By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

´╗┐Title: Frost's Laws and By-Laws of American Society
 - A condensed but thorough treatise on etiquette and its usages in America, containing plain and reliable directions for deportment in every situation in life.
Author: Frost, S. Annie (Sarah Annie)
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Frost's Laws and By-Laws of American Society
 - A condensed but thorough treatise on etiquette and its usages in America, containing plain and reliable directions for deportment in every situation in life." ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



Letters of Introduction,
Salutes and Salutations
Dinner Company,
Morning and Evening Parties,
Street Etiquette,
Riding and Driving,
Etiquette in Church,
Etiquette for Places of Amusement,
Hotel Etiquette,
Etiquette at Weddings,
Baptisms and Funerals.
Etiquette with Children and at the Card Table,
Visiting Cards,
The Lady's Toilet,
The Gentleman's Toilet,





For a long time the little book which we now offer to the public
has been wanted in the library of the fashionable world; the
customs, the etiquette, the different obligations which society
imposes upon those who live in its midst, change frequently, and
although the general principles are the same, although politeness
and civility are of all epoques and times, nevertheless there are
few persons so entirely at home in all the forms that they do not
on some occasion feel hesitation as to the proper manner of
conducting themselves.

Indeed, besides the broader and more essential rules of
politeness, there are certain conventionalities adopted by good
society, which, sanctioned by custom and absolute obligation,
cannot, without some good reason, be neglected by the truly polite
gentleman or lady. Every day the question is raised whether such
and such a custom is adopted, received, and proper; there will
constantly arise a doubt about the details of some ceremony, the
proper hour for some entertainment, the true etiquette for some
occasion. At such a time, there is a regret felt that there is not
at hand, in one's own library, a safe guide, an experienced
counsellor, who will answer such questions, so trifling in
appearance, so important in reality.

A breach of etiquette, an involuntarily omission of some point of
politeness, may often have a serious influence upon the future of
the perpetrator. None of these little details are to be scorned
they have each and every one a value.

It is to meet the want already mentioned that this little volume
has been prepared. It makes no claim to originality; but its aim
is to be perfectly reliable. English, French, and American
authorities of weight have been consulted, and nothing admitted
that was not sanctioned by experience and the customs of the best

Books, it is very true, have been already written upon this
subject; but they are for the most part filled with useless
details, and often do not contain what is of most importance. The
aim of the Editor of the present work has been to avoid both
extremes, to select only what was useful, reliable, and well
established, and to reject only what was valueless or mere

The subjects treated are all classed that they may have easy
reference, and admit of consultation at a moment's notice.

The little book goes forth with one pretension only, one ambition
alone--to be useful.


Etiquette and Its Uses
Letters of Introduction
Salutes and Salutations
Dinner Company
Morning and Evening Parties
Street Etiquette
Riding and Driving
Etiquette In Church
Etiquette For Places of Amusemfent
Hotel Etiquette
Wedding Etiquette
Etiquette For Baptisms
Etiquette For Funerals
Etiquette of the Studio
Table Etiquette
Etiquette With Children
Games With Cards
Visiting Cards
Letter Writing
The Lady's Toilet
The Gentleman's Toilet




THERE are a great many people, in other respects perfectly
estimable (which makes the complaint against them the more
grievous) who maintain that the laws of nature are the only laws
of binding force among the units which compose society. They do
not assert their doctrine in so many words, but practically they
avow it, and they are not slow to express their contempt for the
"ridiculous etiquette" which is declared by their opponents to be
essential to the well being of society. These people are probably
a law to themselves in such matters; they obey in their rules of
conduct those instincts of propriety and good manners which were
implanted in them at their birth, and cultivated probably by their
education, and therefore they have small need to study especially
how to conduct themselves in their intercourse with society. In
such cases, their opposition to a written code of manners is
rather an affair of theory than of practice, and it seems rather
absurd that they should so emphatically denounce the system which
they themselves, by example rather than precept, thoroughly carry
out. They would be probably as averse to committing any act of
rudeness, or any breach of politeness as the warmest admirer of
the primitive life of the Indian would be to living himself in a
dirty tent, and eating his food, half cooked, on a forked-stick
over a camp fire. For such people this little code of the "Laws
and By-Laws of American Society" is not written.

There are others who are equally fierce in their denunciations of
the ridiculous etiquette above mentioned, but who have not the
same natural excuse for being so. These are the rude, rough
natures, whom no amount of social rubbing, or intercourse with the
most refined would polish, though the professors of the art of
good breeding polished never so wisely. They act in their rules of
conduct on a principle wholly selfish, making their own ease and
comfort the first, if not indeed the sole aim, regardless entirely
of the amount of inconvenience or discomfort they may occasion to
others. They are obliged to cry down, for mere consistency's sake,
the system which condemns their own course of action, and which
gives certain laws for governing the conduct, and certain other
laws prohibiting many of the acts of rudeness which they find so
agreeable, but which others may reasonably object to as offensive.
Such persons, too, will of course freely express their opinion,
yet their denunciations will probably produce an exactly opposite
effect to the one they intend, their own conduct proving the
pernicious influence of their theory. Their abuse will be, not the
expression, half in badinage, of minds protesting by anticipation
against the abuse of forms and ceremonies; but the ignorant
invective of coarse-minded people against a principle that would
tame them, and mould them into a more agreeable presence. They
exclaim loudly against what they personally dislike, however
beneficial it may be either to themselves or others. For them this
little book of the "Laws and By-Laws of American Society" is not

Besides the two classes already mentioned, there is another
exceedingly large class of society, which, far from being boorish
by nature, yet from circumstances lacks the cultivation which
alone will bring the conduct into such training as will fit it
practically for exhibition in society. To the persons comprising
this class, it is not only a source of regret, but of absolute
pain, to be ignorant of the rules which make society cohere, which
mark out the functions and duties of the various members which
comprise it, and which guard alike against annoyances from the
impertinent, and intrusions by the ill-bred, promoting by
organized methods the formation of desirable acquaintanceship and
pleasant friendships, which otherwise might never take place.
Isolation from society, the want of proper instruction, the ill
effect of bad example, the advice of the prejudiced, the
association with the low-bred, and a hundred other causes, may
conspire to prevent that intimacy with the cardinal rules of good
behavior, which decorum and good breeding have dictated for the
better guidance of the community. It is for such persons, and for
the many others who, though not unacquainted with the principles
which should guide them in their conduct, are yet often at fault
upon questions of detail, and sometimes commit errors, which are
the more excusable that absolute rules, deduced from precedent and
established by practice alone could set them right, that this code
of Modern Etiquette has been prepared. To them it is offered as
supplying a need which it is their misfortune, rather than their
fault, to experience, in the hope that it will be found to contain
a complete guide for them in the open paths and by-paths too of
good society.

Before beginning to lay down the rules and ordinances of
Etiquette, it will be well to say a few words upon Etiquette

Etiquette is, in point of fact, nothing more nor less than the
law, written and unwritten, which regulates the society of
civilized people, distinguishing them from the communities of
barbarous tribes, whose lives are hard and their manners still
harder. It is to a well disciplined and refined mind the
fundamental principle of action in all intercourse with society,
and they are interested in maintaining it in its integrity, and
bound to heed and obey its simplest as well as more formal
precepts. The real law-giver is the general convenience, speaking
with authority and the experience of many years; and it will be
found that even in those cases, where the meaning of its rules may
be somewhat obscure at first sight, there is an underlying reason
for the regulation laid down.

Etiquette, like every other human institution, is of course liable
to abuse; it may be transformed from a convenient and wholesome
means of producing universal comfort into an inconvenient and
burdensome restraint upon freedom and ease. It may become the
first consideration, instead of more properly the second, as is
often the case with the instrumental accompaniment to a song, and
then it becomes, as does the accompaniment, an intolerable
nuisance. The mere form, over-riding and hiding the spirit which
should control and guide it; an entirely artificial state of
things, taking the place of the natural, must inevitably produce
discomfort and extravagance of behavior. Nature is thus made the
slave of Art, instead of Art taking its proper place as the
handmaid to Nature.

Etiquette, to be perfect, therefore, must be like a perfectly
fitting garment, which, beautifying and adorning the person, must
yet never cramp or restrain perfect freedom of movement. Any
visible restraint will mar its grace, as a wrinkle will mar the
pure outline of the garment.

Most people have heard of the gentleman (?) who was perfect in his
knowledge of the laws of etiquette, and who, seeing a man
drowning, took off his coat and was about to plunge into the water
to rescue him, when he suddenly remembered that he had never been
introduced to the struggling victim, and resuming his coat,
tranquilly proceeded upon his way.

Not less absurd are a thousand instances where a regard for formal
mannerism takes the place of the easy grace that is the mark of
true politeness, which being well acquired and habitual, is never
obtrusive or offensively prominent. Too rigid an observance of the
laws of etiquette makes them an absurdity and a nuisance.

But, because the laws of etiquette may be made a restraint under
injudicious management, it does not follow that they should be
disregarded or in any way set aside. The abuse of them is no
argument against them, any more than gluttony is any reason for
starvation. It is not the food that is in fault, but the excess of
the person partaking of it. The fault must be laid wholly and
solely at the door of those who misunderstand the use and
intention of really sound and excellent precepts. The extravagance
of an overdisplay of etiquette is really only another form of
innate vulgarity, although there are instances which may be drawn
from the side of over refinement, from the history of people and
societies, who become extravagant in their devotion to what they
deem good breeding, simply because, like the stars that looked
down upon Molly Bawn, "they'd nothing else to do."

There are to be found, even in grave history--amid the records of
war, treaties, conquests, administrations and revolutions--
accounts given in equally grave language of deep questions of
etiquette which seem to have been debated and settled with as much
care and energy as the most serious questions of state affairs.
Cases of this sort are announced and well founded. Whoever likes
to see the extent to which attention was given to the subject can
seek instances in the memoirs of public characters who lived in
the seventeenth century, in the diaries of minute detailers like
the Duke de St. Simon, Page to His Most Christian Majesty, Louis
the Fourteenth; like Sir John Finett, Master of Ceremonies to
Charles the First, and in the domestic histories of the courtiers
and grandees of the Spanish and Venetian courts.

Fortunately, the time has gone by when nice questions about
trifling points of etiquette served to light the flame of civil
war, as once they did in France, and to set the whole of the upper
class in a kingdom in arms. We owe this, perhaps, as much to the
general increase of civilization as to the working of any
particular set of rules or system. But the principle which
actuated the French nobility, at the time alluded to, is an
inherent one in the human mind, and would be likely to repeat
itself in some shape or another, not so violently perhaps, but
still to repeat itself, were it not kept in check by the known
laws of society.

Mr. Buckle tells us that as late as the reign of Louis the
Fourteenth, the right to sit in the presence of the French king
"was considered to be a matter of such gravity that in comparison
with it a mere struggle for liberty faded into insignificance."
There was a perpetual striving which should be accounted greatest.
According to the old code of etiquette, a duke's wife might sit in
the French queen's presence, but no one under that rank could do
so. A combination of marquises, counts, and other nobles was
formed and wrung from the hand of Louis the Fourteenth, this
concession that the ladies of the house of Bouillon might sit in
the presence of the queen. But this was fuel to the fire of the
combined noblemen's anger; two hostile parties were formed, and
the question of etiquette was nearly being decided by the sword.
It required all the tact and statesmanship of Mazarin to prevent
this, and in the end the right was conceded to three of the most
distinguished ladies of the lower aristocracy, to sit down in the
presence of the queen. Upon this, the superior nobility summoned
their adherents to Paris, and really a severe struggle followed,
which ended in the last mentioned concession being revoked; and so
great was the importance attached to the revocation that nothing
would satisfy the nobles short of the public withdrawal being
drawn up in a state paper, signed by the queen's regent,
countersigned by the four secretaries of state, and conveyed to
the assembly of nobles by four marshals of France.

The French memoirs of this period (the seventeenth century) abound
with references to just such questions of court etiquette; who
might use an arm-chair at court; who was to be invited to the
royal dinner; who might be kissed by the queen; what degree of
nobility entitled a man to be driven to the Louvre in a coach;
whether all dukes were equal, or whether, as some thought, the
Duke de Bouillon, having once possessed the sovereignty of Sedan,
was superior to the Duke de la Rochefoucauld, who had never
possessed any sovereignty at all; who should give the king his
napkin at dinner, and who might have the honor of assisting at the
toilet of the queen. The question whether the Duke de Beaufort
ought or ought not to enter the council chamber before the Duke de
Nemours, and whether, being there, he ought or ought not to sit
above him, caused a violent quarrel between the two dukes in 1652,
a quarrel which, of course, ended in a duel, and the death of the
Duke de Nemours. The equally grave question, whether a duke should
sign before a marshal was violently disputed between the Duke de
Rohan and one of the marshals of Henry the Fourth, and the king
was obliged to interfere in the matter.

These, of course, are but so many instances of the principle of
etiquette carried to an extravagant length, and simply prove the
danger there is in allowing things of less importance to supersede
or take the precedence of those of greater weight. They serve to
explain, and in some measure to excuse the denunciatory
expressions which many thoroughly well-bred people use against
etiquette, such expressions being, as before suggested, merely
protests uttered in anticipation of a repetition of the absurdity
which over-attention to ceremonies is liable to introduce.

But such cases are really no argument against etiquette itself,
without deference to which it would be impossible to live in
anything like freedom from annoyance from persons naturally
impertinent, or in the full enjoyment of that social liberty which
every one has a right to expect.

Good breeding is, as Lord Chesterfield well says, "the result of
much good sense, some good nature, and a little self-denial for
the sake of others, and with a view to obtain the same indulgence
from them." Lord Bacon, in his admirable essay on Ceremonies,

"Not to use ceremonies at all, is to teach others not to use them
again, and so diminisheth respect to himself; especially they be
not to be omitted to strangers and formal natures; but the
dwelling upon them, and exalting them above the moon is not only
tedious, but doth diminish the faith and credit of him that

To quote again from Lord Chesterfield, who says:

"Good sense and good nature suggest civility in general; but in
good breeding there are a thousand little delicacies which are
established only by custom."

It is precisely these "little delicacies" which constitute the
difference between politeness and etiquette. Politeness is that
inborn regard for others which may dwell in the heart of the most
ignorant boor, but etiquette is a code of outward laws which must
be learned by the resident in good society, either from
observation or the instruction of others.

It is a poor argument used against etiquette that it is not
truthful, and that uncouth manners are more frank and sincere than
polished and refined ones. Is truth then a hedgehog, always 3
bristling and offensive. Cannot truth be spoken in courteous
accents from a kind, gentle impulse, as well as blurted out rudely
and giving pain and mortification? It is true that roughness and
sincerity often abide together, but would it destroy the honesty
to polish away the roughness?

Etiquette, it is sometimes urged, is used to cloak what is hollow,
unmeaning and false, yet may it not also drape gracefully what is
true, sincere and important?

True politeness must come from the heart, from an unselfish desire
to please others and contribute to their happiness; when upon this
natural impulse is placed the polish of a complete and thorough
knowledge of the laws of etiquette, the manners must be perfect
and graceful.

Etiquette added to natural politeness is as a beautiful jewel upon
a tasteful dress. Ruskin thus defines a gentleman:

"A gentleman's first character is that firmness of structure in
the body which renders it capable of the most delicate sensation,
_and of that structure in the mind which renders it capable of the
most delicate sympathies_--one may say simply fineness of nature.
This is, of course, compatible with heroic bodily strength and
mental firmness; in fact, heroic strength is not conceivable
without such delicacy. Elephantine strength may drive its way
through a forest, and feel no touch of the boughs, but the white
skin of Homer's Atrides would have felt a bent rose leaf, yet
subdue its feelings in glow of battle, and behave itself like
iron. I do not mean to call an elephant a vulgar animal; but if
you think about him carefully, you will find that his non-
vulgarity consists in such gentleness as is possible to
elephantine nature; not in his insensitive hide, nor in his clumsy
foot, but in the way he will lift his foot if a child lies in his
way; and in his sensitive trunk, and still more sensitive mind,
and capability of pique on points of honor....

"Hence it will follow, that one of the probable signs of high
breeding in men generally will be their kindness and mercifulness;
these always indicating more or less firmness of make in the

Undoubtedly the first law of good breeding is unselfishness, that
thorough forgetfulness of one's own wants and comforts, and
thoughtfulness for the happiness and ease of others, which is the
Christian gentleman's rule of life; which makes him yield the easy
chair to another older and weaker than himself, and sit upon a
narrow bench, or perhaps stand up; which selects for another the
choicest portions of the dishes upon the table, and uncomplainingly
dines off what is left; which hears with smiling interest the well-
worn anecdotes of the veteran story-teller; which gently lifts the
little child, who has fallen, and comforts the sobbing grief and
terror; which never forgets to endeavor to please others, and seems,
at least, pleased with all efforts made to entertain himself. Place
the code of politeness beside that of vulgarity and see if the one
does not contain all virtue, the other vice. Is not good temper
virtuous and polite, bad temper vicious and vulgar? Is not self
denial virtuous and polite, selfishness vicious and vulgar? Is not
truth virtuous and polite, scandal vicious and vulgar? Take every
principle in the conventional code of the perfectly well-bred, and
so define it, and not a virtue is rude.

True etiquette, as we have said before, is not politeness, yet it
is founded upon the same basis. An English author says:

"Etiquette may be defined as the minor morality of life. No
observances, however minute, that tend to spare the feelings of
others, can be classed under the head of trivialities; and
politeness, which is but another name for general amiability,
will oil the creaking wheels of life more effectually than any of
those unguents supplied by mere wealth or station."

To be truly polite, one must be at once good, just and generous,
has been well said by a modern French writer:

"True politeness is the outward visible sign of those inward
spiritual graces called modesty, unselfishness, generosity. The
manners of a gentleman are the index of his soul. His speech is
innocent, because his life is pure; his thoughts are direct,
because his actions are upright; his bearing is gentle, because
his blood, and his impulses, and his training are gentle also. A
true gentleman is entirely free from every kind of pretence. He
avoids homage, instead of exacting it. Mere ceremonies have no
attractions for him. He seeks not only to say civil things, but to
do them. His hospitality, though hearty and sincere, will be
strictly regulated by his means. His friends will he chosen for
their good qualities and good manners; his servants for their
thoughtfulness and honesty; his occupations for their usefulness,
or their gracefulness, or their elevating tendencies, whether
moral, or mental, or political. And so we come round again to our
first maxims, _i.e._, that 'good manners are the kindly fruit of a
refined nature.'

