Tuesday 29 April 2014

Toffs or Chavs? How Posh Are You?

According to Kate Fox in her latest book ‘Watching The English’ what words you use can determine what class you are.


1. A lower middle class person says pardon. An upper class person says sorry or what. The working class person may drop the t and say wha.

2. One word that makes the higher classes squirm is the word toilet. They say loo or lavatory. Bog is never acceptable unless in jest. Genteel euphemisms such as gents, ladies, bathroom, powder room, and privy are very middle class.

3. It’s been suggested that the word serviette was taken up by the lower and middle classes who found napkin a bit too close to the word nappy and wanted something that sounded a bit more refined. Serviette is now regarded as irredeemably lower class.

4. Dinner or tea? it’s only a working class hallmark if you use it to refer to the midday meal, which should be called lunch or luncheon. Calling your evening meal tea is also working class. The higher echelons call this meal supper. Dinner is for a formal occasion and never, ever use the term dinner party, it so middle class.

5. An upholstered seat for two or more people is called a settee or a couch if you are from the middle to lower classes. It’s a sofa if you live in Downton Abbey.

6. What do they call the room in which the settee/sofa is to be found? Settees are found in lounges or living rooms and sofas in sitting rooms or drawing rooms.
Drawing room is slightly pretentious so sitting room has become acceptable.

7. The upper and middle classes insist that the sweet course at the end of a meal is called pudding.  Afters will certainly also activate the class radar and get you demoted. Dessert is the least offensive of the three.

So which one are you? 

Have a terrific Tuesday all.


  1. Irredeemably middle class and proud of it.
    Cheers! Gail.

  2. Oh wez super Pozh Molly. Great to be back, have mizzed you xxoxxxx

    Mollie and Alfie

  3. Hmmm based on language use - we would fall into upper class but only because americans ten to use the upper class words as everyday words.

  4. I have another problem, Im American but I may guilty of wanting to live in England so bad that I sometimes talk like I do. For example I call desert pudding quite often and I love tea

    retro rover

  5. Molly this is a hard one..i say sorry..i say loo..i say couch and loungeroom breakfast is brekkie..afternoon tea is smoko lunch is lunch dinner is tea..supper is late evening snacks..us Aussies are a mixed bunch :0 hugs fozziemum xxx

  6. Middle class I think,
    Here in the South we say excuse me instead of Pardon etc. As more folks from around the country have moved here we discovered most only say excuse me when they do something like burping. MOL and when you say excuse me to get by them, they look at you like you have lost your mind.
    We have our meals in this order breakfast, lunch and supper.
    Hugs madi and what a fun post

  7. Well, Miz Molly....since I'm on the other side of the pond, I am enjoying seeing the differences in how we employ these words! I only learned through DOWNTON ABBEY and blogging with British pals, that "pudding" referred to what we Yanks call "dessert!" Supper is very Midwest (where I live), but looked down on in the western part of the states where one says, "Dinner." Miz Molly, I want to go to your country but I want to listen and learn because though we speak the same language, I think the meanings of many words are so different! And you look darling in your little cap today!!!!!

  8. i can't decide what i am, our couch is in the living room... i use the bathroom when i need to go....
    I eat breakfast, lunch and dinner, I say sorry... and napkins are paper or most of the time paper towels.

  9. Middle class baby! XOXO - Bacon

  10. I'm glad no one can hear us when we talk at home, hahahahaha. Pardon is very common here ( I guessed it, ha!) but mostly the people say: uhhumhuhmm and wag with their hands when they tackle you or run you down in the supermarkets.... no idea what class they are, probably déclassé lol. Have a super tuesday dear Molly!

  11. Middle class for the most part, but I'm American, so the vocabulary isn't as much of a class indicator. For some reason my mother always said supper, but I have always said dinner...pudding is out of the Jello pudding box, and it's a specific kind of dessert at the end of dinner. Oh it's so much fun to contemplate all the little differences in what people call things. ("Bog" is a new one to me, ew.)

  12. Language isn't such a big deal here in my area (just outside Washington, DC). The area has a VERY diverse population, so no one pays attention to someone's choice of words. Heck, we are just pleased when the language being spoken is actually English. LOL!

