealth realms, elevenses is a snack that is similar to afternoon tea, but eaten in the morning. It is generally less savoury than brunch, and might consist of some cake or biscuits with a cup of tea. The name refers to the time of day that it is taken: around 11 am. The word "elevensies" is seen as a little old fashioned.

In Australia and New Zealand, it is called morning tea or smoko . Choice of foods consumed at morning tea vary from cakes, pastries or lamingtons, or biscuits, to just coffee. In the Royal Australian Navy it is commonly referred to as "Morno's".

In many Spanish-speaking cultures the term las onces (the elevens in Spanish) is used to describe a similar meal. Among Chileans, the tradition was known as under the same name, although in modern times, it has shifted in most respects to later in the afternoon, more closely reflecting the pattern of British "tea time".

In literature

For elevenses, Winnie the Pooh preferred honey on bread with condensed milk. He is also said to have coined the word "smackerel", having an equivalent meaning to 'elevenses'.

In the story "Percy and Harold," which appeared in 1956's Percy the Small Engine (the 11th installment of W.V. Awdry's The Railway Series), Percy suddenly accelerates, causing the guard to spill the tea he had brought for "elevenses."

Paddington Bear often took elevenses at the antique shop on Portobello Road run by his friend Mr Gruber and usually received some sound advice about his current thorny problem at the same time.

In the Middle-earth universe by J. R. R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings), it is a meal eaten by Hobbits between second breakfast and luncheon.

The term appears extensively throughout the novel ''Don't Stop the Carnival, by Herman Wouk, in which various characters gleefully partake of "elevenses" at every opportunity, usually accompanied by alcoholic beverages.

The idea also appears in Ballet Shoesand other Shoes'' books by Noel Streatfeild, and in Thursday's Children , Listen to the Nightingale by Rumer Godden.

The term smoko had appeared on Terry Pratchett novel THE THIEF OF TIME when Lu Tze and Lobsang Ludd where travelling to Ankh Morpork

See also

British cuisine

Coffee break

Custard cream

External links

A nice cup of tea and a sit down - an elevenses news site

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Elevenses

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