"And if this be true of mankind, how still more true is it of
womankind! Granted that truthfulness, gracefulness, considerateness,
unselfishness, are essential to the breeding of a true gentleman,
how infinitely essential must they be to the breeding of a true
lady! That her tact should be even readier, her sympathies even
tenderer, her instinct even finer than those of the man, seems only
fit and natural. In her politeness, prevcyance, and all the minor
observances of etiquette, are absolutely indispensable. She must be
even more upon her guard than a man in all those niceties of speech,
look and manner, which are the especial and indispensable
credentials of good breeding. Every little drawing-room ceremonial,
all the laws of society, the whole etiquette of hospitality must be
familiar to her. And even in these points, artificial though they
be, her best guide after all, is that kindness of heart which gives
honor where honor is due, and which is ever anxious to spare the
feelings and prejudices of others.

"Every mistress of a house, be it remembered, is a minor
sovereign, upon whose bounty the comfort, and happiness, and
refinement of her little court depends. She must take especial
care that her servants are capable, well trained and reliable, and
that her domestic arrangements are carried on as noiselessly and
easily as if by machinery. In a well ordered house the machinery
is always in order, and always works out of sight. No well-bred
woman talks of her servants, of her dinner arrangements, or the
affairs of her nursery. One feels these matters to be under her
_surveillance_, and that fact alone is a guarantee of their good
management. The amusements and comforts of her guests are provided
for without discussion or comment; and whatever goes wrong is
studiously withheld from the conversation of the drawing-room. And
let no lady, however young, however beautiful, however gifted, for
one moment imagine that the management of her house can be
neglected with impunity. If she is rich enough to provide an
efficient housekeeper, well and good; but, even so, the final
responsibility must still rest upon her, and her alone. No tastes,
no pleasures must stand in the way of this important duty; and
even if that duty should at first seem irksome, the fulfillment of
it is sure to bring its own reward.

"The very atmosphere of the house proclaims the mistress. The
servants wear a cheerful air, and meet you with candid and
friendly faces; the rooms are tastefully furnished; an
irreproachable cleanliness and neatness reign around. The
unexpected guest finds an orderly table and an unembarrassed
welcome. In such a house, scandal finds no favor, and conversation
never degenerates into gossip. In such a home, peace and plenty
and goodwill are permanent household gods."

The most perfect law of politeness, the safest and surest guide in
all that pertains to the true definition of a gentleman or lady
is, after all, the Christian rule:

"Do unto others as you would others should do unto you."

 No one with this for a guide can ever fail in true, genuine
_politeness_, and that politeness will soon lead him to learn and
remember all the prevailing rules of established _etiquette_.


NEVER introduce people to each other unless you are sure the
acquaintance so commenced will be mutually agreeable.

A person who, from youth, social position or any other cause,
stands in the inferior position of the two persons to be
introduced to each other, must be introduced to the superior. A
gentleman is always to be introduced to a lady, never a lady to a

At a ball, it is the part of the host and hostess to make
introductions amongst the guests; but guests may with perfect
propriety introduce friends to each other. Gentlemen must never
introduce friends to ladies, without first obtaining special
permission to do so, and this permission should be always granted,
unless there is a very strong reason for the refusal. The French,
and in a great measure the English, dispense with introductions at
a private ball. It is taken for granted that the hostess has
invited to her ball only such people as are fit to be mutually
acquainted, and the fact that they have been invited to meet each
other is a sufficient warrant for self-introduction. This practice
saves a great deal of trouble, but it applies only to balls in
private houses. At any public ball, partners must be introduced to
each other; indeed it is better for ladies at such entertainments,
to dance only with the gentlemen of their own party, or with whom
they had a previous acquaintance. Special introductions may,
however, be made with propriety by the master of ceremonies.

When introducing two gentlemen, look first to the elder, or, if
there is any difference in social standing, to the superior, and
with a slight bow say to him: "Allow me to introduce my friend,
Mr. Jones, to you;" then turning to your friend, repeat his name,
and follow it by that of the gentleman to whom he is introduced,
thus: "Mr. Smith, allow me to introduce my friend, Mr. Jones, to
you. Mr. Jones, Mr. Smith." In introducing a gentleman to a lady,
bow slightly to the latter, saying, "Miss---, allow me to
introduce Mr.---; Mr.---, (bowing to him) Miss---."

When several persons are introduced to one, it is sufficient to
name the single individual once, repeating all the names of the
others, thus: "Mr. Johnson, allow me to introduce Mr. and Mrs.
James, Miss Smithson, Mr. Lewis, Mr. Johnson," bowing slightly to
each when named.

Shaking hands after an introduction has taken place is merely
optional, not necessary; and is forbidden to an unmarried lady to
whom a gentleman is introduced. A bow is all that etiquette
requires. In introducing young persons to elder ones of good
social standing, it is often a kindly act of encouragement for the
latter to shake hands, with a few cordial words.

It is not necessary to introduce people who meet at your house on
morning calls, though it may be done with propriety if the
introduction has been previously ascertained to be mutually

It is optional after such an introduction, with the parties
introduced, to continue or drop the acquaintance so formed.
Without a formal introduction, the merely meeting at the house of
a mutual friend, does not warrant any future recognition. It
rests, however, after an introduction with the lady, if between
lady and gentleman, with the married or elder lady, if between
lady and lady, and with the elder, if between gentlemen, to
continue or drop the acquaintance.

Gentlemen who meet at the house or rooms of a mutual friend are
not obliged to recognize one another if they meet again elsewhere.
There is no rule forbidding their doing so, if agreeable to both
parties, but there is no requirement of etiquette obliging them to
appear as if they had even met before.

A lady is not obliged to afterwards recognize a partner with whom
she may have danced at a ball. It is entirely optional with her to
do so or not; and if she has danced several times with the
gentlemen, it will be a question between her and her conscience
how far she may consider herself justified in passing by without
notice one who has extended to her so much courtesy at a ball.
Etiquette, however, does not require even the slightest

When strangers in a city are introduced to residents it is
customary to name the place from which they come, thus: "Allow me
to introduce to you my friend Mr. Schmidt, from Germany. Mr.
Schmidt, Mr. Popking;" or if introducing a traveller, "Allow me to
introduce my friend Mr. Robinson, lately returned from Egypt." A
pleasant opening is thus offered for conversation, and a foreigner
may have the pleasure of a salutation in his own language.

An important duty in introducing friends is to pronounce the name
of each party clearly and distinctly, that no error or necessity
for repetition may occur.

It is often a positive kindness to take advantage of the etiquette
which dispenses with introductions at morning calls. Many a witty,
talented person has had a stupid bore pursue him upon such an
introduction, and even the one necessary conversation following an
introduction is a painful effort, owing to the entire
uncongeniality of the parties introduced.

A friend visiting at your house must be introduced to all callers,
who are bound to continue the acquaintance as long as the friend
is your guest. So, if when calling upon a friend, you are
introduced to a visitor, you are bound to extend all courtesies
and attentions which you would desire paid to your visitors in
similar circumstances.

Introductions, given at a party to a stranger visiting in a city,
must be followed by recognition as long as the visit continues.

If, when walking with one friend, you should meet another, it is
not necessary to introduce them; indeed, you should not do so
without special reason for it. Never, even after an introduction,
start a long conversation, unless all continue the walk in the
same direction.

Should you, when walking with a friend, meet a lady who desires to
speak to you, your friend must stop with you, yet an introduction
under such circumstances does not exact any future recognition.

Sisters, brothers or other relatives may always be introduced to
friends when met casually.

If friends meet at public places of amusement and are accompanied
by strangers, introductions are not required by etiquette, and if
made do not oblige any future acquaintance.

It is not necessary to have an introduction in order to pay your
respects to the President of the United States, excepting that of
the master of ceremonies at the receptions. He will receive your
card and present you. For a private interview it is better to be
introduced by a Senator or a member of the House of

In visiting foreign courts, introductions are more a matter of
ceremony than in this country. If you wish to obtain an
introduction to the Emperor of France, you must address your
request to the Grand Chamberlain, which may be done personally or
by letter.

Your statement that you are an American citizen, and a reference
to the American Consul will procure you an interview. Punctuality
to the hour appointed for the interview is essential, and ladies
present themselves in full dress; gentlemen in a dress suit of
black, white vest, gloves and neck-tie.

The ceremony of presentation will be explained before you are

In the English court, the ladies must be presented by a lady;
gentlemen by a gentleman. Strangers must have credentials from the
Consul before they can be introduced.

If at a dinner, a ball, or upon any occasion you are introduced,
at a friend's house, to one with whom you are not on good terms,
though it be your bitterest enemy, etiquette requires you to
salute him or her courteously, and make no sign of resentment
whilst under your friend's roof.

If you are introduced as a petitioner to any one in authority,
that introduction does not authorize you in claiming an
acquaintance afterwards.

Never introduce persons who may be related to you, without calling
their full name. It is done very often, even amongst well-bred
people, from thoughtfulness, as, "Mrs. James, allow me to
introduce my cousin Frank; Frank, Mrs. James," and poor Mrs. James
is left entirely ignorant of cousin Frank's name. The proper way
is to name the relationship and also the surname of the relative.
If you introduce a brother or sister even, marriage may have
changed the name of one. You should say: "Mrs. James, allow me to
introduce to you my sister, Miss Curtis; Miss Curtis, Mrs. James."

If you are introduced to the relative of a friend, etiquette
requires you to consider that relative an acquaintance, unless
there is some special reason to the contrary.

It is best to avoid introductions in a public conveyance, as few
people like to have their names called out in such places. If such
introductions are made, however, it should be done as quietly as

To introduce to a friend a person who is in any way objectionable,
is an insult which fully justifies a withdrawal of friendship.

A gentleman should always raise his hat, if introduced in the
street, to either lady or gentleman.

If introducing a foreigner or a gentleman in this country, whose
position gives him an honorary title, always give the title. Thus,
if a member of Congress, meeting a German baron at your house, you
introduce them, you say: "Mr. Somers, allow me to introduce to you
my friend, the Baron von Schmidt; Baron von Schmidt, the Honorable
Mr. Somers."


LETTERS of introduction should never be given, except to persons
well known to the person introducing them, and addressed to those
only who have a long-standing friendship for the writer. Amongst
persons but slightly acquainted, such letters are not only foolish
but positively dangerous, as you may thus give your countenance to
those who will take advantage of your carelessness to bring you
into mortifying, if not disgraceful positions.

Even amongst friends of long standing they should be given very
cautiously and sparingly, as it is a great responsibility to send
to your friend a visitor who may prove disagreeable, and you have
no right whatever to call upon comparative strangers to extend
hospitality or courtesy to your friends.

Letters of introduction should always be as short and concise as
possible. If you wish to send any information to your friends
about their visitor, send it in a separate letter by mail.

The utmost brevity is of importance in the letter of introduction,
as it is usually read in the presence of the party introduced, and
the pause must necessarily be awkward. You may in a letter of
introduction use a few words of warm, cordial feeling toward your
friend, but praise of any kind is in as bad taste as it would be
at a personal introduction.

This rule, however, does not apply to letters introducing
applicants for favor, office or position, which latter come more
strictly under the head of letters of recommendation than merely
letters of introduction.

Letters of introduction must be left unsealed invariably; they
should be folded and addressed like any other letter, but it is a
gross breach of etiquette to prevent the bearer from reading what
you may have said of him to your friend. It is optional with the
bearer to seal such letters before delivery, but it is customary
to leave them open.

A letter of introduction should not, unless circumstances make it
absolutely unavoidable, be delivered in person. It should be sent,
with the card of the person introduced, to the person to whom it
is addressed, by a servant. The person receiving it should then
call at once or send a written invitation to his house, and the
person introduced may then call in person. If, however, the stay
in the city is very short, these formalities must be omitted, and
the person introduced call in person, sending in his letter and
card by a servant.

Business letters of introduction should mention the errand and
business of the party introduced, and if your own acquaintance is
of recent date, mention by whom your were yourself introduced.

Letters introducing professional artists may contain a few words
expressive of the pleasure conferred by the talent or skill of the
person introduced.

Letters of introduction soliciting favors should be but seldom
given, and never unless the claims upon both parties interested
are very strong.

There is no rule of etiquette prescribing the exact amount of
attention required to be shown to the bearer of a letter of
introduction by the person to whom it is addressed.

A thousand circumstances of time, place, position, leisure and
disposition of the parties must control this, but as a rule, the
most generous hospitality and courtesy it is possible to give,
should be extended to your friend's friend. It is a compliment to
both the bearer and the writer of the letter. La Fontaine says: "A
letter of introduction is a draft at sight, and you must cash it."
It might be added, "You must cash it in full, never allowing the
courtesy exchange to be against the presenter of the draft."

Letters of introduction should bear upon the envelope the name and
address of the party introduced, written in the left hand corner--

No. 714 --- Street,
Introducing L. F. Townsend, Esq., of Troy.

Letters of introduction to and from business men, for business
purposes, may be delivered by the bearers in person, and etiquette
does not require the receiver to entertain the person introduced
as the private friend of the writer. Good nature and native
courtesy would suggest some attentions, which could be increased
according to the pleasure conferred or received, but it is
entirely optional.

Letters of introduction are very useful to travellers, or those
about to change their place of residence; care, however, should be
especially taken in the latter case to present persons to each
other only, who will prove mutually agreeable, as it is surely no
friendly act to force upon your friends a life-long acquaintance,
perhaps with uncongenial persons.

A form is given for an ordinary letter of introduction, to be
varied according to circumstances, always bearing in mind that
brevity is essential, long acquaintance necessary, and some claim
on both parties important, before giving any letters of introduction
to your friends and acquaintances.

"New York, August 12, 1869.


"Dear Sir:--Allow me to introduce to you my friend, Mr. Loving,
who will make a brief visit to your city. Any attention you may be
able to show him, during his stay, will be appreciated as a favor

"Yours sincerely,
"E. B. Lyons."

(To be directed) "JAMES WILCOX, ESQ.,
"No. 204 --- Street,
"Washington, D.C.
"Introducing F. G. Loving, Esq., of New York."

In receiving such a letter, bear in mind the courtesy extended is
really a compliment to the writer of the letter, and such
hospitality and courtesy as you extend you are entitled to claim
again for your own friends at some future time. If you are in a
position to do so, you should follow your first call by an
invitation to dinner, or to meet friends in the evening, and if
the new comer is a stranger in the city, select such friends to
meet him or her, as will prove agreeable and valuable
acquaintances. If your are a bachelor or boarding, and cannot
extend the hospitalities of a home, offer your services as guide
to points of interest in the city, places of public amusement, in
short, extend any courtesy your purse or leisure time will

It is contrary to etiquette for the bearer of a letter of
introduction to visit too frequently the house to which he has
just been introduced. The fact that Mr. Smith is your only friend
in town, and has been cordial in his invitations to "make his
house your home," does not justify you in pulling too frequently
at Mr. Smith's door-bell, or presenting yourself at unseasonable
hours in Mrs. Smith's drawing-room.

In travelling abroad it is impossible to have too many letters of
introduction. They take up but little room in a trunk, but their
value when you find yourself "a stranger in a strange land,"
cannot be over-estimated.


IN this country men do not embrace each other, nor do they
exchange kisses, while, unless amongst intimate friends, even the
fair sex now dispense with demonstrative salutations. In many
European countries kisses are exchanged, even between gentlemen,
and an embrace is quite in accordance with even a somewhat formal
salutation. In America, however, these demonstrations are mostly
confined to gushing misses and school-girls.

Men in this country acknowledge an introduction by extending the
right hand in greeting--the whole hand--for it is positively
insulting to offer two fingers, as some under-bred snobs will
sometimes do, and it is almost as bad to extend the left hand,
unless two persons are introduced at the same time, or the right
hand is useless or occupied; in any such case apologize for the
hand extended. The right hand is the sword hand, and its extension
to a friend is emblematic as a proof of peace, and as a safeguard
against treachery.

In offering the hand to a friend in the house, always remove the
glove, and grasp the hand given in return firmly for a moment. In
the street, however, the glove may be retained, if it would cause
an awkward pause to remove it; but always in such a case apologize
for the covered hand.

In shaking hands, do not try to wring them off the wrists, nor
press them as in a vise, nor pull them as though they were bell
handles, nor fling the two together with violence, so as to cause
a report. Let the palms grasp each other firmly, but without any
display of energy, and shake the hand moderately for a moment,
then release it. Mr. Pecksniff was wont to clasp his left hand
over his "dear friend's" right hand, resting in his own right.
This practice may be very effective, from a scenic point of view,
but it is not countenanced by any rule of etiquette.

A lady must first recognize a gentleman by bowing before he is at
liberty to salute her. She is the sole judge of the propriety of
recognizing him at all, and etiquette requires the strictest
deference to her desire in this respect. Should she recognize him,
he should raise his hat a little from his head, with the hand
furthest from her, and return her salutation with a slight
inclination of the body. He may not obtrude himself upon her
notice even if he thinks she has not observed him.

A lady should never stop in the street to salute a gentleman
friend, nor may a gentleman join a lady in the street.

Should a lady, however, stop in meeting a gentleman, etiquette
requires him to stop also, no matter how great his haste. If he is
really unable to stop any time, he must at least pause long enough
to state this fact, and apologize for leaving her in such haste.

When a lady wishes to end a conversation in the street, she should
bow slightly, and the gentleman must at once take his leave.

If a lady resumes her walk without any pause in the conversation,
a gentleman is then at liberty to join her in her promenade.

Married ladies are allowed more freedom in such matters than
unmarried ones. It is against all established laws of etiquette
for young unmarried ladies to do more than bow to gentlemen in the
street, unless the fact of relationship allows some violation of
strict etiquette.

Unless related, or upon terms of intimate friendship with a
gentleman, a lady should never salute excepting by a slightly
formal bow. A nod is vulgar, even when exchanged by intimate

In her own house, however, a lady should extend her hand in
salutation to every guest who crosses her threshold.

Froissart, that charmingly quaint writer, tells of the dame of
ancient days thus:

"When Sir Walter Manny and his men returned from a successful
sortie out of Henneboune, the chronicle tells us,' The Countess de
Montfort came down from the castle to meet them, and with a most
cheerful countenance kissed Sir Walter Manny and all his
companions, one after the other, like a noble and valiant dame.'"
Modern etiquette would hardly speak in praise of such a lady in
the current year.

On horseback a lady salutes by bowing slightly. A gentleman,
grasping reins and whip in his left hand, raises his hat slightly
with his right, at the same time inclining the body forward. He
may not, however, join a lady riding, unless she is escorted only
by a groom, and then he must first request permission to do so.

Never will a gentleman so far imitate a vulgar clown as to smack a
friend on the back, poke him in the ribs, or by clapping his hand
upon his shoulder. It is equally bad taste to use a familiar
shout, or "Hullo, old boy!" or any other "Hail fellow, well met"
phrase of salutation.

If a gentleman salutes another by mistake, even if he has given
him an unceremonious slap or poke, it is etiquette to treat the
offender with the utmost courtesy. He will probably be
sufficiently embarrassed, when he discovers his error, without
having any blunt speech made to add to his discomfiture.

If a gentleman meet a gentleman, be may salute him by touching his
hat without removing it, but if a lady be with either gentleman
both hats must be lifted in salutation.