  13. We are going to yell toilet. What is worse "potty."
    Lily & Edward

  14. Well Molly wesa don't really nose cos us's pugs tends to have a language all our owns.
    stella rose

  15. In Canada we seem to be a blend of British and American...probably more American with each generation, though. North American, we could say.

    Interesting that our human grew up saying "couch" for "sofa," but she seldom hears it from anyone else.

    We don't use "tea" here, though, not typically. At least not in our human's upper lower class world. LOL.

    Dinner, growing up among country folk, was for the larger meal of the day, either noon or at "supper" time.

    We *do* say "sorry" a lot, though....That's so stereotypical of Canadians.

  16. barefoot country girl, here. i don't do snooty pooty! :)

  17. THIS is so Interesting... We don't really care if THEY call it Tea Dinner Lunch or Supper... as long as they don't call us LATE fur it. BaaaaaWaaaaah.
    Toe MAY TOE or Toe MAW Toe... they still TASTE the same. RIGHT?

  18. I am the kind that will take any desserts that nobody wants!

  19. Ha HA Frankie! we agree!
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Greta

  20. Interesting. We don't use a lot of those words I think. And I'd say that most of the lower class things are what I use! Lol

  21. Dear Molly,

    I will eat the desert, and Ojo will sleep on the couch. What does that make us?


  22. Wow...we just loved reading what everyone else is....Mama says we have champagne tastes with a beer pocket book...so I guess that makes us in the middle somewhere!

    Dory, Jakey, Arty & Bilbo

  23. Hey Molly!
    Wow, this is really fun! I gotta say think I'm definitely an Outdoorsy Redneck. Not sure where that falls on the list, but saying the word LOO makes me giggle. Sounds like a peep is singing rather than pottying. BOL
    Grr and Woof,
    Sarge, Pol Comm

  24. Oh dear, we aren't sure what we are because we think we mix all those words up and use whatever comes to mind first:)

    Woos - Phantom, Ciara, and Lightning

  25. Mommy says at her age, if a word even close to what she was looking for pops into her head, she's going to use it before she forgets the word all together. Toilet...bathroom,,,loo...just as long as someone points her in the right direction and she gets there in time is what's impawtant. MOL. XO, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

  26. One of the best signs I have ever seen in England read "English spoken, American understood." Love Dolly

  27. All Yorkies are upper class. All Griffs are lowers class. We meet somewhere in the middle

  28. You sure have been studying the class thing quite a bit lately and seem to have some real valid points.

  29. We're lower class.....we may use crass language, but our grammar is correct.

    XXXOOO Bella & Roxy

  30. Hmmm......it seems I am a mixture of all of the above!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

  31. Oh my. Well, we're stuck on #5. We don't have a couch, sofa, or a settee - and if we did, we wouldn't be allowed on it. The closest we get is the sitzbank. What does saying "sitzbank" mean?
    Yours sincerely,
    Margaret Thatcher

  32. Hmmmm . . . mom uses words you did not list so we are not sure!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  33. Love this post and your picture too!! Not sure which fits us, we'll have to think about it.

    Mommy said to tell you it doesn't matter that your Mother's Day has come and gone. We still want you and your Mon in oir Smilebox so PLEASE send us a picture. Mother's are mothers regardless of the day.

    ♥♥♥Mona & Prissy

  34. We use different words in the land of Canada, but I'm pretty sure we're middle class. Beamer would like to argue that he's upper class, but he's just full of it.

  35. I think we are at the bottom of the social ladder. Most of our words would have us demoted straight away!
    Wyatt and Family

  36. Mom says we are undoubtedly middle class! Is that good?? What did we win?
    Wally & Sammy

  37. It may be different here in the states.....LOL when I was a kid my grandmother referred to the couch which was in the living room as a davenport. No idea....

  38. Dunno which Molly, but one fing we do nah is no one would git Freya in dat at wiv out a struggle :-) x x x

  39. LOl my grandmother was Canadian and she used many of those words. (not the swear ones :/) She always said chesterfield instead of sofa.