Brunch has become quite a common word in the English language. Is there a similar word for a meal in place of dinner and lunch? (A phrase will also do).
In US English, an afternoon snack is the best term I know of.
In the UK, there are lots of options, but they’re fraught with geographic and social connotations.
Afternoon tea will be understood everywhere, but seen in some places as upper-class; it’s traditionally not a full meal, but just eg a piece of cake or a sandwich and a cup of tea or coffee.
High tea is probably most analogous to brunch; it’s a light early-evening meal, usually had instead of rather than as well as dinner, and like with brunch/breakfast, someone who eats dinner or supper most evenings might well have high tea instead once in a while. High tea also has slight upper-class connotations in some areas, I think, but not everywhere.
Tea on its own can mean many things; to many people in the Midlands and the north of England, it means something like this, the main evening meal, but typically eaten rather earlier in the evening than people who call it dinner would eat. This usage used to have strong working-class connotations in the past, but now is more of a geographical distinction, I think.
While on the subject, there’s also supper; for some people again, supper means the main meal of the evening (I was brought up that way), while for others, who had probably dinner or high tea as their main meal, it’s a late-evening snack.
This is a run-down off the top of my head; there are almost certainly some nuances and distinctions I’ve missed. Whole dissertations have probably been written on the hermeneutics of English mealtime terminology…
Well, depending on where you live, dinner could be a midday, late-afternoon/early-evening, or late-night meal. Lunch is usually a midday meal. In reality, there is no word for a meal in place of lunch and dinner (I assume you use dinner to mean an evening meal after a midday lunch.)
Dinner could be the main meal of your day, and whether you have it at noon, two o'clock, five o'clock, or eight o'clock, it remains your dinner. If you are going to have a substantial meal after breakfast, with only a very late snack in view before bed, then that meal becomes your dinner, no matter how weird that sounds.
I should point out, though, that in this day and age, especially for the yuppies, formal mealtimes may not be the norm. Plus, the usage of dinner for a midday or mid-afternoon meal, and other such formalisms as tea, etc, may now be considered quite old-fashioned. Thus, I would recommend sticking with either late lunch or early dinner for this particular situation.
There is no single mixed word along the lines of brunch for this. Sometimes people joke by coining a mixture of lunch and dinner/supper, giving lupper, dunch, etc. (As Kosmonaut mentioned.)
You might refer to a small afternoon meal as afternoon tea, though to me (American) this sounds British and upper-class. Otherwise you'd probably just call it a snack or a late lunch, if it's bigger than a snack.
protected by Community♦ Oct 25 '13 at 16:20
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