If a gentleman stops to speak to a lady, in the street, he must
hold his hat in his hand during the interview, unless she requests
him to replace it. With a gentleman friend etiquette does not
require this formality.

A gentleman may bow to a lady seated at a window, if he is passing
on the street, but he must not bow from a window to a lady on the

A gentleman may never offer to shake hands with a lady, but he
must accept such an offer on her part, taking her hand lightly but
firmly in his ungloved right one, and delicately shaking it for a
moment. A pressure is an insult in such a case.

In entering a church a gentleman must remove his hat as soon as
his foot crosses the threshold of the sacred edifice. Travellers
will often omit this salutation in visiting churches abroad, whose
faith differs from their own. There is no more certain sign of ill
breeding as well as irreverence.

A gentleman may always bow to a lady he may meet on a airway, even
if not acquainted. If at the foot of the stairs, he must bow, pass
her and ascend before her. If at the head of the stairs, he must
bow, and wait for her to precede him in the descent.

If two friends are walking together and meet a friend of one, a
bow is all the salutation etiquette demands; if, however, one of
the two stops to speak to the third, he owes the friend he
accompanies an apology for the delay thus occasioned.

In entering a room, a gentleman must take his hat, cane and gloves
in his left hand, leaving his right hand free for salutation.

If a gentleman, walking with a friend, meets a lady with whom his
friend is acquainted, he must also bow, although the lady may be a
stranger to him. The bow must be very slight and formal, merely,
in fact, a compliment to his friend, and a mark of respect to the

A gentleman must always return a bow made to him in the street,
even if he fails to recognize the person who makes it. It may be a
person to whom he has been introduced, but whose face he has
forgotten, and if it is an error on the part of the other, a
courteous return of the salute will greatly diminish the
embarrassment of the mistaken party.

In meeting a party of friends with some of whom you are intimately
acquainted, and with some only slightly, endeavor to make your
salutations as equal as possible. A formal bow to one, and a
gushing demonstration of delight over another is a breach of
etiquette. Be courteous and cordial to all.

If a foreigner salute you after the fashion of his own country, do
not draw back or allow yourself to smile, but strive to put him at
his ease by taking no notice of the "national salute."

Kissing in public, even between intimate lady friends, is a vulgar
parade of affection, that a truly refined person will shrink from.

It is an insult to return a cordial grasp of the hand, and hearty
greeting, by a cold bow or a flabby extension of a portion of the
hand. Even if you do not approve of the familiar greeting you
should return it with some show of cordiality.

The Countess de --- speaking of salutations, says:

"It would seem that good manners were originally the mere
expression of submission from the weaker to the stronger. In a
rude state of society every salutation is to this day an act of
worship. Hence the commonest acts, phrases and signs of courtesy
with which we are now familiar, date from those earlier stages
when the strong hand ruled, and the inferior demonstrated his
allegiance by studied servility. Let us take for example the
words' Sir' and' Madam.'' Sir' is derived from Seigneur, Sieur',
Sire, and originally meant Lord, King, Ruler, and in its
patriarchal sense, Father. The title of Sire was last borne by
some of the ancient feudal families of France who, as Selden has
said, 'affected rather to be styled by the name of Sire than
Baron, as Le Sire de Montmorenci and the like.'

"Madam or Madame, corrupted by servants into 'Ma'am,' and by Mrs.
Gamp and her tribe into' Mum,' is in substance equivalent to' Your
exalted,' or' Your Highness.' _Ma Dame_ originally meaning high-
born or stately, and being applied only to ladies of the highest

"To turn to our every-day forms of salutation. We take off our
hats on visiting an acquaintance. We bow on being introduced to
strangers. We rise when visitors enter our drawing-room. We wave
our hand to our friends as he passes the window, or drives away
from our door. The Oriental, in like manner, leaves his shoes on
the threshold when he pays a visit. The natives of the Tonga
Islands kiss the soles of a chieftain's feet. The Siberian peasant
grovels in the dust before a Russian noble. Each of these acts has
a primary, a historical significance. The very word' salutation'
in the first place, derived as it is from' salutatio,' the daily
homage paid by a Roman client to his patron, suggests in itself a
history of manners.

"To bare the head was originally an act of submission to gods and
rulers. A bow is a modified protestation. A lady's courtesy is a
modified genuflexion. Rising and standing are acts of homage; and
when we wave our hand to the friend on the opposite side of the
street, we are unconsciously imitating the Romans who, as Selden
tells us, used to stand somewhat off before the images of their
gods, solemnly moving the right hand to the lips and casting it,
as if they had cast kisses.'

"Again, men remove the glove when they shake hands with a lady--a
custom evidently of feudal origin. The knight removed his iron
gauntlet, the pressure of which would have been all too harsh for
the palm of a fair _chatelaine_, and the custom which began in
necessity has travelled down to us as a point of etiquette."

General salutations of a mixed company are not now in vogue in the
best society, where etiquette requires that we recognize only our
own friends and acquaintances.

In meeting at a friend's house where you are visiting a circle who
are all entire strangers to you, remember that as mutual friends
of the host and hostess you are bound whilst under the same roof
to consider yourselves as acquaintances. No spirit of
exclusiveness is an apology for a neglect of this, and no shyness
can excuse a withdrawing into a corner, or clinging to one friend
alone in such a circle.


WHEN ladies have, according to the French custom, set apart one
morning or one evening in the week for receiving callers, it is a
breach of etiquette to call at any other time, unless a short
visit in the city or business that will not admit of delay are the
excuses. An hour in the evening, and from ten to twenty minutes in
the morning are the limits for a formal call.

When there is no time thus set apart, formal calls must be paid in
the morning, but with friends of long standing the evening call is
not only permissible, but often far more welcome.

Morning calls may be made by gentlemen in society upon all the
occasions following:

In answer to a letter of introduction sent to him, or to return
the call if the letter is personally presented.

In return for any hospitality offered to him when visiting another
city, if the entertainer visit his own place of abode.

In return for any favor received or courtesy extended to him by
another gentleman.

In return for an invitation to the house of a friend, whether the
invitation has been accepted or declined, and this call must be
made within the week following that during which the entertainment
was given.

On any occasion when a grief or a joy calls for expressions of
condolence or congratulation in the circle of his friends.

To greet the safe return of any friend who has been abroad, or
away from home for any length of time.

Following any occasion when a lady has accepted his services as an
escort, a gentleman must call to inquire after the health of his
fair charge, and must not delay longer than the day after that
upon which he has escorted the lady.

After a wedding, at the time appointed for the reception of

When visiting in another city, upon any friends there, or upon
those to whom letters of introduction have been given.

In asking or granting a favor, a call is demanded by etiquette.

The visit or call is a much better institution than the vulgar
suppose. It is not without its objections, consuming valuable
time, and giving occasion for gossip and small talk, but it is the
most agreeable and customary way of turning a mere acquaintance
into a friend. In a friendly call much of the restraint of meeting
in large assemblies is thrown aside, mind meets mind much more
easily in an easy _tete-a-tete_ conversation, and the conversation
may be allowed to partake somewhat more of a personal character
than it could in the ball-room or evening party.

First calls require prompt return, even if you drop the
acquaintance before the second one.

Morning calls must never be earlier than noon, evening ones never
later than nine o'clock.

When calling, if the room seems crowded, do not prolong your

A gentleman may never call with a friend upon a lady, unless the
friend is previously acquainted, or he has obtained permission of
the lady to introduce him.

In making a formal call, a gentleman must retain his hat in his
hand. An umbrella or cane may be left in the hall, never the hat
or gloves. If the call is made in the evening, the hat and gloves
must be held until the host or hostess gives an invitation to lay
them aside and spend the evening. Strict etiquette requires that
such an invitation shall not be given, or if given, not accepted
on the occasion of a first call.

In making an informal call in the evening, a gentleman may leave
hat, gloves, cane and overcoat in the hall.

No gentleman will prolong a call if he finds his host or hostess
dressed to go out. A brief visit with a promise to repeat it will
place his entertainers at ease, and even if they urge a longer
stay, the very fact that they were preparing to go out, proves
their desire to do so.

A card used in calling must never have anything upon it, but the
name and address of the caller. Nothing can show a greater
ignorance of the customs of society than to use a business card
for a friendly call. A physician may put the prefix Dr. or the
professional M.D., upon his card, and an Army or Navy officer his
rank and branch of service. Thus a civilian's card must be simply:

417 L--- Street.

A physician's:

218 T--- Street, or


An Army officer's:

U. S. A.

An Naval officer's:


In receiving a gentleman caller, a gentleman meets him at the
door, takes his hat and cane, and places a chair for him, but a
lady does not leave her seat to receive a gentleman, slightly
rising to bow, and resuming her place again when her visitor is
seated; in receiving another lady, a lady should rise and advance
to meet her, also rise and accompany her to the door when leaving,
unless she has other callers, in which case, she is not required
to leave her place, only standing to bid her caller farewell.

An English authority gives some excellent directions for calling
upon occasions of congratulation or condolence. He says:

"Visits of condolence and congratulation must be made about a week
after the event. If you are intimate with the person upon whom you
call, you may ask, in the first case, for admission; if not, it is
better to leave only a card, and make your "kind inquiries" of the
servant, who is generally primed in what manner to answer them. In
visits of congratulation you should always go in, and be hearty in
your congratulations. Visits of condolence are terrible
inflictions to both receiver and giver, but they may be made less
so by avoiding, as much as is consistent with sympathy, any
allusion to the past. The receiver does well to abstain from
tears. A lady of my acquaintance, who had lost her husband, was
receiving such a visit in her best crape. She wept profusely for
sometime upon the best broad-hemmed cambric handkerchiefs, and
then turning to her visitor said: 'I am sure that you will be glad
to hear that Mr. B. has left me most comfortably provided for.'
_Hinc illae lachrymae._ Perhaps they would have been more sincere
if he had left her without a penny. At the same time, if you have
not sympathy and heart enough to pump up a little condolence, you
will do better to avoid it, but take care that your conversation
is not too gay. Whatever you may feel you must respect the sorrows
of others."

On marriage, cards are sent round to such people as you wish to
keep among your acquaintances, and it is then their part to call
first on the young couple, when within distance.

A lady when calling keeps her parasol in her hand, and is not
required to remove her glove.

No dog, however "dear or interesting," can be admitted to the
drawing-room, and it is bad taste to have one follow you from
home, if you intend to make calls.

It is better for a lady not to have a child with her when paying
calls, unless it is trained to sit silent, or old enough to behave
with quiet propriety.

It is a sign of low-breeding to fidget with the hat, cane or
parasol during a call. They are introduced merely as signs that
the caller is in walking dress, and are not intended, the hat to
be whirled round the top of the cane, the cane to be employed in
tracing out the pattern of the carpet, or the parasol to be tapped
on the teeth, or worse still, sucked.

It is in bad taste for a caller to preface his or her departure by
consulting a watch, remarking, "Now I must go," or insinuating
that the hostess is weary of the visitor. Rise when ready to go,
and express your pleasure at finding your friends at home,
followed by a cordially expressed desire for a speedy meeting

Pelham said he always withdrew when he said something that
produced a sensation, because he knew he must leave such an
impression as would make people wish to see him again.
The lady of the house should always ring when visitors rise to go,
that a servant may be ready to show them out.

When other callers arrive, it is in bad taste to rise at once as
if driven away. Let the first caller watch for a favorable
opportunity to retire gracefully.

If a gentleman calling sees a lady unescorted rise to go, he may
with perfect propriety offer to escort her to her carriage, even
if a stranger, but he must return again to make his own farewell
bow to the hostess.

The most trivial subjects are admissible for a call, and it is not
in good taste to discuss deep interests, political questions or
matters of grave moment.

If strangers are in the room when a caller rises to leave,
courtesy requires only a slight bow in passing.

When calling, etiquette requires that a card be sent up. It will
show that you have called, and if friends are at home, will
prevent any confusion from mispronunciation of your name by the

When the lady of the house is not at home, a card must be left,
and if there are two or more ladies, the turning down of one
corner of the card signifies that the call was intended for all
the family,

If cards to be left preparatory to leaving town, the initials p.
p. c. (_pour prendre conge_,* or, presents parting compliments),
must be written in the left hand corner. If the departure is a
hurried one, the card may be sent by a servant, but it is in
better taste to leave it in person.

* To take leave.

Cards sent during the illness of any member of the family to whom
they are sent, must be accompanied by verbal inquiries regarding
the patient's health. The same rule applies to the survivors when
cards of condolence are sent.

Cards may be left or sent the day after a ball or large evening

After a dinner party or small social gathering, cards must be left
within the following week. When unable to accept an invitation to
dinner, a call should soon afterwards be made to express regret at
the inability to be present.

Visits of condolence are made within a week after the bereavement,
unless the deceased be one of the immediate family, when a
fortnight may be allowed to intervene. Cards may, however, be left
immediately after the death is known.

The first call of a stranger must be returned within a week.

Married men are not obliged to make calls of ceremony in person.
It is sufficient for their wives to leave their cards with their

Residents in a place make the first call upon any new comers.

If a lady does not wish to receive visitors, her servant must be
instructed to reply "not at home," to callers. This is not meant
to imply that she is out of the house; merely that she is not home
to callers. To say that she is "engaged" answers the same purpose,
but such answers must be made upon the first inquiry, for if the
visitor is announced, he or she may conclude the refusal is
intended for that especial call.

It is not necessary, nor is it customary in the city, to offer
refreshments to callers. In the country, especially if the
visitors have come from a distance, it is not only courteous, but
often a positive kindness to do so.

If a stranger come to stay at the house of a friend, those who are
in the habit of visiting at the house should call as soon as
possible, and such calls should be returned at the earliest
practicable opportunity.

A well-bred person should endeavor to be always prepared for
callers. If it is impossible, during the day, to see your friends,
instruct your servant to deny them at the door, but if once within
house, no personal inconvenience should prevent you from
presenting yourself. Illness alone, either your own, or that of
some one requiring your constant attention, can then excuse you.

A lady should avoid keeping callers waiting. If they call before
the hours etiquette has appointed, it is better to see them in the
morning dress than to make them wait for a more elaborate toilet.
If there is any fault, it is their own for intruding at improper

Persons who do not keep a carriage should not make visits of
ceremony in wet weather. It is ill-bred to enter a drawing-room,
with a handsome carpet upon it, in muddy boots and spattered
garments, to stand a dripping umbrella beside you, or deposit
over-shoes in the hall.

Never resume your seat after having once left it to say adieu.
There is nothing more awkward than to take leave twice. A lady who
is receiving morning visits, may keep some trifling fancy-work in
her hand, if she desires; but drawing, music, writing or any other
absorbing occupation must at once be laid aside.

In receiving many callers at one time, a well-bred lady must
divide her attentions as equally as possible. A _tete-a-tete_
conversation is a gross breach of etiquette, and no one may
receive any especial notice excepting any elderly person.

If, during a call any _contretemps_ occur, shorten your visit.
Your hostess may preserve a smiling serenity while a voice in the
distance proclaims that, "Johnnie has fallen down the stairs," or
"Mary has set the nursery curtains on fire," but you may be
certain she will not resent your departure, even if you have not
been two minutes seated.

If you find yourself intruding upon an early dinner hour, do not
prolong your stay.

A call may be made upon a friend to whom some good fortune has
come, as promotion in service or other happy event, even if he has
not returned the last of your visits.

It is a breach of etiquette, during a call, to draw near to the
fire to warm your hands and feet, unless you are invited by the
mistress of the house to do so. If you are alone in the drawing-
room for a time, while your visit is announced, and then go to the
fire, leave your seat and advance to meet the mistress of the
house as she enters, and then take the seat she points out to you.

In visiting an invalid, never offer to go to the room, but wait
for a invitation to do so.

A gentleman who is a confirmed invalid, may receive the visits of
a lady friend, but under no other circumstances.

Calls made either in person or by card, during an illness of your
own, must be returned as soon as you are able to go abroad again.

It is a breach of etiquette to remove the gloves when making a
formal call.

It is a breach of etiquette to stare round a room when you are
making a call.

In paying visits of condolence, let your dress be subdued. It is
offensive to put on your gayest attire to call upon a friend in
affliction, and equally so to converse upon such subjects as
balls, opera or similar amusements. Let the mourner decide whether
to speak of the recent sorrow or not.

A lady who allows remarks to be made upon a caller, who has just
left the room, commits not only a breach of etiquette, but a
positive rudeness and ill-natured act. It is quite easy to check
any such disposition by a grave reserve, and to turn the
conversation at once.

Calls in the country may be less ceremonious, and of longer
duration than those in the city.

It is an ostentation almost unkind for a lady to call upon a
friend in reduced circumstances, with any parade of her own wealth
in equipage or dress.

No mistress of the house may ever leave the room when there are
visitors in it.

It is a breach of etiquette for a caller, who is waiting the
entrance of the hostess, to open the piano, or to touch it if it
is open.

It is a breach of etiquette to walk round the room when waiting
for your hostess, examining the furniture or pictures.

It is a breach of etiquette for a caller to open or shut a door,
raise or lower a window curtain, or in any way alter the
arrangement of a room.

Many consider a clock on a drawing-room mantel a breach of
etiquette, as it seems to hint to visitors to keep early hours.

It is a breach of etiquette to turn your chair so as to bring your
back to any one seated near to you.

It is a breach of etiquette when making a call, to play with any
ornament in the room, finger the furniture or seem indeed to be
aware of anything but the company present.

To prolong a call to the next meal time is a positive rudeness, as
it forces your hostess to invite you to the table whether
convenient and agreeable or not.

In calling upon friends at a boardinghouse or a hotel, always
write their names above your own upon your card, that it may be
certain to be delivered to the right person.


THERE are several principal rules of etiquette which must be
rigidly observed in conversation, the non-observance of which will
at once stamp the guilty party as ignorant of the forms and
customs of polite society.

Ungrammatical expressions are unfortunately too common even
amongst those who have not the excuse of ignorance, but who fall
into the use of them merely from carelessness, or unconscious
imitation of others. "Says she to me," and other vulgarisms of a
like type, are also a gross violation of good taste in

The personal pronouns should be used as little as possible when
speaking of any one, either present or absent. The name of the
lady or gentleman to whom reference is made should be repeated if
necessary, but under no circumstances should the words "she" or
"he," accompanied by a nod or jerk of the thumb, in the direction
of the person spoken of, be employed. Never talk of any one with
whom you may have held intercourse as "that party," or "a party"
of your acquaintance.

