Feast: A History of Grand Eating

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J. Cape, 2002 - Religion - 349 pages
A unique and fascinating history of grand eating by one of the UK’s best-known communicators. Sharing a meal, in particular a grand one, has always been a complex social mechanism for uniting and dividing people. Such an event could signal peace, a marriage, a victory, an alliance, a coming-of-age, a coronation or a funeral. The feast was a vehicle for display and ostentation, for the parade of rank and hierarchy, for flattering and influencing people as well as providing a theatre in which to exercise the art of conversation and the display of manners. In an age that has virtually abolished the shared meal as a central feature of daily living, Feast presents a revelatory picture of a world we have lost. Beautifully illustrated, it traces fashions in food and the etiquette of eating -- from the elegance of the Roman villa to the austerity of the monastic refectory, from the splendours of the Renaissance banquet to the rigours of the Victorian dinner party.

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User Review  - wealhtheowwylfing - LibraryThing

A history of upper class meals and the customs surrounding them, from antiquity to the present. The book almost entirely deals with Western Europe, particularly England, Italy, and France. It's a very ... Read full review

FEAST: A History of Grand Eating

User Review  - Kirkus

An entertaining survey of the table, Babylonian to Edwardian, examining the political and social forces that shaped what appeared on it."The meal and everything connected with it has been and, to a ... Read full review


The age of Apicius
Cena and convivium

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About the author (2002)

Sir Roy Strong is a well known historian and garden writer, lecturer, columnist, critic and regular contributor to both radio and television. He was director of England's National Portrait Gallery from 1967 to 1973 and director of the Victoria & Albert Museum from 1974 to 1987. He is also an enthusiastic gardener who has designed gardens for Elton John and Gianni Versace and contributed designs to the Prince of Wales's garden at Highgrove. His many books include "Creating Small Gardens," "Creating Small Formal Gardens," "The Artist and the Garden," "Royal Gardens" and "Garden Party,"

What the critics said about "Garden Party" by Roy Strong

"His persona on the page is as large as life. This collection of witty stories about gardens and gardening amounts to the sort of conversation most people would love to join in."
-- "BBC Gardeners'World"

"Sir Roy writes with candour in a style that is intimate and accessible, and his ideas are imbued with energy and erudition."
-- "Times Literary Supplement

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