Hi and happy Thursday! I am joining Vintage Thingie Thursday at Colororadolady today with a fun part of vintage English thingies...a toasting fork!
Toasting forks came into being because of the need to be able to toast things over open fires...before toasters as we know them as counter top appliances were invented. The bread slice, muffin or crumpet was pierced by the fork end and held to the fire to toast on one side then turned and toasted on the other. Toasting forks were still used in England into the 1940-1950s when most fireplaces were replaced with 3-4 bar electric heaters. But folks swore...at least our families did...that a crumpet toasted by the fire had a far superior taste than those toasted in the new fangled toasters or under the grill of the kitchen cooker. The toasted goodie was then buttered and eaten with the rest of your tea.
The toasting forks were usually made of brass or with brass fittings and a cast iron shaft. The finials cover the gamut. The funny looking one is called the Lincoln Imp for a local Lincolnshire mythical creature. The stag was an early Victorian piece and exceptionally well made. Fun, huh???
I still find them periodically when we are in England on a buying trip. They don't last in the shop though. These photos are from my archives of past items at Time Was Antiques.
Queen Elizabeth II arrived in Australia for an 11 day state visit, having sufficiently recovered from a cold a week ago...a major accomplishment when you are 85! The visit is an early part of her celebration of her Diamond Jubilee year...1952-2012
Here is a link to the BBC coverage of the arrival with a great video:
BBC Queen Elizabeth in Australia