Avoid as utterly hateful the use of slang terms. There are surely
words enough in the English language to express all the thoughts
and ideas of the mind, and it is a sign of pure vulgarity to
employ synonyms, the only remarkable part of which is that they
derive their existence solely from vulgar sources. In a gentleman
such expressions are too suggestive of low company, and
intercourse with the worst associates, and in a lady such
expressions are too offensive to be tolerated at all in good
society. Slang never ornamented conversation, but it invariably
sullies and degrades it. Equally to be censured as a violation of
etiquette, and more so in a moral point of view, is the use of
profanity; it is a sure mark, not only of low-breeding, but of a
narrow, degraded if not a positively vicious mind. Lamont says:

"Whatever fortune may be made by perjury, I believe there never
was a man who made a fortune by common swearing. It often appears
that men pay for swearing, but it seldom happens that  they are
paid for it. It is not easy to perceive what honor or credit is
connected with it. Does any man receive promotion because he is a
notable blusterer? Or is any man advanced to dignity because he is
expert at profane swearing? Never. Low must be the character which
such impertinence will exalt: high must be the character which
such impertinence will not degrade. Inexcusable, therefore, must
be the practice which has neither reason nor passion to support
it. The drunkard has his cups; the satirist his revenge; the
ambitious man his preferments; the miser his gold; but the common
swearer has nothing; he is a fool at large, sells his soul for
naught, and drudges in the service of the devil gratis. Swearing
is void of all plea, it is not the native offspring of the soul,
nor interwoven with the texture of the body, nor any how allied to
our frame. For, as Tillotson expresses it,'Though some men pour
out oaths as if they were natural, yet no man was ever born of a
swearing constitution.' But it is a custom, a low and paltry
custom, picked up by low and paltry spirits who have no sense of
honor, no regard to decency, but are forced to substitute some
rhapsody of nonsense to supply the vacancy of good sense. Hence
the silliness of the practice can only be equalled by the
silliness of those who adopt it."

It is exceedingly rude, nothing in fact can be more so, to talk to
any one person in the presence of others, in a language not
understood save by the two persons using it--unless you are
addressing a foreigner in his own tongue, and then others should
be made aware of the subject discussed. Nothing can be in worse
taste than to speak in an unknown tongue, to laugh and joke in a
language which leaves the rest of the company in ignorance whether
they themselves may not be the subjects of your remarks or mirth.

Never hold your companion, in a conversation, by the buttonhole.
If you are obliged to detain him forcibly in order to say what you
wish, you are pressing upon him what is disagreeable or unwelcome,
and you commit a gross breach of etiquette in so doing.

To speak to one person in a company in ambiguous terms, understood
by him alone, as "G---, I saw Mr. H., to-day, and delivered your
message," is as rude as if you went up to G--- and whispered in
his ear.

Do not interlard your conversation with scraps of foreign
language. It is an affectation of knowledge in one direction, and
a sort of tacit admission of ignorance in another; for it would
seem to show that the speaker was not well enough acquainted with
his own language to be able to express by its aid that which could
really be told as well, perhaps better, by it than any other.
There are certain expressions, chiefly French, which have become
domesticated in the English language, and which may occasionally
be employed, but only when they come in very aptly; the constant
or extended use of them is intolerable in good society.

Quotations are to be avoided as much as possible. When made, they
should be exceedingly short. There can scarcely be a greater
annoyance to a company than for one person to take up all the time
and attention by reciting a poem, a speech, a passage from a book,
especially if it be the speaker's own book, speech or poem. Of
course, if the company meet especially for mutual enjoyment in
elocution or recitation, this rule does not apply. It is
applicable only for general society. Short, pungent, epigrammatic
quotations, if suitable to the subject of conversation, may be
occasionally introduced, but their use should be the exception,
not the rule.

Dr. Johnson says that in order to converse well, "there must, in
the first place, be knowledge--there must be materials; in the
second place, there must be a command of words; in the third
place, there must be imagination to place things in such views as
they are not commonly seen in; and in the fourth place, there must
be a presence of mind, and a resolution that is not to be overcome
by failure--this last is an essential requisite; for want of it
many people do not excel in conversation."

 To be known as an inveterate teller of stories, is a great injury
to a man in society. A short, brilliant anecdote, that is
especially applicable to the conversation, known to be new and
never printed, is all that a well-bred man will ever permit
himself to inflict.

Remarks having, and intended to have, a double meaning--even puns
--are utterly to be deprecated. It is a great liberty to appeal to
the private sympathies of any one, by which I mean, to those
qualities or perceptions which are, as it were, a man's private
property, available for the use of his intimate friends, but not
for the general public. It seems almost needless to say that under
no circumstances whatever are any coarse allusions permissible.

Trite remarks are simply drags upon conversation, and may produce
awkward effects. It is told of Charles Lamb, that he was one day
at dinner at a friend's house, where amongst a number of literary
men was a solitary individual who had been invited for no apparent
reason. The poor man thought that, being in such company, it
behoved him to talk of some one or something literary. In an evil
moment he said, without being conscious of the triteness of his
remark: "Do you not think, sir, that Milton was a great genius?"
Charles Lamb gazed at him curiously, rose, went to the sideboard
and lighted a candle, with which he advanced, in solemn wise, to
where the trite talker sat, and said as one who is about to look
at some unusual object of interest-holding his candle near the
poor man's head the while: "Will you allow me to examine this
gentleman's pericranium?" Lamb was undoubtedly rude, but the other
gave him enormous provocation.

Political and religious topics are not in good taste in general
conversation. It is almost impossible to avoid strong personal
feeling when a difference of opinion arises, and such discussions
almost invariably lead to more warmth of expression and violence
of argument than are compatible with the requirements of polite

To listen with interest and attention is as important in polite
society as to converse well, and it is in the character of
listener that the elegant refinement of a man accustomed to
society will soonest prove itself. No matters how "flat, stale and
unprofitable," the remarks of another may be, the well-bred man
will listen with an appearance at least of interest, replying in
such a manner as to show that he entirely "follows the thread of
the discourse."

Avoid as much as possible all egotism; in conversation stick
closely to Cardinal Wolsey's direction to "love thyself last." It
is, to say the least of it, unseemly for a man to be constantly
making himself the subject of conversation. At times it lays a man
open to the attacks which his style certainly invites--as was the
case with the egotist who dared to talk much of himself in the
presence of Dr. Johnson, whom he had greatly irritated by his
conceited talk. The Doctor availed himself of an opportunity to
crush him.

"Oh, indeed, I did not know that!" exclaimed the man, upon some
intelligent remark made by one of the company, whereupon the
Doctor broke in with: "Sir, what you do not know would fill a very
large library."

There used to be a joke against Lord, Erskine, who was notably a
talker of himself, that the printer, having to print a speech
which his lordship had delivered, sent word to say that "he was
very sorry, but he had no more 'I's' in his founts than would
suffice to set up half the speech."

The subject of conversation and the method of handling it should
be so ordered as not to offend either directly or indirectly.

Suitable subjects, for time and place, form an important
consideration in polite conversation. Grave tones and important
consideration are not suited for the chit-chat of a brief call or
a social evening, nor is small talk an appropriate introduction,
when the meetings are for the purpose of discussing serious
matters. Let gayety or gravity rule as place and occasion demand.

Gesticulations are in excessively bad taste. If you do not wish to
attract censorious remark, converse quietly and without gesture.
Declamation is not conversation.

Refrain from the use of satire, even if you are master of the art.
It is permissible only as a guard against impertinence, or for the
purpose of checking personalities, or troublesome intrusions.
Under no circumstances whatever should it be used merely for
amusement's sake, to produce an effect, or in order to show off
one's own wit. It must never be employed by a gentleman against a
lady, though ladies are prone to indulge in the use of this wordy
weapon. Their acknowledged position should, in the eyes of a true
gentleman, shield them from all shafts of satire. If they, on the
other hand, choose to indulge in satire, it is the part of a
gentleman to remonstrate gently, and if the invective be
continued, to withdraw. There was a case in point during the
Austro-Prussian war. The Grand Duchess of ---, being visited by a
Prussian General on business, took occasion to pour forth upon him
the unmeasured violence of her temper, which had naturally enough
been disturbed by the success that had attended the Prussian arms,
and had been at the same time so injurious to her husband's
interests. The Prussian General remonstrated, at first mildly; the
invective still flowed, when the General said he would not have
believed that a Prussian officer could have been called upon to
endure such abuse from the lips of a high-born lady. Still the
Grand Duchess continuing to ignore the object of the General's
visit, and continuing also to pour forth the bitterness of her
spirit upon him, the soldier withdrew, not returning railing for
railing, but simply declaring that the language used towards him
was absolutely intolerable.

Do not attempt to speak with the mouth full.

Do not, however much you may be pleased with any remark, cry out
"Bravo!" clap your hands, or permit any gesture, silent or
otherwise, to mark your appreciation of it. A quiet expression of
pleasure, or the smiling lip will show quite as plainly your sense
of the wit, or fitness of the remark.

If you are flattered, repel it by quiet gravity. You cannot accept
it without also accepting the contempt of the person who offers
it. Refrain, too, from expressions of flattery to others; you will
surely offend any hearer who has delicacy of feeling and

If an error in language, either in pronunciation or grammar,
escapes those with whom you are conversing, never show that you
notice it. To take occasion to repeat correctly the same word or
phrase, is ill-bred in the extreme, and as much so to correct it
when spoken.

In addressing any one and in general conversation, it will be well
to bear in mind the advice of Polonius to his son Laertes: "Be
thou familiar, but by no means vulgar;" but unless you have
special reason, do not too closely adhere to his precept, "Give
every man thine ear, but not thy tongue." This will only serve to
make you appear reserved and reticent, when to be so would be not
only out of place, but ill-bred. In society, a man should make
himself as agreeable as he can, doing his best to assist
conversation, as well by talking gracefully and easily, as by
listening patiently, even though it be to a twice-told tale.

Do not whistle, loll about, scratch your head, or fidget with any
portion of your dress while speaking. 'Tis excessively awkward,
and indicative of low-breeding.

Strictly avoid anything approaching to absence of mind. There can
be nothing more offensive than a pre-occupied vacant expression,
an evident abstraction of self at the very time you are supposed
to be listening attentively to all that is being said to you. Lord
Chesterfield said: "When I see a man absent in mind. I choose to
be absent in body." And there was really much reason in the

Whispering is atrocious, and cannot be tolerated. It is almost as
bad to endeavor to draw one person from a general conversation
into a _tete-a-tete_ discussion. Private affairs must be delayed
for private interviews.

If, however, you find others have been guilty of this breach of
etiquette, and you are so placed as to overhear what is intended
to be a secret communication, you may with perfect propriety
change your seat, or if this is not practicable, inform the
persons so conversing, that their voices are audible to you.

Unless you are actually afflicted with deafness, never ask to have
a sentence repeated. It implies a wandering attention. If your
hearing is defective, say so, and your companion will raise his

Never interrupt a speaker. It is equally rude to supply words over
which your companion may hesitate a moment. Do not be guilty of a
rough comment on what has been said, by such remarks as, "Yes, you
mean so-and-so." If you understand such to be the meaning of a
remark, act or answer accordingly; if you are uncertain, try to
find out in some way that will not wound the feelings of the

In general conversation avoid argument. It is too engrossing of
attention, and is moreover apt to break in upon the harmony of the
company. If obliged to discuss a point, do so with suavity,
contradicting, if necessary, with extreme courtesy, and if you see
no prospect of agreement, finishing off with some happy good-
natured remark to prove that you are not hurt or offended.

When addressing a person, look in his or her face, not staringly,
but frankly, never fixing your eyes on the carpet or your boots.

Speak clearly and distinctly, never mumbling your words, and while
avoiding a shouting tone, speak loudly enough to ensure your
remarks being heard. A very low tone of voice will be heard if the
words are clearly articulated and spoken slowly enough for perfect
distinctness, and is much more agreeable than hurried, garbled
speech loudly uttered.

Do not sit too close to your companion in conversation, and avoid
any appearance of wishing secrecy.

Loud laughing and giggling are in excessively bad taste. Do not
interrupt yourself by laughing at what you are about to say.

Eschew scandal, for "in scandal as in robbery, the receiver is
always thought as bad as the thief." Mimicry is the lowest and
most ill-bred of all buffoonery.

Swearing, sneering, private affairs either of yourself or any
other, have long ago been banished out of the conversation of
well-mannered people.

Never suppose, or never appear to suppose yourself the subject of
the conversation or laugh of the company.

Bashfulness is an inconvenient quality, which a great authority
has stated to be "the distinguishing character of a booby."
Nicknames are abominable, and are never allowed in good society.
Call people and things by their right names, and avoid
affectations of all kinds.

If your friends become the subject of conversation, never compare
one with another, or mention the vices of one to add to the lustre
of virtue of the other. Find something pleasant to say of each,
that you may not earn the reputation of a backbiter.

In conversing with a foreigner, betray no impatience if he
hesitates for a word to express himself, nor any ridicule if his
language is faulty. If you speak his own tongue, say so when you
begin the conversation, as this is never a mere display of an
accomplishment, but a true kindness to "a stranger in a strange
land." You are almost certain to give pleasure by so doing.

To speak constantly of public characters or distinguished people
as your intimate friends, even if they are so, is a certain mark
of low-breeding. Boasting of your own position, wealth, luxuries
or possessions of any kind is in equally bad taste.

Never speak to a literary person of his works. You may by an apt
quotation or pleasant remark show that you are familiar with them,
but to question an author about his profession is ill bred. It is
equally so to speak of business matters to any man in general
society. Business men do not go into the world of polite society
to carry their shop, and they will not thank you for reminding
them of work in their hours of relaxation.

Do not commence any conversation by the suggestion of painful or
disagreeable topics. To ask a friend abruptly, "For whom are you
in mourning?" may be tearing open anew a wound that was covered
for the time by intercourse with society. Take other steps to
satisfy yourself on this point. By the same token, do not say to a
man, "That was an unfortunate affair, that failure of yours."
Never, directly or indirectly, rub a sore.

Do not ask questions which relate to the private affairs of the
person spoken to, and be guarded against conduct which may look
like an attempt to force confidence. If too persevering in your
inquiries you may be treated, and very properly, as one might
treat a highwayman who sought to rob one of any other property. A
man's thoughts are certainly his own most private possession, and
you must be very intimate to seek to be admitted to a share in
them. Even if you are so, it is far more delicate to wait until
confidence is offered to you. A man has a perfect right to defend
himself from cross-examination by any means, except positive

In conversing with foreigners do not disparage any of their
national customs, even if they are rude enough to attack yours.
You may, pleasantly and frankly, defend the institutions of your
native land, but not by comparison with the customs of other
countries. If your companion is well-bred, he will admit that you
possibly understand American customs better than a foreigner can
do; if he is a low-bred man, no rudeness on your part will correct
his manners or views.

Subjects or incidents calculated to disgust the hearers, are to be
avoided in polite conversation. There is a positive fascination to
some people in describing sickening or revolting scenes, but well-
bred people will remember that some are sensitive upon such
subjects, and all would prefer more agreeable topics.

Do not use surnames alone, even if speaking of intimate friends.
For a lady to speak of her husband as "Smith" or "Jones," is
vulgar in the extreme, and it is low-bred also to say "my
husband," "my wife" or, except amongst relatives, to use the
Christian name only, in speaking of husband or wife. Speak of your
own husband or wife as, "Mr." or "Mrs. B---," and of your friends
also by the surname prefix as, "Remember me to Mr. or Mrs. D."

Let no more than one person be speaking at one time.

Ridicule and personal joking cannot be too severely censured.

Avoid an officious offer of advice or your own opinion, and if you
do give an opinion, be sure it is given as such and not as a fact.

If you would preserve a character for truthfulness, avoid the too
common fault of exaggeration.

When visiting, be careful that you do not appear to undervalue
anything around you by comparing it with what you have at home.

Beware of personal abuse or invective. Remember what Shakespeare
put into the month of Cardinal Wolsey, when the Earl of Surrey
said to him on his disgrace:

"Now if you can blush and cry 'guilty' Cardinal,
You'll show a little honesty."

Mark the proud dignity of the prelate's reply:

"Speak on, sir;
I dare your worst objections: If I blush
It is to see a nobleman want manners."

Punning is a vulgarism that should be scrupulously avoided. An
inveterate punster, though his play upon words may rise to the
keenest wit, is yet an insufferable bore. No one feels secure in
his society, or can guess what word may be torn out of a serious
or brilliant remark to be tortured into a vulgar witticism, out of
place and uncalled for.

Proverbs are not in good taste when introduced into conversation.

Scriptural phrases are apt to subject the speaker to a suspicion
of insincerity, and should be used very seldom, and with the
utmost reverence.

Cant is simply detestable.

Religion is a subject too apt to lead to long arguments if not to
positive altercation to be the subject of general conversation.

Repartee is not a weapon for every-day use. There are few who can
wield this polished blade skillfully, and when clumsy hands grasp
it, it will wound both speaker and hearer.

The talented author of "Good Society," says:

"The great secret of talking well is to adapt your conversation as
skillfully as may be to your company. Some men make a point of
talking commonplace to all ladies alike, as if a woman could only
be a trifler. Others, on the contrary, seem to forget in what
respects the education of a lady differs from that of a gentleman,
and commit the opposite error of conversing on topics with which
ladies are seldom acquainted. A woman of sense has as much right
to be annoyed by the one, as a lady of ordinary education by the
other. You cannot pay a finer compliment to a woman of refinement
and _esprit_, than by leading the conversation into such a channel
as may mark your appreciation of her superior attainments.

"It should be remembered that people take more interest in their
own affairs than in anything else which you can name. In _tete-a-
tete_ conversations, therefore, lead a mother to talk of her
children, a young lady of her last ball, an author of his
forthcoming book, or an artist of his exhibition picture. Having
furnished the topic, you need only listen; and you are thought not
only agreeable, but thoroughly sensible, amiable and well-

"Be careful, on the other hand, not always to make a point of
talking to persons upon general matters relating to their
professions. To show an interest in their immediate concerns is
flattering, but to converse with them too much about their own art
or profession, looks as if you thought them ignorant of other

"Remember in conversation that a voice 'gentle and low' is, above
all other extraneous accomplishments, an excellent thing in woman.
There is a certain distinct but subdued tone of voice which is
peculiar to persons only of the best breeding. It is better to err
by the use of too low than too loud a tone. Loud laughter is
extremely objectionable in society.

"Conversation is a reflex of character. The pretentious, the
illiterate, the impatient, the curious, will as inevitably betray
their idiosyncrasies as the modest, the even tempered and the
generous. Strive as we may, we cannot always be acting. Let us,
therefore, cultivate a tone of mind, and a habit of life, the
betrayal of which need not put us to shame in the company of the
pure and wise, and the rest will be easy. If we make ourselves
worthy of refined and intelligent society, we shall not be
rejected from it; and in such society we shall acquire by example
all that we have failed to learn from precept."

If you are conversing, when interrupted by a visitor, and, after
the customary greetings, resume the conversation, you must
recapitulate the substance of it for the benefit of the new comer.

To invariably commence a conversation by remarks on the weather
shows a poverty of ideas that is truly pitiable.

