The English customs they affect all circumstances of the life of the British. Many of them are known worldwide, but others will be surprising or, at least, curious.
The English are famous for being traditional. For this reason, many of the customs of England began centuries ago and have not ceased to be respected. However, others are more modern such as those related to the football. In any case, all of them make up a good part of British culture and it will be essential for you to know them if you travel to those lands. We are going to take a tour of the most interesting ones.
Table of Contents
England customs: from tea to Boxing Day
We will begin our review of the customs of England with the most famous of them all, known throughout the world: the five o'clock tea. But then we will see others that are less explained and, above all, much more peculiar.
The tea ceremony
The British have tea every day between three and five in the afternoon. It is a custom that dates back, at least, to the seventeenth century. At that time it was practiced by the upper classes, but nowadays all English people stop at work for daily tea at that time.
In fact, this habit is so ingrained that it was carried over to the British colonies. The result is that, for example, also in Australia they drink tea every afternoon.
To accompany the drink, the English also have cookies or cakes. Among the latter are very popular scones, some round and sweet rolls that come from Scotland. But it is not the only time of day that the British drink tea. There is also the so-called tea break. It is a short break that is done at any time of the day to have a cup of the drink.
The English have very different schedules than ours and we can consider them a tradition. They get up at 6 in the morning, normally, to go to work. As for food, they do it between 12 and 14 hours. Is he lunch and usually lasts about forty-five minutes.
Normally, they finish their work at 18. Even shops close at that time, which will shock you if you are used to Spanish schedules. Shortly after they eat dinner and go to bed early.
However, the pubs, which we will tell you about later, close at around 11 or 12 o'clock. And there are also discos that stay open until the morning. But the most important thing you should know about English schedules is that they are extremely punctual. Therefore, you should not keep them waiting.
Drive to the left
Surely you already know, but in an article on the customs of England we must mention it. The British drive in the left lane and their cars are right hand drive. The origin of this habit is said to even predate the invention of the automobile.
Apparently in the XNUMXth century nobles made it fashionable to drive their floats on the left as an aristocratic touch. They were quickly imitated and the custom has prevailed to this day. It has even spread to its former colonies. The left lane is also used in NZ, India o Australia.
The English are not characterized by their good gastronomy. Obviously, you will find exceptions. But their diet is not particularly tasty. Breakfast is one of your most important meals. Includes scrambled eggs, bacon, juice, cereal, coffee, milk, and toast or pastries.
On the other hand, at noon they hardly have a sandwich or a salad. Is he lunch that we mentioned to you and it helps them to get until tea time, which we have also told you about. Finally, they have an early and hearty dinner.
Dinner is, along with breakfast, his most important meal. It consists of a first and a second course, the latter with garnish. In turn, this can be salad, boiled vegetables or potatoes.
As for the typical dishes, one of the most cooked is the sunday roast. It is a roast of various meats such as cow, chicken, lamb or even duck. It is served with roasted potatoes and vegetables, as well as with a sauce made with onion and the meat's own juice. However, the most popular food of the British is the famous fish and chips or fried fish with potatoes. You will find it everywhere and, normally, it is accompanied by sauce, especially tartar.
As for desserts, the butter and bread pudding. Its recipe dates back to the XNUMXth century and also includes egg, milk, nutmeg, raisins and various spices. Sometimes, they accompany it with custard or some cream, although you can also taste it alone.
Finally, if we have to explain to you about the typical drink of England, we would be obliged to go back to tea. However, in order not to repeat ourselves, we will mention you Beer, the most consumed in pubs. The British ask for it pints, that is to say, for glasses of something more than five hundred milliliters.
With this section we come to tell you about some of the peculiar festivities of the English. The Boxing Day It is celebrated on December 26 and it is a festival whose origins date back to the Middle Ages.
At that time, the nobles distributed baskets of food to their servants. The tradition continued and reached our days. However, Boxing Day currently has a very different character. Today is a date when the English give each other gifts and take the opportunity to make purchases. Also, that day there is English football league matches and it is customary for parents to bring their children to them. Like other traditions in England, it has spread to other English-speaking countries.
We just told you about the English football league. And we must stop in this sport, since for the English it is almost a religion. This happens in many other parts of the world, but the British are true fans of the so-called beautiful game.
Not for nothing, they are considered its inventors back in the XNUMXth century. Every match day, the English meet in pubs and then head to the stadium. When the clash is over, they make the reverse trip to comment on the most outstanding events while savoring a pint of beer.
We just mentioned pubs to you too. It is the name given in England to the bars and it is the place where the British meet their friends. Many of these establishments are more than a century old and, therefore, very old.
Visiting the pub is one of England's most deeply rooted customs among its inhabitants. Many of them do it daily before or after dinner. So much so that pub is short for public house, that is to say, of public house.
Other festivities among the customs of England
In addition to Boxing Day, the British have other special celebrations. It is the case of the peculiar guy fawkes night. Commemorate this character's failed attempt to assassinate the king James i in 1605. They were the events that were called the Gunpowder Plot and they sought to install a Catholic monarch on the throne.
But what interests us the most, regardless of history, is that the English remember these events every fifth of November with fireworks and eating caramel apples.
On the other hand, the festivities of Passover they have a long tradition in England. In some cases, they are not very different from ours. But they also have their peculiarities. For example, the so-called maundy thursday. As its name suggests, it takes place on the Thursday before Easter and, among the activities that take place, the Royal maundy or delivery, by the Queen, of coins to citizens.
Easter Friday is also a public holiday in England. For them, it is a day of religious meditation and is known as Good Friday. We can tell you the same about the following Monday, when there is no work either.
The changing of the guard
For the English, everything that has to do with his monarchy It's very important. They appreciate the royal family. And, above all, they are very jealous of the customs that surround them. This is the case of the famous changing of the guard in the Buckingham Palace.
Every day at eleven thirty in the morning between May and July (every other day the rest of the year), you can see this ceremony. It is surprising to see the soldiers in their large fur hats move with a martial air. However, we must also tell you that, if you are not a great fan of this type of act, it may be a bit heavy for you.
In conclusion, we have explained some of the main English customs. Many of them are hundreds of years old, but others are more recent. In any case, we have had to leave other English traditions in the pipeline, such as, for example, the midsummer celebration at Stonehenge, the world famous megalithic monument located in the county of Wiltshire. Or the singular rolling cheese festival which consists of a race down the slope to reach a four-kilogram cheese. Anyway, you only have to travel to England and enjoy these customs.