Do not constantly repeat the name of a person with whom you are

A person who has travelled will probably be severely ridiculed if
constantly referring to "the winter I spent in Florence," or "when
I was in London."

If conversation takes a tone that is offensive to good taste,
charity or justice, be silent.

Do not be too ready to correct any statement you may deem untrue.
You may be yourself mistaken.


ALL invitations, excepting dinner invitations, are issued in the
name of the lady of the house alone. Dinner invitations are issued
in the name of the gentleman and lady of the house, or when
extended to gentlemen only, in the name of the host alone. Answers
to invitations, excepting such dinner invitations as are issued in
the name of the gentleman only, must be addressed to the lady of
the house.

When invitations are issued in the height of a fashionable season,
it is best to send them out at least a fortnight beforehand. For a
small company, and when gayety is not at its height, a week's
notice is sufficient. For a costume ball, private theatricals or
any occasion when elaborate dresses or preparations are needed, a
month should be given.

Printed cards of invitation are not _en regle_, excepting for
public occasions. A small note paper is the only appropriate one,
and may have the initial letter or monogram stamped upon it, and
the envelope. Any more fanciful decoration is in excessively bad

The proper form for a dinner invitation is:

"Mr. and Mrs. G--- request the favor of Mr. and Mrs. L---'s
company at dinner, on Tuesday, the 8th of January, at 5 o'clock."


"Mr. G--- requests the pleasure of Mr. L ---'s company at dinner,
on Tuesday, the 8th of January, at 5 o'clock."

The answer accepting the invitation should run as follows:

"Mr. and Mrs. L--- have much pleasure in accepting Mr. and Mrs. G-
--'s kind invitation to dinner on the 8th of January."

If declined, the following form must be used:

"Mr. and Mrs. L--- regret that a prior engagement (or other reason
stated) will prevent their accepting Mr. and Mrs. G---'s kind
invitation to dinner on the 8th of January."

Should the invitation be declined, some reason for the refusal
must be given, and, unless an excuse (which always savors more or
less of the untruthful) be wanted, it is the truest politeness to
assign the cause which actually is the preventive. Whatever the
cause--sickness, domestic trouble, business or any other--it
should be stated as concisely as possible in the answer, which in
any case should be dispatched as soon as possible (certainly the
next day) after the receipt of the invitation, that the hostess
may have time to summon other guests in the stead of those
declining her first invitations.

After an invitation is once accepted, it should be scrupulously
observed. Nothing but the most absolute necessity should prevent
you from going, and when such necessity arises, it should be
communicated directly, with a full explanation of the preventing
cause even if it is within half an hour of the appointed dinner
time. If earlier, send the explanation as soon as possible.

Invitations to dinner and the answers must be sent by a special
messenger. The post is proverbially uncertain, and the non-arrival
of an expected invitation or its answer, may cause lasting

It is a breach of etiquette, to say nothing of practical
inconvenience, to bring an unassorted company together at dinner.
Great people, public characters, literary celebrities or
distinguished guests from any cause should not be invited merely
because they are such. They will be uncomfortable if the guests
summoned to meet them are not congenial, and the remainder of your
company equally so. No one guest should be too conspicuous. A
harmonious blending of tastes and qualities should be the object
in view. Persons moving in one circle of society should not, as a
general rule, be invited to meet those who move in another circle.
A man of strong political bias in one direction, should not be
invited to meet a party opposed to his views; persons of known and
marked differences in religious matters should not be invited to
meet each other, and above all, avoid the social collision of
those whom you know to be personal enemies. The best guide in such
matters is common sense, coupled with a little judicious

Invitations to large balls should be sent out at least a fortnight
before the time appointed, and are worded thus:

"Mrs. L---'s compliments to Miss G---, and requests the pleasure
of her company at a ball, on Wednesday, the 7th of March, at 9

The answer is as follows:

"Miss G---'s compliments to Mrs. L---, and accepts with pleasure
her kind invitation for Wednesday, March 7th."


"Miss G--- regrets a recent death in her family will prevent her
accepting Mrs. L---'s kind invitation for March 7th."

An invitation to an evening party is worded:

"Mrs. S--- compliments to Mr. and Mrs. T---, and requests the
pleasure of their company on March 9th, at 8 o'clock."

Such an invitation calls for full evening dress. The answer is the
same as for a ball invitation.

Invitations to pic-nics, private theatricals, concerts, tea
parties and other entertainments, generally state the nature of
such entertainment, and are a little less formal than those
already given.

For a musical party:

"Mrs. R-- requests the pleasure of Mr. and Mrs. P---'s company, on
Thursday evening, Feb. 10th, at 8 o'clock, to meet the members of
the Harmonia Musical Society."

And if you have a programme of the concert, enclose it.


"Mrs. F--- expects a few friends on Monday evening next, at 8
o'clock, to take part in some dramatic readings, and would be
happy to have Miss B--- join the party."


"Mrs. S---'s compliments to Miss P---, and would be pleased to
have her join a pic-nic party to Pine Grove, on Wednesday, June
14th. Carriages start from Mrs. S---'s at 9 o'clock, and a place
will be reserved for Miss P---."

Notes of invitation must always be dated, and your address in full
written in one corner, thus:

"Feb. 6th, 18--.
"Miss M---. requests the pleasure of Miss N---'s company to a
small evening party, on Friday evening next, at 8 o'clock.
"No. 762 R--- Street."

The body of the invitation must be in the middle of the sheet, and
date a little above to the right, the address a little below to
the left.

The envelopes containing invitations must be directed always to
the private residence of the person invited, never to a place of
business or office.

When the officers of a regiment or a ship are invited to an
entertainment, and it is not possible to invite them all, it is
customary to send an invitation to the Colonel or Commander,
accompanied by a certain number of blank tickets, if it be a
public ball, or by an intimation that the host would be glad to
see Colonel or Captain --- and so many of the officers of the
regiment or ship.

Invitations by a regiment to a ball, to be given by the officers,
are worded as follows:

"Col. and the officers of the --- Regiment, U. S. A. (or other
branch of the service), request the pleasure of Mr. and Mrs. C---
's company on the 7th of December, at 9 o'clock.
"R--- Barracks, corner of --- and --- Streets."

Answers should be addressed to the Colonel of the regiment, and
worded thus:

"Mr. and Mrs. C's compliments to Colonel -- and the officers of
the - Regiment, U. S. A., and accept with pleasure their polite
invitation for the 7th of December."

In case an officer desires to invite his personal friends, he
encloses his own card in the invitation, but these must all be
issued in the form already given, the card explaining to which
officer the compliment is to be attributed.

Invitations to a Naval ball are issued in the name of the "Captain
and officers of the U. S. Ship ---," or simply in the name of "The
Officers of the U. S. Ship ---."

On the corner of the card the name of the officer to whom the
answers are to be sent, should be written.

An officer of higher rank, or a public official of high position,
will signify on his card what aide-de-camp or clerk is to receive
the answers to his invitations, and will issue them in the joint
name of himself and wife, thus:

"General and Mrs. E--- request the pleasure of Mr. and Mrs. D---'s
company, on Thursday, the 6th of November, at 8 o'clock.
"Direct answers to Capt. E. C---."

Verbal invitations are given only when the occasion is a very
informal one, and imply plain dress, early hours and a small

Invitations to concerts, theatre or opera, should be sent in time
to secure good seats, if accepted, The usual style is:

"Mr. G would be much pleased to have Mrs. and Miss Hunt's company
at the opera, on Wednesday evening, when La Trovatore will be
performed by the Italian troupe at the Academy of Music."

Such an invitation calls for an immediate answer from the elder
lady, and should be as follows:

"Mrs. and Miss Hunt accept with pleasure Mr. G---'s polite
invitation to listen to a favorite opera on Wednesday evening."

Or if declined:

"Mrs. Hunt regrets that a prior engagement will prevent her own
and Miss Hunt's acceptance of Mr. G---'s polite invitation for
Wednesday evening."

For a general reception, invitations are printed upon cards, thus:

"Wednesday Evening, January 14th, No. 348 --- STREET."

Such cards do not require any answer.


ON no occasion is a want of punctuality more ill-bred than at a
dinner party, whether it is the guests who are late, or the
hostess who allows dinner to be later than the time appointed.
Belie remarks, with as much truth as sarcasm:

"I have always been punctual to the hour of dinner, for I know
that those whom I kept waiting would employ those unpleasant
moments to sum up all my faults."

To arrive too early is to annoy the lady of the house by
disturbing her at her toilet.

To arrive too late is injurious to the dinner, to the temper of
your host, of the other guests and of the servants.

It is really a sad breach of etiquette to be later than the hour
named in your invitation for dinner, and from ten to fifteen
minutes before it is quite soon enough for your arrival.

As regards the hour for dinner, etiquette, strictly so called, has
not prescribed anything. Custom, the fashion, convenience, a score
of things may control it. From five to eight o'clock, according
somewhat to the season of the year, is the present fashionable
limit. By that time the business of most men is over for the day,
which can scarcely be said of an hour earlier than five.

The lady of the house should be in her drawing-room, ready to
receive her guests, ten or fifteen minutes before the hour fixed
for their arrival, and the daughters of the house should be with
her, and not drop in one by one after the guests' arrival. The
gentleman of the house should also be present, and in case it is a
strictly gentleman's party, at which no hostess presides, he must
be all ready before the appointed time to do the honors.

On guests being announced, the lady advances a few steps towards
them, and should receive them cordially with some words of

The hostess must never betray any chagrin at the lateness of a
guest, but try to place the unfortunate last arrival as much at
ease as possible by her cordial welcome and unembarrassed manner.

Before all the guests have arrived the lady should have made her
arrangements as to what gentleman and lady are to go in to dinner
together, and before dinner is announced the gentlemen of the
party should be informed what lady they are to escort to the

The gentleman of the house offers his arm to the lady most honored
amongst the guests, the gentleman most distinguished offers his
arm to the lady of the house.

Gentlemen give the left arm to a lady, excepting military officers
in full dress, who give the right arm, as the sword is
inconveniently worn for offering the left. In all other cases the
right arm must be left free.

The order of procession being settled, the company move according
to it from the drawing-room to the dining-room, as soon as dinner
is announced.

The host sits at the bottom of the table, the hostess at the top.
At the right of the host is placed the lady he escorted from the
drawing-room, and at the right of the hostess her escort. The next
place of honor is at the left of the hostess.

It is a good plan, and rapidly becoming an established custom, to
have small cards with the names of the guests written upon them,
laid upon the plate at each seat. Each one thus taking the place
assigned prevents confusion, and gives the hostess the privilege
of placing near to each other the guests who will prove mutually

Gentlemen should stand behind their respective chairs until all
the ladies are seated, and then take their own seats, being
careful that their chairs do not stand upon the dresses of the
ladies beside them.

Seats having been apportioned to all, grace is said, by a
clergyman if there is one present, if not, by the host. The
clergyman should be invited to say grace by the host.

If the dinner is _a la Russe_, there will not be any carving done
on the table itself.

If the party is small, mere _en famille_, the hostess will have a
dish before her, the contents of which will have to be carved. The
gentleman on her right hand should in that case offer to carve for
her, but if she declines, should not press the offer. Many ladies
are excellent carvers, and like to appear so.

There is no space in our little volume for directions upon
carving, nor do they form any portion of the art of etiquette. All
that etiquette has to say on the subject is that you must not
stand up to carve; you must not pursue the bird, joint or whatever
the meat may be, all round the dish; nor should you comment upon
the age of the fowl, the toughness of the meat or your own
awkwardness in carving. If you really do not understand it, do not
attempt it; say so and let the waiter cut it up.

Never be helped twice to soup or fish, and indeed it appears low
bred to be twice served to any one dish. You may refuse either
soup or fish, but make no comment if you do, as to your liking or
dislike for the dish, nor is it incumbent upon you to state that
"soup does not agree with you," or that "fish always make you
ill;" any such remarks are rude. Simply to say "no, thank you," in
refusing a dish, is all the reply that strict etiquette will allow
upon the subject.

No remarks should be made by the host or hostess on the refusal of
a guest to partake of a proffered dish. Pressing the food upon a
guest with "Oh, do take some," or "You must, it was made by so-
and-so," or indeed any remark upon the repast, is not only
annoying to the guest, but a proof of low-breeding in the
entertainers. There is a sort of hospitality about it, but it is a
rough barbarism. Who does not remember the description of Bridget
Elias' hospitable _gaucherie_ in Charles Lamb's "Poor Relation,"
when urging the poor relation to eat with the speech: "Do take
some more; remember you do not get pudding every day."

Never should a host or hostess apologize for the fare set before
their guest. Such apologies are generally a mere fishing for
compliment, untrue and in entirely bad taste. In inviting his
friends to dinner, the host binds himself to set before them the
best his house and purse can afford, and if the fare is good the
guest will soon find it out, if bad, no apologies will make it any

It is in bad taste to apologize to the waiters for the trouble
given them, and betrays a lamentable ignorance of the customs of
society. They are hired to wait upon the guests, and it is no
affair of those guests how they feel, as long as they discharge
their duty. To reprove a waiter is the height of ill-breeding.

Do not, when a dish is brought to you, say you prefer to be helped
after some one else. Accept or refuse what is offered to you, and
let the waiter pass the dish on. A gentleman, however, will see
that the lady he has escorted to the table is helped as she
wishes, before he attends to his own dinner, but to interfere with
the lady on the other side of him is all insult to her escort. He
may ask the lady under his care if she will be helped from any
dish offered him, before he accepts or declines for himself, and
will issue her orders for her to the waiter when she selects her

A gentleman or a lady will always say "Thank you" to a waiter,
but nothing more.

A guest must never find fault with any dish placed before him, and
to appear to question the quality or freshness of the viands by
smelling or fastidiously tasting them, is a positive insult to the
gentleman who has invited him to his table.

A host or hostess may never find fault before their guests,
neither with the dinner, with the servants, nor with each other.
Burnt soup, fish boiled to rags, underdone vegetables, heavy
pastry, must be endured with smiling equanimity. No scowl must
greet the crash that announces the fall of a tray of the finest
glass, no word of remonstrance greet the deluge of a plate of soup
over the tablecloth. If care has not been taken to secure first-
rate cooks and well-trained waiters, the faults of omission and
commission must be endured with placid serenity.

After the ladies have all been served, the guests to the right of
the hostess must be attended to, then the guest on her left, and
so on until all are served. Ten persons are all that one cook can
properly prepare a dinner for, and three waiters will be amply
employed in waiting upon that number. If more are invited the
attempt to make the conversation general had better not be made,
but the guests allowed to converse _tete-a-tete_.

Wine should be handed by the waiters after soup. To decline wine
by covering the mouth of the wine-glass with the hand is an ill-
bred gesture. Say simply "Not any, thank you," and the waiter will
not fill your glass.

Fish follows next in order. A slice, neatly _cut_, not hashed up
by bad carving, should be placed upon each plate, with a slice of
egg, and fish sauce. If there be a silver knife, use it to cut the
fish. If  not, take your fork in your right hand and supply the
place of the knife by a small piece of bread, which you should cut
off, and when your fish is eaten, leave upon your plate.

Do not eat as if you had good fare for the first time in your
life--that is to say, do not eat ravenously, and do not eat in a
noticeable way.

Never smack the lips when eating.

Never take a long, deep breath after you finish eating, as if the
exercise had fatigued you.

Never make noises in your mouth or throat.

Never suck your teeth, or pass your tongue round the outside of
your gums.

Never, even with cheese, put your knife into your mouth.

Never pick your teeth, or put your finger into your mouth.

If you find you have a fish-bone in your mouth, cover your lips
with a napkin to remove it. It is better to be very careful to
remove all bones before putting fish into your mouth. On no
account spit the bones out upon your plate.

Never take the bones of fowl or birds up in your fingers to gnaw or
suck them. Remove the meat with your knife, and convey it to your
mouth with your fork, never being too eager to clean off every
particle of flesh.

Wipe your finger tips, if soiled, upon the table napkin, never
upon your tongue or the table-cloth. An elegant eater will never
have occasion to think of his fingers.

Never use the table-cloth to wipe your mouth, you might as well
use it in place of your pocket handkerchief.

Never remark upon what is placed before you, either in praise or
dispraise of it.

Neither drink nor speak when you have anything in your mouth.

When you are helped, begin to eat, without regard to those who
have already, or have not yet, been helped.

Never watch the dishes as they are uncovered, nor make any
exclamation when you see their contents.

Under no circumstances tuck your napkin, bib-fashion, into your
shirt collar. Unfold it partially and put it in your lap, covering
your knees. A lady may slip a corner under her belt if there is
danger of its slipping upon her dress, but a gentleman must be
awkward indeed if he lets his napkin fall upon the floor.

No gentleman will ever settle himself in his chair, pushing back
his cuffs, as if for a "set-to," at the table.

If you make any general remark, do not look up at the waiters to
see what effect it has upon them. If they are well-trained they
will not move a muscle at hearing the most laughable story, nor
will they give any sign whatever that they have not closed their
ears like deaf adders to all that has been going on. In any case,
however, you must refrain from noticing them.

If you want anything, take the occasion of a waiter being near to
you, to ask for it in an undertone. To shout out "Waiter!" or
order one about, as if you were in a restaurant, is a certain mark
of ill-breeding.

Unless the party is a very small one, general conversation is
impossible. In such a case, you must converse with those on either
side of you, not confining your remarks exclusively to one.

Talk in a low, quiet tone, but never in a whisper.

To affect an air of mystery or secrecy at a dinner-table, is an
insult to your companion and company assembled.

It is in bad taste to force the attention of the company upon
yourself by loud talking or loud laughing.

Too many jokes or anecdotes are in bad taste, but the subjects for
conversation should not be too serious.

Any gentleman propounding a conundrum at the dinner-table deserves
to be taken away by the police.

To use one's own knife, spoon or fingers, instead of the
butterknife, sugar-tongs or salt-spoons, is to persuade the
company that you have never seen the latter articles before, and
are unacquainted with their use.

Never eat all that is on your plate, and above all never be guilty
of the _gaucherie_ of scraping your plate, or passing your bread
over it as if to clean it.

Never fill your mouth so full that you cannot converse; at the
same time avoid the appearance of merely playing with your food.
Eat in small mouthfuls, and rather slowly than rapidly.

If upon opening fruit you find it is not perfect, or there is a
worm in it, pass your plate quietly and without remark to the
waiter, who will bring you a clean one.

None but a low-bred clown will ever carry fruit or _bon bons_ away
from the table.

Drinking wine with people is an old custom, but it will now-adays
be found to exist only among the past or passing generation. If
you are, however, asked to take wine with any one, you should fill
your glass with the same sort of wine your friend has, and raise
it to your lips. You need only taste, not act upon the principle
of "no heel-taps."

A man would be looked upon as a curiosity, nay, many would not
understand what he meant, who should at the present day propose a
"sentiment" before drinking wine.

Never spit from your mouth the skins of grapes, the stones or pips
of fruits. Receive them upon the prongs of your fork, laid
horizontally, and place them as conveniently as so inelegant a
process will allow upon the edge of your plate.

Never play with your fingers upon the table.

Never play with your knife and fork, fidget with your salt-cellar,
balance your spoon on your tumbler, make pills of your bread, or
perform any of those vulgar antics unfortunately too often seen at

Never in conversation, illustrate your remarks by plans drawn upon
the table-cloth with your nail, or built of your knife, fork and

Never stretch your feet out under the table, so as to touch those
of your opposite neighbor. It is quite as bad to put them up under
you upon the chair-bar, or curl them up under the chair itself.

Try to take an easy position at table, neither pressing closely up
to it, nor yet so far away as to risk depositing your food upon
the floor instead of conveying it to your mouth.

Never touch fruit with your fingers. If you wish to peel an apple,
a pear or a peach, hold the fruit on a fork in your left hand, and
peel with a silver knife in your right. Eat it in small slices cut
from the whole fruit, but never bite it, or anything else at
table. Need I say no fruit should ever be sucked at the table.

When the hostess thinks her lady friends have taken as much
dessert as they wish, she catches the eye of the principal among
them; an interchange of ocular telegraphing takes place, the
hostess rises, and with her all the company rise; the gentlemen
make a passage for the ladies to pass; the one who is nearest to
the door opens it, and holds it open until all the ladies have
passed out of the room.

As soon as the ladies have retired the gentlemen may resume their
seats for more wine and conversation, but it is a very poor
compliment to the lady guests to linger long in the dining-room.

The ladies upon leaving the dining-room, retire to the drawing-
room, and occupy themselves until the gentlemen again join them.
It is well for the hostess to have a reserve force for this
interval, of photographic albums, stereoscopes, annuals, new
music, in fact, all the ammunition she can provide to make this
often tedious interval pass pleasantly.

If you dine in the French fashion, the gentlemen rise with the
ladies, each offering his arm to the lady he escorted to dinner,
and all proceed to the drawing-room together.

If the gentlemen remain to have coffee served in the dining-room,
tea may be served in the drawing-room to the ladies.

Upon returning to the drawing-room the gentlemen should never
cluster round the door, but join the ladies at once, striving to
repay the hospitality of the hostess by making themselves as
agreeable as possible to the guests.

From two to three hours after dinner is the proper time to leave
the house.

If the dinner is for the gentlemen guests alone, and the lady of
house presides, her duties are over when she rises after dessert.
The gentlemen do not expect to find her in the drawing-room again.
In this case cigars may be served with the coffee, and then the
servants may retire, unless especially summoned to wait. If
smoking is indulged in, have placed upon the table a number of
small match boxes, ashes receivers, and between the chairs
spittoons. And here let me add a few words upon smoking taken from
an English authority, but which, with a few exceptions will apply
equally well to lovers of the weed upon this side of the water. He

"But what shall I say of the fragrant weed which Raleigh taught
our gallants to puff in capacious bowls; which a royal pedant
denounced in a famous 'Counterblast,' which his flattering,
laureate, Ben Jonson, ridiculed to please his master; which our
wives and sisters protest gives rise to the dirtiest and most
unsociable habit a man can indulge in; of which some fair flowers
declare that they love the smell, and others that they will never
marry an indulger (which, by the way, they generally end in
doing); which has won a fame over more space and among better men
than Noah's grape has ever done; which doctors still dispute
about, and boys get sick over; but which is the solace of the
weary laborer; the support of the ill-fed; the refresher of
overwrought brains; the soother of angry fancies; the boast of the
exquisite; the excuse of the idle; the companion of the
philosopher; and the tenth muse of the poet. I will go neither
into the the medical nor the moral questions about the dreamy
calming cloud. I will content myself so far with saying what may
be said for everything that can bless and curse mankind, that in
moderation it is at least harmless; but what is moderate and what
is not, must be determined in each individual case, according to
the habits and constitution of the subjects. If it cures asthma,
it may destroy digestion; if it soothes the nerves, it may, in
excess, produce a chronic irritability.

"But I will regard it in a social point of view, and, first as a
narcotic, notice its effects on the individual character. I
believe then, that in moderation it diminishes the violence of the
passions, and particularly that of the temper. Interested in the
subject, I have taken care to seek instances of members of the
same family having the same violent temper by inheritance, of whom
the one has been calmed down by smoking, and the other gone on in
his passionate course. I believe that it induces a habit of calm
reflectiveness, which causes us to take less prejudiced, perhaps
less zealous views of life, and to be therefore less irritable in
our converse with our fellow-creatures. I am inclined to think
that the clergy, the squirearchy and the peasantry, are the most
prejudiced and most violent classes in this country (England);
there may be other reasons for this, but it is noteworthy that
these are the classes which smoke least. On the other hand, I
confess that it induces a certain lassitude, and a lounging, easy
mode of life, which is fatal both to the precision of manners and
the vivacity of conversation. The mind of a smoker is
contemplative rather than active, and if the weed cures our
irritability, it kills our wit. I believe that it is a fallacy to
suppose that it encourages drinking. There is more drinking and
less smoking in England than in any other country of the the
civilized world. There was more drinking among the gentry of last
century, who never smoked at all. Smoke and wine do not go well
together. Coffee and beer are its best accompaniments; and the one
cannot intoxicate, the other must be largely imbibed to do so. I
have observed among young bachelors that very little wine is drunk
in their chambers, and that beer is gradually taking its place.
The cigar, too, is an excuse for rising from the dinner-table,
where there are no ladies to go to.

"In another point of view, I am inclined to think that smoking has
conduced to make the society of men, when alone, less riotous,
less quarrelsome and even less vicious than it was. Where young
men now blow a common cloud, they were formerly driven to a
fearful consumption of wine; and this in their heads, they were
ready and roused to any iniquity. But the pipe is the bachelors
wife. With it, he can endure solitude longer, and is not forced
into low society in order to shun it. With it, too, the idle can
pass many an hour, which otherwise he would have given, not to
work, but to extravagant follies. With it, he is no longer
restless, and impatient for excitement of any kind. We never hear
now of young blades issuing in bands from their wine to beat the
watch or disturb the slumbering citizens, as we did thirty or
forty years ago, when smoking was still a rarity; they are all
puffing harmlessly in their chambers now. But, on the other hand,
I foresee with dread a too tender allegiance to the pipe, to the
destruction of good society, and the abandonment of the ladies. No
wonder they hate it, dear creatures! the pipe is the worst rival a
woman can have, and it is one whose eyes she cannot scratch out;
who improves with age, while she herself declines; who has an art
which no woman possesses, that of never wearying her devotee; who
is silent, yet a companion; costs little, yet gives much pleasure;
who, lastly, never upbraids, and always yields the same joy. Ah!
this is a powerful rival to wife or maid; and no wonder that at
last the woman succumbs, consents, and, rather than lose her lord
or master, even supplies the hated herb with her own fair hands.

"There are rules to limit this indulgence. One must never smoke,
nor even ask to smoke, in the company of the fair. If they know
that in a few minutes you will be running off to your cigar, the
fair will do well--say it is in a garden, or so--to allow you to
bring it out and smoke it there.

"One must never smoke, again, in the streets--that is, in
daylight. The deadly crime may be committed, like burglary, after
dark, but not before.

"One must never smoke in a room inhabited at times by the ladies;
thus, a well-bred man, who has a wife or sister, will not offer to
smoke in the dining-room after dinner.

"One must never smoke in a public place, where ladies are or might
be; for instance, a flower-show or promenade.

"One may smoke in a railway-carriage, in spite of by-laws, if one
has first obtained the consent of every one present; but if there
be a lady there, though she give her consent, smoke not. In nine
cases out of ten, she will give it from good nature.*
*In America, cars are especially provided for smokers, and no
gentleman will violate etiquette by smoking in any other.

"One must never smoke in a close carriage; one may ask and obtain
leave to smoke, when returning from a pic-nic or expedition, in an
open carriage.

"One must never smoke in a theatre, on a race-course, nor in
church. This last is not, perhaps, a needless caution. In the
Belgian churches you see a placard announcing: "_Ici on ne mache
pas du tabac._'

"One must never smoke when anybody shows an objection to it.

"One must never smoke a pipe in the streets.

"One must never smoke at all in the coffee-room of a hotel.

"One must never smoke, without asking permission, in the presence
of a clergyman.

"But if you smoke, or if you are in the company of smokers, and
are to appear afterwards in the presence of ladies, you must
change your clothes to smoke in. A host who invites you to smoke
will generally offer you an old coat for the purpose.

"You must also after smoking rinse the mouth well out, and if
possible brush the teeth.

"You should never smoke in another person's house without leave,
and you should not ask leave to do so, if there are ladies in the

"When you are going to smoke a cigar, you should offer one at the
same time to anybody present.

"You should always smoke a cigar given to you whether good or bad,
and never make any remark upon its quality."

At a gentleman's party it is the host alone who may call upon any
of the company for a toast, a speech or a song. No matter how much
others may desire it, they may never invite each other.

During the week following a dinner party, it is etiquette for each
guest to call upon the hostess, and it is rude to delay the call
more than a fortnight.

In concluding this chapter we give from a modern English work the
following bills of fare for dinners suiting the different seasons
of the year, which may be useful to young housekeepers:


Consomme soup, with quenelles; Turbot, with Dutch sauce.
TWO REMOVES.--Braized fillet of veal, larded a la Chateaubriand;
Roast turkey, with puree of mushrooms.
FOUR ENTREES.--Oyster Kromeskys, a la Russe; Pork cutlets, sauce
Robert; Partridges, a la Prince of Wales; Supreme of fowls, a la
SECOND COURSE.--Pintail; Snipes.
ONE REMOVE.--Fondu of Parmesan cheese.
FOUR ENTREMETS.-Salad, a la Rachel; Vol-au-vent of preserved
greengages; Plombieres cream iced; Braized celery with brown

Cray-fish soup; Spey trout, parsley sauce.
TWO REMOVES.--Boiled fowls, oyster sauce; Glazed tongue A la
Two ENTREES.--Lamb cutlets, asparagus, peas; Boudins of rabbits, a
la Reine.
SECOND COURSE.--Lobster salad; Green goose.
FOUR ENTREMETS.--Orange fritters; Tapioca pudding; Wine jelly;
Potatoes a la Lyonnaise.

Puree of green peas, soup; Stewed sturgeon, matelotte sauce;
Fillets of mackerel a la maitre d'hotel.
TWO REMOVES.--Roast fore-quarter of lamb; Spring chickens A la
FOUR ENTREES.--Fillets of ducklings, with green peas; Mutton
cutlets a la Wyndham; Blanquette of chicken with cucumbers;
Timbale of macaroni a la Milanaise.
SECOND COURSE.--Pigeons; Leveret.
TWO REMOVES.--Flemish gauffers; Iced Souffle.
SIX ENTREMETS.-French beans, stewed; Mayonnaise of chicken; Peas a
la Francaise; Peach jelly with noyau; Love's wells glace with
chocolate; Flave of apricots and rice.

Potage a la Julienne; Baked haddock, Italian sauce.
TWO REMOVES.--Braized neck of mutton, en cherveuil; Roast pheasant
a la Chipolata.
TWO ENTREES.--Pork cutlets, tomato sauce; Curried rabbit and rice.
SECOND COURSE.--Roast black-cock; Oyster omelette.
FOUR ENTREMETS.--Potatoes a la Duchesse; Blanc mange; Apple
tartlets; Semolina pudding.

Turtle soup; Turbot a la Vatel; Fillets of sole a la Tartare.
THREE REMOVES.--Roast turkey, Perigueux sauce; Braized ham a la
jardiniere; Spiced round of beef.
FOUR ENTREES.--Marrow patties; Salmi of pheasants a la financiere;
Sweet breads a la Saint Cloud; Mutton cutlets a la Vicomtesse.
SECOND COURSE.--Woodcocks; Grouse; Mince pies; Plum pud ding.
SIX ENTREMETS.--Broccoli with Parmesan cheese; Italian creams;
Croute a l'Amanas; Salad a la Rachel; Meringues a la Parisienne;
Punch jelly.


THE form of invitations will be found on page 49.

An invitation to a ball should be sent out from two to three weeks
before the evening, and should be answered within a day or two of
being received.

As to the number of guests to be invited, no precise rules can be
laid down. The size of your room does not seem to be any guide.
The custom is to ask rather more than twice as many as your rooms
will hold; but one-third more will be enough, as it will allow of
disappointments at the last moment, even if all have accepted the
invitations. Besides, during the gayest of the season, the fashion
of going to several balls in one night necessitates ensuring the
presence of a sufficiently large number of guests all through the
evening. If you really wish for dancing, do not exceed the last
limits. If, however, your aim is to have the largest ball of the
season, a crush and crowd, to make a sensation, then invite your
entire visiting list, and endure the consequences.

A hundred guests constitute a "ball;" over that, a "large ball;"
under that, merely a "dance."

One of the first requisites of a ball-room is thorough
ventilation, especially if there is a prospect of a large number
of guests.

One of the most desirable points in a ball is to have a
beautifully arranged room. The floor must be well waxed, and
perfectly even, and it is well to draw a cord across two-thirds of
it, not admitting more than can dance inside the space so cut off
at once. The French make their ball-rooms perfect flower-gardens.
Every comer has its immense bouquet; the walls are gracefully
wreathed; bouquets, baskets, and exquisitely decorated pots of
growing plants are placed in every available place. The
staircases, landings, and supper-room are all filled with floral
treasures, harmonizing with fine effect with the brilliant lights
and gay the dresses of the ladies. It adds to the effect to
conceal the musicians behind a screen of evergreen and flowers.

The dressing-rooms should be provided with two servants apiece,
and small cards, with the names of the invited guests upon them,
should be in readiness to pin to the wraps of each one.

In each dressing-room, have plenty of water, soap, and towels upon
the washstand, several brushes and combs, small hand-mirrors, pin-
cushions well filled, and stick pomade upon the bureau. The
ladies' room should also have hair-pins, a work-box in readiness
to repair any accidental rip or tear; cologne, hartshorn, and
salts, in case of faintness. The gentlemen's room should be
provided with a boot-jack, a whisk, and a clothes-brush.

No one should accept an invitation to a ball who cannot or who
will not dance. They are mere encumbrances. Nothing is more trying
to the feelings of a hostess than to see a number of wallflowers
ornamenting (?) her ball-room.

The hour at which one may go to a ball varies from ten o'clock in
the evening until daybreak. Any one who attends several balls in
one evening will, of course, find it impossible to appear at an
early hour at each one.

The lady of the house--who should, if possible, know the name of
everybody who enters the room--must stand near the door, so as to
receive her guests, to each of whom she must find something to
say, no matter how trifling. The host must also be near, to
welcome arrivals, and the sons to introduce people. The young
ladies must see that the dances are kept up, and should not dance
themselves till they have found partners for all their friends.
They may with perfect propriety ask any gentleman present to be
introduced to a partner, and he is bound to accept the invitation;
but the lady must be careful whom she asks. Many present may be
entire strangers to her. Miss A. has brought her betrothed; Miss
B. introduces her cousin, Captain ---, on a short leave of absence
from his regiment in Texas; Miss C. presents her brother, just
returned from California; Miss D. begs leave to introduce a cousin
on a short visit to the city; Miss E., a belle, has informed a
dozen or two of her admirers where they may bow to her on the
evening of the ball. All these strangers bow to the hostess, and
must be provided with partners. The "Man in the Club Window" says:

"I have known a case where a distinguished-looking young man,
having declined the lady's invitation to dance, but being pressed
by,' I can't make up the lancers without you,' somewhat
reluctantly accepted, performed his part so well that his partner
was quite _eprise_ with him, and even ventured on a little
flirtation. You can imagine her dismay when, a little later in the
evening, she saw her charming acquaintance carrying up a pile of
plates from the kitchen to the supper-room. For the first time in
her life, she had danced with an occasional waiter."

If a gentleman act as escort to a lady, he must call at her house,
at the hour she appoints, with a carriage, and he is expected to
send a bouquet in the course of the afternoon. Upon reaching the
house of the hostess for the evening, he must escort his fair
charge to the dressing-room, leave her at the door, make his own
toilet as rapidly as possibly, and return to meet the lady at the
dressing-room door again, escort her to the ball-room, and at once
to the hostess. She is obliged by etiquette to dance the first
dance with him; but after that, he may with propriety allow her
liberty to select other partners, always watching, however, to see
that she is never neglected. He must be her escort to supper, and
ready at any moment to leave the ball-room to escort her home

If a gentleman is unaccompanied by a lady, he must invite one of
the ladies of the house for the first dance, and yield gracefully
if she declines on the plea of want of room or partners for all
her guests, consenting smilingly if she requests him to lead out
the homeliest and most awkward of her wall-flowers.

The music must be first a march, then a quadrille, a polka, a
waltz, a galop, and so on, with two or three round dances to each
quadrille, until fourteen dances are completed, when another march
announces supper. Seven to ten dances may follow supper. Each
guest must be provided with a ball-card with a printed programme
of the dances, and space for the engagements upon it, and a tiny
pencil attached to it. Many ladies carry their own engagement-
card; but they must depend upon the programme for the order of
dances. The fashion of hanging a few printed programmes in the
room is not considered _en regle_.

The supper-room must be thrown open at midnight, and remain open
until the ball closes. It is, however, an extreme of bad taste and
low breeding for gentlemen to cluster round the table in groups
and remain there. It is one of the duties of the hostess to see
that no young lady loses her supper for want of an escort to the
slipper-room. If there are no young gentlemen in the family, she
must request one of her guests to go to the rescue of the forlorn

No gentleman must wait until the music has commenced before
selecting his partner.

A lady who declines dancing on the pretext of fatigue must dance
no more, unless she has said she wished to rest for that dance

If a lady decline dancing with a gentlemen, it is rude for him to
turn from her to another lady who has heard the refusal, and
invite her to dance. If the first lady has a prior engagement, he
must seek another partner in another part of the room; if she
refuses from fatigue or a disinclination to dance that set, it is
a compliment to her for him to remain beside her, and endeavor to
entertain her while the dance is in progress.

A lady should never give her bouquet, gloves, and fan to a
gentleman to hold during a dance, unless he is her husband,
brother, or escort for the evening.

A gentleman, in waltzing with a young lady, must never encircle
her waist until the dance actually commences, and drop his arm
from around her as soon as the music ceases. American gentlemen
would do well to study the waltz with a German teacher, as they
understand more perfectly than any others the most delicate way of
dancing this objectionable dance, and, above all, how to hold a
lady lightly and firmly without embracing her.

When a lady expresses a desire to sit down before the close of a
dance, it is exceedingly rude for a gentlemen to insist upon a
continuation of the dance. He must escort her to a seat at once,
and then express his regret at the interrupted pleasure. She may
with propriety release him to seek another partner, but it is a
poor compliment for him to accept the proposal.

A gentleman should never invite a lady to be his partner in a
dance with which he is not perfectly familiar. It is tiresome in
the extreme to guide a partner through a dance, and the ballroom
is not a dancing-school for practice.

If a gentleman takes a lady's seat during a dance, he must rise
from it as soon as the dance is over, not waiting for her to
actually return to it, as she may hesitate to do if she sees that
it is occupied.

No lady must enter or cross a ball-room unescorted.

No lady may refuse to be introduced to a gentleman at a private
ball; but at a public ball she may with perfect propriety refuse
any introduction made by the master of ceremonies, or by mere

Confidential conversation in a ball-room is in extreme bad taste.

Do not be too particular about dancing. Taking steps in a
quadrille is out of date, all the figures being executed to a
graceful walk.

To remain too late at a ball is not well-bred, and seems to imply
that you are unaccustomed to such pleasures. Do not engage
yourself, therefore, for the last two or three dances.

No gentleman should take the vacant seat next to a lady unless he
is acquainted with her, and not then without first asking

A gentleman must offer his arm, never his hand, to lead a lady to
and from the dance.

A lady must be very careful not to engage herself to two gentlemen
for the same dance, unless, for a round dance, she states: "I am
engaged for the first half of the waltz, but will dance the second
part with you." In that case, she must tell her first partner of
her second engagement, that she may not offend him when she takes
another partner after leaving him.

If a lady wishes to decline dancing, whether from dislike to the
gentleman who invites her, or from whatever cause, she must make
some excuse; but she must never refuse point blank, nor must she,
after having refused to dance with one gentleman, consent to dance
with another.

When introduced, it is sufficient for a gentleman to say to a
lady, "May I have the pleasure of dancing this waltz with you,
Miss C---?" or if the lady be engaged for the first dance
following the introduction, he may request the favor of putting
his name upon her engagement card for another.

A young lady should not dance more than twice with the same
gentleman, unless she wants to be noticed, or is indifferent
whether she be so or not.

A lady may consult her own pleasure about recognizing a ballroom
acquaintance at a future meeting.

Every gentleman must make a point of inviting the ladies of the
house to dance; and if he be kind, he will certainly devote
himself--for a portion of the evening, at least--to those ladies
for whom the May of life has bloomed and passed away, and who
generally sit round the room looking wistfully disconsolate.

After every dance following the announcement of supper, offer your
partner your arm, and invite her to the supper-room (at a ball,
refreshments are never handed round). Should she decline going, or
has already been there, take her back to her chaperon, or party,
and, procuring a seat for her, thank her for the pleasure the
dance has afforded you.

No lady should detain her partner long in the supper-room; she may
be thus forcing him to be guilty of the rudeness of breaking an
engagement with another lady for the following dance.

No gentleman should linger round the supper-table. Your hostess
invites you to a ball to dance, and be agreeable, not to haunt her
supper-room, as if you were starving.

Avoid all absence of mind, staring, listlessness, and other

Never swing your arms about, and try to avoid being conspicuous in
any way.

Take the partner with whom you may happen to be dancing when
supper is announced to the supper-table, unless she has come with
a gentleman, in which case you must not usurp his privilege. If
she is disengaged, escort her to a seat in the supper-room, if
possible, and see that she is served with the dishes she selects.
Do not take your own supper at the same time; wait till the lady
has finished; then take her back to the ball-room, and repeat the
process, if necessary, with some other lonely damsel. When all the
ladies have been once to the supper-room, the gentlemen may think
of their own supper.

Gloves of white kid must be worn during the entire evening, and it
is well to have a fresh pair in readiness to put on after supper.

On quitting a ball, it is not necessary to take a formal leave of
the hostess. Indeed, it is preferable to make your departure as
quietly as possible, in order to prevent the others from thinking
it later than perhaps it is, and so breaking up the ball at an
earlier hour than the hostess may desire.

If a gentleman escorts a lady home from a ball, she is not obliged
to invite him to enter, and if she does so, he must decline the
invitation. He must, however, request permission to call the
following day or evening, and he must make that call.

A gentleman in a ball-room cannot be too careful not to injure the
delicate fabric worn by the ladies around him. Spurs are in bad
taste, even if a cavalry officer is otherwise in full uniform.

While one dance is in progress, it is not in good taste to make
arrangements for another.

It is a gross breach of etiquette on the part of either a lady or
a gentleman to forget a ball-room engagement.

It is not according, to etiquette for married people to dance
together at either a private or a public ball.


PARTIES in the city comprise conversaziones, private concerts,
private theatricals, soirees, dramatic readings, tea-parties,
matinees--fact, almost any in-door gathering together of people,
exclusive of balls and dinner companies. In the country, small
dancing-parties, tea-parties, and conversaziones are also
comprised under the head of parties; but the outdoor occasions are
of much greater number and variety: croquet parties, sailing
parties, boating parties, pic-nics, private fetes, berrying
parties, nutting parties, May festivals, Fourth of July festivals
--in fact, anything that will give an excuse for a day spent in
out-door frolicking.

For a conversazione, under which head are included "Receptions"
and "At Homes," invitations should be sent out a week beforehand.
Conversation is, as the name implies, the principal occupation for
the time, and where literary people are gathered together, or
those engrossed in scientific matters, the sole one. For parties
of young people, however, the conversazione admits of music and
impromptu dances.

For all small evening parties, the host and hostess remain near
the door during the early part of the evening, to receive their
guests. Late comers, however, must not expect to find them still
nailed to this one spot, as, after the majority of the guests are
assembled, their duty is to circulate round the room and entertain
them. They should, however, be quick to observe any late arrivals,
and advance to welcome them as soon as possible. As the guests
enter the room, the hostess should advance a step or two towards
them, speaking a few words of cordial welcome, to the elder ladies
first, then to the younger ones, and finally to the gentlemen. If
the new comers are strangers to the rest of the guests, she must
introduce them at once to those present; if, however, there are
mutual friends present, it is their duty to leave the hostess
after a few minutes, that she may be free to receive her other

The hostess must remain constantly amongst her guests. For her to
fidget in and out constantly, as if cooking the supper, or
training the waiters, is a mark of low breeding. The most
perfectly well-bred hostess is the one who seems to have no
thought beyond the circle of her guests.

As many rooms as possible should be thrown open and supplied with
objects of interest in the arts and sciences. People of some
public note, whether for travel, art, learning, science, or any
attainment, are often placed upon exhibition at the conversazione.
If such a lion is invited, it is well to have others, even if of
lesser magnitude, to prevent too much attention being concentrated
upon one guest.

If a hostess sees that a _tete-a-tete_ conversation is becoming
dull, she must make it a trio by the introduction of some
sprightly third, or change the duet by substituting another
partner and carrying off one to introduce elsewhere. If, however,
any conversation seems to be animated and giving pleasure, neither
of the parties so engaged will thank the hostess for interruption.

If dancing is introduced, the etiquette of the ball-room is also
the etiquette for the evening party. It is best for the hostess to
provide a pianist, if she does not herself preside at the piano,
as it is excessively ill-bred to expect part of the guests to play
for the remainder to dance. Many good-natured people find
themselves thus victimized--invited "because they are always so
willing to play for dancing." It is a good plan in a dancing party
to have ices alone handed round once or even twice during the
evening, and a hot supper later, if at all. Ices, lemonade, cake,
confectionery, and fruits are, however, quite sufficient
refreshment for small parties.

If the evening of a party is stormy, the hostess should have a
waiter at the door, with a _large_ umbrella, to escort the guests
from the carriages to the house, or, better still, have an awning
stretched across the sidewalk.

If a party is mixed-conversation, music, and dancing, all forming
a portion of the evening's entertainment-it is the part of the
hostess to invite guests to sing and play, and she must be careful
not to overlook any amateurs in her invitations. If a guest
declines, it is in bad taste to urge the performance. If the lady
of the house is herself a good performer, she must play or sing
but once, and then after all others have been first invited. A
guest should only be invited to play once, unless at a generally
expressed desire of the remainder of the company.

It is best for amateur performers to learn a few pieces of music
without depending upon their notes, as, if they send or carry
notes, it is a hint that they expect to be invited to play; if
they do not, they are obliged to decline when invited.

It is excessively rude to converse loudly when any one is playing
or singing. If your companion does not cease talking, to listen,
converse in a very low tone, and withdraw from the immediate
vicinity of the performer. On the other hand, if you are invited
to play, do not wait for quiet in the room, nor exhibit any
annoyance if your most exquisite passages are drowned in the buzz
of conversation.

A gentleman who is a good pianist may, with perfect propriety,
offer his services to the hostess as orchestra for impromptu
dancing, or may offer to relieve any lady so engaged, to allow her
to dance. If, however, there are more ladies than gentlemen, and
he is needed to fill up a set, he must not insist upon playing,
but go where he is most needed.

Never offer to turn the leaves for any one playing unless you can
read music rapidly; otherwise you may confuse the performer by
turning too soon or too late.

Never offer to sing a second unless invited by the lady who is to
sing also. The hostess may wish her friends to hear a duet, which
will be disagreeable to the performers.

Members of the same family, cousins or other relatives, should not
keep together in general society. They can see each other on other
occasions, and the object of parties is to promote sociality, not

If you are asked to play an accompaniment, do not seek to display
your own talent, but play so as to afford the best support
possible for the voice singing. The same rule applies to a second
in any instrumental  duet, which is never intended to drown the
sound of the leading instrument.

When the lady of the house invites any lady guest to sing or play,
the gentleman standing nearest to her should offer his arm to
escort her to the piano or harp. He should stand near her during
the performance of the music, and, if competent, turn the leaves
of her music. She may also request him to hold her gloves, bouquet
and fan. When she rises, he should conduct her to a seat, and
thank her for the pleasure she has given him and others.

It is ill-bred to comment upon the piano, even if shockingly out
of tune or worn out. To look at a six-octave piano and decline
playing because all your music is written for seven octaves, is
positively insulting to a hostess. If it is true, decline upon
some other pretext.

Private concerts and theatricals ought to be very good to be
successful. Professional singers should be secured for the former,
and if amateurs sing, they must be very confident of their own
powers before making the attempt to appear before an audience,
even of personal friends. Between the parts, conversation may
flow, but is rude in the extreme during the performances. The best
hours are from two to six or from eight to eleven P.M. The rooms
should be arranged so as to allow a clear space at one end for the
performers; the guests should be seated, and a general silence
prevail excepting during the intervals of the performance. If the
concert is divided into two parts, it is quite permissible to rise
during the intermission, promenade if agreeable, meet friends, and
change seats, being careful to be seated again when the
performance re-commences.

For private theatricals, only the best amateurs should be
retained. It is very rude to talk during the acts, and while
applause should not be too boisterous, disapproval by hissing or
otherwise is a thing unheard of. Ices and light refreshments
should be handed round between the acts. Where there is no
arrangement for a private theatre, and where the curtain is hung,
as is most common, between the folding-doors, the audience-room
must be filled with chairs or benches in rows, and, if possible,
the back rows raised higher than the others. These are often
removed at the close of the performance, and the guests then
converse or dance.

To beat time or hum the air at a concert is in extremely bad

It is the part of the hostess at a private concert and private
theatricals--which latter include charades, tableaux, proverbs,
and dramatic readings--to arrange the programmes and apportion the
parts, unless she appoints a stage-manager amongst her guests. The
performers should seek to aid her by perfect good-nature in
accepting her arrangements, and by willingness to accept any
allotted part, even if distasteful or obscure. All cannot be
first, and the performer who good-naturedly accepts a small part,
and performs it _well_, will probably be invited to a more
conspicuous position on the next occasion. The hostess or host
must never take conspicuous parts, unless they are solicited to do
so by all the rest of the _corps dramatique_.

Nothing but the most absolute necessity, or an excuse from some
very grave cause, should prevent the attendance of any one who has
undertaken a part. It is a positive insult to the rest of the
party to inconvenience them by remaining away upon some trivial
excuse, for the smallest part must be filled by somebody, and it
is not easy to furnish substitutes upon such occasions.

The hostess should consult each performer before allotting to them
a part, and endeavor to suit each one.

Private concerts and private theatricals should be followed by a
supper, as they are fatiguing for the performers, and oftentimes
as much so to the audience.

If a party are invited to an informal dramatic reading, it is not
necessary to divide the room, excepting by a large table, upon
which the books are placed. The host or hostess, while endeavoring
to give to each guest the most favorable opportunity to display
their own powers, should still, if they are good readers, be ready
to oblige their guests by reading also, carefully avoiding any
attempt to outshine them.

Matinees are usually held in the open air, in some good ground, in
which a brass band should be playing, and plenty of good flowers
displayed, embellished by the best dressed people it is possible
to assemble together. There are not any introductions; people
amuse themselves as best they can. Luncheon may be spread in-
doors, or upon tables under the trees, or if tents are erected,
inside of these. Fruits, ices, salads, cold meats, confectionery-
in short, any cold collation, with wine, tea, and coffee, should
be served. Full morning dress is most appropriate.

Croquet parties are very fashionable, and meet generally at about
three P.M. The host should be careful to have his grounds well
shaded, his mallets, balls, and other arrangements in perfect
order. Seats for such guests as are not playing should be
scattered about in shady places. Refreshments may be handed round
between the games, or arranged as for matinees.

Within the past few years, a species of entertainment of a past
generation has been revived in England, and some attempts have
been made to introduce it in this country. It was, and is, called
the "Kettledrum." Tea and coffee, with biscuit and cake, are
served round from five to half-past five. Any one in the visiting
circle of the house may go without an invitation; the dress is
full morning dress, and the guests dance until seven o'clock. From
them guests often go to dinner parties, and thence to balls, so
that a man may be considered to be in harness to society from five
P.M. to 4 A.M., and to be rather hardly driven, too.

Ceremony is laid aside upon these occasions, and people act with
greater freedom than at more formal gatherings.

In country parties, ceremony is often required, even upon
occasions where more freedom of action would be desirable.
Inattention to this matter may give offence, as the hostess may
fancy herself slighted merely because she is not city-bred.

Avoid in country parties treading upon delicate ground, talking of
local squabbles, church matters, or the acknowledged feud of the

Be punctual to the time stated for any kind of a country party, as
one late arrival may delay the carriages, boats, or other
conveyances of an entire party. Many of these expeditions start at
a very early hour, to avoid the road during the heat of the day,
and if you accept the invitation, you must relinquish your morning
nap and appear at the appointed time. Seek out the hostess upon
your arrival, and if you can in any way assist her, either by
running for tardy servants, packing luncheon hampers, arranging
the order of vehicles, or any other _last_ duties, do so with

Private fetes in the country correspond to matinees in town, and
the same rules apply.

At pic-nics, whether water or land parties, etiquette is set at
naught; yet the true gentleman and lady will never leave true
courtesy and politeness at home, even if they lay aside forms and
ceremonies. Everybody is to enjoy the time and freedom as much as
possible, "within the limits of becoming mirth;" yet an act of
rudeness, a disregard of the gentle and delicate attentions of
society, will never increase the pleasure.

Gentlemen at pic-nics must consent to become waiters, guides,
servants to the ladies; must "scale mountains," climb trees,
perform any feats desired by the fair tyrants, if they fancy "that
lovely flower," or "exquisite bunch of sea-weed," in impossible-
to-get-at places. If on a fishing party, it is the gentlemen's
place to bait the hooks for the fair anglers, to assist them in
landing their prey, to find them shady nooks for seats, and in
every way to assist them. If nutting or berrying are the objects
of the party, the gentlemen must climb the nut-trees, seek out the
berry-bushes, carry double allowances of baskets and kettles, and
be ready for any assistance required in climbing fences or
scrambling over rocks. By the way, the etiquette for climbing a
fence is for the gentleman to go over as gracefully as possible,
turn his back upon the lady, and not look round until she claims
his hand to spring from the topmost bar. She will not thank him if
he insists upon shoving her over first, or watches her while she
climbs up.

Boisterous deportment is not in good taste. Even the most romping
games may be conducted as becomes ladies and gentlemen, not as
clowns. Couples should avoid straying too long or too far from
their companions.

Even if the luncheon or dinner is spread on the grass, or eaten
out of a basket, gentlemen will see to the comfort of the ladies
before eating themselves, and, need I say, the freedom from the
restraints of the table affords no excuse for gluttony or rudeness
of any description.

On returning from a pic-nic, the thanks of the party are due to
the originators of it, and should be paid by each one before the
company disperses.

Singing a comic song is a dangerous experiment, as you may be
personal without intending it. An English lady of rank, speaking
of an evening party, says: "At an evening party, given expressly
in honor of a distinguished lady of color, we heard a thoughtless
amateur dash into the broadly comic, but terribly inappropriate'
nigger' song of' 'Sally, Come Up.' Before he had got through the
first verse, he had perceived his mistake, and was so overwhelmed
with shame that he could scarcely preserve sufficient presence of
mind to carry him through to the end."

A modern writer of talent says: "Your pleasure at any party will
depend far more upon what you take with you into the room than
upon what you find there. Ambition, vanity, pride, will all go
with anxiety, and you will probably carry them all home again,
with the additional burden of disappointment. Even if they are all
gratified, you will know that others are disliking you, even if
envious of you. To go with a sincere desire to please others by
amiability, good-nature and sympathy will probably result in your
own popularity, and if you entirely forget yourself, you will be
astonished to find how much others insist upon remembering you."

If at any morning or evening party you meet a distinguished guest,
it is ill-bred to follow him from one place to another, listening
to every word he utters, and making him have the uncomfortable
sensation of being "stared at."

Impromptu charades are a very popular amusement at the present
day, at both in-door and out-door parties. If you have no talent
for them, you will only confuse others and make yourself appear
absurd by insisting upon taking a part; but even if you are dull,
do not refuse your assistance if it is really required, trying, by
tact and modesty, to cover up any deficiency in wit or talent.

The best rule for the management of parties, be they in-door or
out-door, morning or evening, city or country, is to endeavor to
find out the wishes of the majority of the guests and act upon
that knowledge. To force a large party of people to listen to
awkward, bungling charades, because two or three amateur actors
desire to "show off," proves a want of tact in the hostess; to
allow a few young people to guide the entertainments in a large
assembly of older and graver ones, is in equally bad taste; it is,
of course, better to assemble together as far as possible only
those who are likely to be congenial and interested in the same
subjects; but this is not always possible, and where the company
is mixed, the republican spirit should preside, and the "majority

One word of warning to all who give parties. You can never tell
what ruin may be commencing when you urge wines or intoxicating
beverages upon your young guests. You may be the first to
stimulate the appetite; you may renew a passion that has been
subdued; you may turn a wavering will from the hardly gained
resolution to abstain. There are instances, not a few, but many,
where the love of liquor, conquered and subdued, has been revived
in fiercest heat by cordials, brandied peaches, wine-sauces, and
similar apparently innocent refreshments. It is better to appear
mean than to tempt to ruin, and in these days of temperance
movements, no lady will be censured or misunderstood who banishes
every drop of intoxicating liquor from her table.


NEVER pay any visit upon a general invitation. The Spanish
hidalgo, who declares to you that his house, lands, all that he
has, are yours, would be greatly surprised if you appropriated any
of his things. It is the same thing, more or less, with people
elsewhere who give people general invitations to take up their
quarters in their houses.

There are instances of visits of a month's duration being made
upon the invitation, "If you visit B---, I hope that you will not
forget that I reside there, and will be very happy to see you."
Yet, even where friends are not newly made, but of long standing,
it is best not to pay visits unless by special invitation. A
thousand events may occur to render it inconvenient for one friend
to have company that cannot be known to another, hundreds of
miles, perhaps, away. If a friend really desires to extend
hospitality to another, she will send her an invitation, which can
be accepted with the prospect of mutual convenience and pleasure.

Even in travelling, if you are unexpectedly detained in a city
where you have friends, do not drive to their house uninvited. Go
first to a hotel, and let them know of your arrival, leaving it
optional with them to extend hospitality. To drive at once to the
house, with your baggage, forces an invitation, which may cause
much annoyance and inconvenience, even if they are really glad to
see you, and it also renders you liable to be accused of meanness
and a desire to save your hotel bill. If you are afraid your
friends will feel hurt if you do not "make their house your home,"
at least write to them and ascertain if they can conveniently
receive you as you pass through their city. Even with relatives,
it is better to announce your coming, that your hostess may so
arrange her engagements and household as to leave her time to
really enjoy your visit.

A special invitation should specify who is invited, and no one not
mentioned should go. "Love me, love my dog," is a proverb that
will not apply in such cases. A person who is invited to visit at
a friend's house is not at liberty to bring children and servants
who were not included in the invitation. A wife may, of course,
accompany her husband, unless there be special reason to the
contrary, and a husband must always have the opportunity of
accompanying his wife, or joining her.

If the length of your visit is not specified in your invitation, a
week is a good limit for your stay. At all events, make a move at
the end of that time, and if you are invited to stay longer, and
know that it is convenient for you to do so, the time can then be
definitely decided upon.

When you receive an invitation by letter, answer it at the
earliest possible moment, and say decidedly whether you accept or
decline it. To leave your friends in doubt may prevent the same
invitation being extended to others. As soon as possible after
accepting an invitation, write and let your friends know by what
train to expect you, and keep your engagement, that you may not
keep any one waiting for you at the station for nothing. If you
are unavoidably detained, write or telegraph and say so, naming
another hour for your arrival.

In inviting a friend to pay you a visit, name a season when will
you will be able to devote most of your time to their
entertainment. Have always a room devoted especially to your
guest, and be sure that no one intrudes there without a special
invitation, and never enter it yourself without an invitation to
do so. Before the arrival of a guest, see yourself that the room
is in perfect order, well warmed if in winter, shaded and cool if
in summer; let there be every convenience for bath and change of
dress, and writing materials and stamps ready to write if desired
before unpacking. Have always a feather bed and mattress, both
feather and hair pillows upon the bed, that your guest may have
the choice. Many prefer feathers in the warmest weather, others a
mattress even in winter. Let the fire, in winter, be made every
morning before your guest rises, and keep a good supply of fuel in
the room.

It is the duty of the host to send a carriage to the depot to meet
an expected visitor, and if possible to go himself. After a warm
welcome, show the guest at once to the room prepared, and give
ample time for a bath and change of dress, if it is in the day
time. If the arrival is late in the evening, have a substantial
supper prepared, and then allow the traveller to retire, being
careful that on the first arrival the breakfast can be ready at a
late hour, that your friend may not be disturbed to breakfast with
the family.

It is the duty of the hostess to share the meals of a guest, no
matter how irregular; but any truly polite person will pay strict
attention to the customary meal times.

When staying with friends, endeavor as much as possible to conform
to their regular habits. Be punctual at meal times. Ascertain
over-night the hour for breakfast, and be particular to be dressed
in time for it. After breakfast, it is customary to leave visitors
to their own devices, unless some special arrangement is made for
the forenoon; but the hostess should introduce her guests to the
piano, billiard-table, portfolios library-any device for passing
time at her command; and the visitor should accept this hint, and
expect no further attention during the forenoon.

It is, however, the duty of the host and hostess to accompany
their guests to any points of interest in their city or
neighborhood, to accompany them if they desire to do any shopping,
and if they have any special habit, as rising late, napping in the
afternoon, or other little self-indulgence, to see that they are
never disturbed in it.

It is also a kindly courtesy, if your friends have acquaintances
ill the city beside yourself, to inform them of their arrival,
even if strangers to yourself, and invite them to call, dine, or
take tea during the visit. If you give your guests a party, you
must invite all their friends in the city, even if they are
strangers to yourself. Invite them in your guest's name, enclosing
your own invitation in theirs.

Host and hostess should give up as much of their time as possible
to their guests, and should see that they are amused and taken
care of. It is a mistake, however, to suppose that visitors
require constant attention, and they should be careful not to
"bore" them by over-attention, which savors of fussiness. A guest
will often under such circumstances long for a lonely hour to
devote to music, reading, or sewing, but does not like to express
the desire.

The truest courtesy is for the host to make his visitor feel as
much at home as possible, and for the visitor to disturb the
host's household as little as possible.

Where a lady is visiting, she may with perfect propriety offer to
assist her hostess in her household duties or family sewing; but
if she declines, it is bad taste to insist. She should, however,
leave her hostess free for such duties in the morning, being
always ready to join her in the sitting-room when she is at

It is a graceful way to acknowledge the kindness of your hostess
to work whilst with her upon some piece of embroidery, a
pianocover, a sofa-cushion, or some article of dress, which you
present to her when finished as a memento of your visit.

For a guest to make outside engagements, disregard the meal times,
visit without consulting the host or hostess, is to treat the
house of a friend as if it were a hotel, and is not only rude, but
positively insulting.

It is best, if you are visiting a large city, and desire to do
shopping or to transact business, to select the hours when you
know your entertainers are otherwise engaged for such business,
and not tax them to accompany you, unless they have similar
affairs requiring attention, when it may be pleasanter to have

Neither hostess nor guest may accept any invitations which do not
include the other.

If either hostess or visitor is in mourning, the other must
decline all invitations during the visit, giving that as a reason.
It is always accepted in society as sufficient excuse.

If any sudden trouble comes into a house where you are visiting,
try to be of service. Let your friend feel that you have not
visited her for gayety alone, but are glad to sympathize in her
trouble. If sickness or death come, share the nursing, try to
relieve the hostess of some of her family cares, if it is only
taking the children into your own room or out for a walk; be ready
to do the shopping required for mourning, and take away every
painful detail you can. There is no comfort so great as a really
useful sympathizing friend in times of trouble; yet if relatives
come and require rooms, if you find you are a restraint and can be
of no use, it is the truest kindness to shorten your visit, and
leave the mourners free to comfort each other.

When visiting, never depend upon your host for writing or sewing
materials; but it is a delicate attention for you, if hostess, to
have your guest's room amply supplied with both.

It is extremely rude for visitors to make comparisons between the
house at which they are visiting and others where they have
enjoyed hospitality. To inform your hostess indirectly that her
house, furniture, table, or servants are inferior to those of
other friends, is insulting, and it is as much so to cast the slur
upon the first house visited by vaunting the superiority of the

To a certain extent, use your friend's servants as your own wholly
so as far as your own personal wants require their services. Ask
for whatever you want in your own room, and give any requisite
directions to the servant who waits upon you. Do not trouble the
mistress of the house with matters which in your own house you
would give to a servant. At the same time, avoid being
troublesome; put out your own washing, and any extra work you
require done, and never call upon the servants at hours when they
are otherwise employed.

If you are unfortunate enough during a visit to injure any article
of furniture in your own room, have it repaired or replaced at
once at your own expense.

It is a graceful compliment for a gentleman during a visit to
bring flowers, fruit, books, or confectionery occasionally to the
hostess, and a lady friend will be gratefully remembered if she is
kind to the children.

If a gift is made, it must be to the hostess, or if there are
several children, to the youngest. If children are over twelve years
old, it is better to give any present to the mother; but you will
never give offence by a gift to the baby. A gentleman may give baby
jewelry, and a lady a piece of handsome needlework. You may be sure
the parents will find no fault with this acknowledgment of their

Always hold yourself at the disposal of those in whose house you
are staying. If they propose to ride, drive, walk, or other wise
occupy the day, you must take it for granted that these plans are
made with reference to your enjoyment. You should receive them
with cheerfulness and enter into them with alacrity, doing your
best to seem pleased, and be pleased, by the efforts made to
entertain you. Never mind if it is the twentieth time you have
driven to "see the lovely view from the hill four miles from
here," or you have paid a dozen previous visits to "that beautiful
waterfall just above the lake;" you must find a new tree to
admire, or a new point to sketch every time you go.

It is not expected that the host or hostess can devote the entire
day to guests. Sir Walter Scott's conduct towards his guests at
Abbotsford furnishes a model of hospitality. He never saw them
till dinner; but whilst he was busily engaged in writing, he left
his house, servants, carriages, horses, and grounds at their
entire disposal.

Byron gives a perfect picture of guest life at a country house:

"The gentlemen got up betimes to shoot,
Or hunt; the young, because they liked the sport
The first thing boys like, after play and fruit;
The middle-aged, to make the day more short;
For ennui is a growth of English root,
Though nameless in our language-we retort
The fact for words, and let the French translate
That awful yawn which sleep cannot abate.

"The elderly walked through the library,
And tumbled books, or criticized the pictures,
Or sauntered through the garden piteously,
 And made upon the hot-house several strictures;
Or rode a nag which trotted not too high,
 Or in the morning papers read their lectures;
Or on the watch their longing eyes would fix,
Longing at sixty for the hour of six."

"But none were 'gene;' the great hour of union
Was rung by dinner's knell! till then all were
Masters of their own time-or in communion,
Or solitary, as they chose to bear
The hours,-which how to pass to few is known.
Each rose up at his own, and had to spare
What time he chose for dress, and broke his fast
When, where, and how he chose for that repast."'

In this country, hospitality is but seldom conducted on the lavish
broad scale possible at an English country residence; but, as far
as possible, it is better to allow guests perfect liberty for
breakfast hour and morning employments.

Great discretion must be used among guests to avoid all criticism
on their host, his friends, his household, his manner of living,
and all that concerns him. If anything goes wrong during the
visit, one should seem not to see it. If the dinner is late, it is
very impolite to appear impatient. If any plan falls to the
ground, no comments or disapproval must be indulged in, and no
disappointment betrayed. If the children of the house are
fractious, or noisy, or ill-bred, a visitor must never find fault
with their behavior.

The same caution must be exercised in the treatment of your
friend's friends. They may be such as you do not care to become
intimate with; but you must not evince dislike or special
avoidance, and must always have recourse rather to a negative than
a positive line of conduct. A person of tact can always keep
people at a distance without hurting their feelings.

Your host's horses, carriages, books, and grounds should be even
more carefully used than if they were your own. A goodnatured man
will delight in seeing his visitors enjoy all the good things he
places at their disposal; but they should not abuse his
indulgence. To ride a horse too far or too fast, to dog's-ear or
blot the books in the library, to gather choice and favorite
flowers, are all signs of an under-bred and selfish nature. Above
all, we should be thoughtful in our treatment of the servants,
never commenting upon their shortcomings, or scolding them.

The religious opinions, especially of those from whom we are
receiving hospitality, must on no account be shocked, scoffed at,
or in any way treated with a want of respect. If our friends go
regularly to church, we should accompany them there; or, without
remark, repair to the place of worship most agreeable to our own
religious convictions. If family prayers are read, we should
endeavor to be present. If silent grace is the custom at meal
times, our heads must also bow, and a short mental prayer be said.
If the Sunday is observed with great strictness, we should refrain
from any pursuits to which objection could possibly be made, even
if they appear to ourselves perfectly proper and innocent. In
short, we must remember that for the time the feelings and
prejudices of the host and hostess are our own.

There is no occasion when it is more necessary to remember that
social intercourse is made up of innumerable little acts of
kindness, self-denial, charity, chivalry, and good-fellowship,
than when a number of people find themselves thrown together for
companionship in the house of some mutual friend.

Letters delivered in the presence of the host or hostess, or when
the other guests are present, must not be opened until the
receiver asks permission to read them.

A lady may never offer to pay any of the expenses incurred by
taking her about--carriage hire, steamboat fares, or such outlay
nor must a gentleman do so unless he is the only gentleman of the
party. It will then be well for the hostess, before starting, to
hand him the necessary tickets previously purchased.

When a guest is ready to leave you, be sure that the trunks are
strapped and ticketed, a carriage ready in good season, a luncheon
prepared for refreshment upon the journey, a substantial meal
ready in good season for comfortable enjoyment of it, and the
departure made as pleasant as possible.

"Welcome the coming, speed the parting guest." It is the first
duty of the guest, after returning home, to write to the host or
hostess, expressing the pleasure derived from the visit, and
mentioning each member of the family by name, desiring to be
remembered to all.


WHEN a gentleman recognizes a friend in the course of his walk, he
must lift his hat with the hand farthest from him. Lifting the hat
is a sufficient recognition between gentlemen; but in meeting a
lady, an old gentleman, or a clergyman, it is necessary to bow

If a gentleman wishes to shake hands with a friend, he must lift
his hat with the left hand, leaving the right free to extend.
Never must he give his left hand, or extend a portion of the
right. The whole right hand is _en regle_.

A lady must recognize a gentleman, by bowing, before he is at
liberty to acknowledge an acquaintance with her. Should she bow,
he must lift his hat and bow also. If he is sufficiently barbarous
to have a cigar in his mouth, he must remove it while bowing to a

If a gentleman is walking with a lady, he should insist upon
carrying any book, parcel, or umbrella she may have with her.

No gentleman may smoke when walking with a lady. He should even
decline to do so though he may be asked to continue smoking.

Should a lady stop a gentleman to speak, she must make a slight
inclination of the head as a token of dismissal, and he must
accept it as such, bow, and leave her.

No lady will be guilty of the vulgarity of sucking the head of her
parasol in the street.

To eat anything, even confectionery, in the street, is a sign of
low breeding.

A gentleman must give a lady, an old gentleman, or clergyman with
whom he may be walking, the upper side (nearest the houses) of the

If a gentleman meets a lady friend who is walking with any one he
does not know, he must not stop, nor must he stop if his companion
is unacquainted with a lady friend whom he may chance to meet. The
lady, however, has a perfect right to do as she likes. If she
should stop, the strangers must be introduced, and none of the
group should go on and wait, whether the introduction be agreeable
or not.

A lady should avoid walking very rapidly. It is very ungraceful
and unbecoming.

Swinging the arms is an awkward and ill-bred habit.

For a lady to run across the street, to avoid a carriage passing,
is not only ill-bred, but exceedingly dangerous.

To attempt to cross the street between the carriages of a funeral
procession is rude and disrespectful; and we cannot but commend
the foreign custom of removing the hat, and standing in a
respectful attitude until the melancholy train has passed.

When a gentleman is walking alone, he must always turn aside to
give the upper side of the pavement to a lady, to any one carrying
a heavy load, to a clergyman, or to an old gentleman.

Never push violently through a crowd. If a gentleman or lady is
really in haste, a few courteous words will open a passage more
quickly than the most vigorous pushing or shoving.

If a lady is caught in a shower, and a gentleman offers an
umbrella, she may accept it, if he is going in the same direction
as herself and accompanies her. If not, and he still insists,
etiquette requires the return of the umbrella as soon as the lady
reaches her destination. No lady may accept this courtesy from a
strange gentleman, but must decline it firmly, but politely.

Stopping to stare in the shop-windows is against the rules of
strict etiquette.

If a gentleman and lady are obliged to cross a narrow walk, plank,
or slippery place, the lady may go first, and the gentleman walk
close behind her, to aid her if needful. If the place is short,
then the gentleman should go first, and then offer his hand to
assist the lady across. If a gentleman meet a lady or old
gentleman at such a crossing, he may, with perfect propriety,
assist them in crossing, even if perfect strangers to him.

A gentleman must hold his hat in his hand if he stops to inquire
his own way, or to direct another.

If a gentleman sees a lady alone hesitating at a bad crossing, or
leaving a carriage at an awkward place, he may offer his hand to
assist her in crossing or alighting, raise his hat, bow, and pass
on. A lady may, with perfect propriety, accept such assistance
from a stranger, thanking him, and returning his bow.

If a lady leaves an omnibus or car alone, the gentleman nearest
the door should alight, assist her out, and enter the omnibus

Gentlemen should always pass up the fare of ladies in an omnibus.

A lady is not expected to recognize any acquaintance on the
opposite side of the street.

In a public conveyance, a gentleman should offer his seat to any
lady who is standing, and the lady should thank him audibly for
the courtesy. To turn his back upon her at once, and thus force
her to accept the courtesy in silence or shout her thanks, is
rude. A polite bow exchanged is a sufficient acknowledgment.

Loud talking and laughing in the street are sure signs of

Never look back after any one passing; it is extremely ill-bred.

Staring is a mark of low breeding.

Whispering in a public conveyance is excessively rude.

Never call out loudly to an acquaintance who may be passing.

"Cutting" is to be avoided, if possible. There are other ways of
convincing a man that you will not know him; yet, to young ladies,
it is sometimes the only means available to rid them of a
troublesome acquaintance. Cutting consists in publicly ignoring,
by deed, and, if need be, by word, the acquaintance of the
offensive person. A stiff bow will usually effect the desired
object; if not, a purposed non-recognition will probably succeed.
It must be a very bad case where it is necessary to tell one you
"have not the pleasure of an acquaintance" with them. A gentleman
must never under any circumstances, cut a lady; an unmarried lady
may not cut a married one, nor a young man an old one.

George IV., when Prince of Wales, once cut Beau Brummell, with
whom he had quarrelled. The pair met in St. James-street, each
walking with a companion; the companions stopped to speak, but the
Prince did not see Brummell. The latter, to be revenged, and
knowing the horror the Prince had of being considered corpulent,
said to his companion, in a stage whisper, before the others were
out of ear-shot, "Who is your fat friend?"

On meeting and passing people in the street, keep to your right
hand, except when giving the upper side of the pavement as before

Let a lady walking with a gentleman have always the upper side of
the pavement, even if he changes sides at every turning.

Young persons, meeting elderly friends in the street, should wait
for a recognition before speaking, and then bow respectfully. To
nod carelessly at an old person is rude, if not actually

If you meet two gentlemen in the street, and wish to speak to one
of them, apologize to the other, and make the detention as brief
as possible.

If a gentleman is about to enter or to leave a store, and meets a
lady in the door-way, he must stand aside, raise his hat, and wait
for her to pass. If the door is closed, and she is going the same
way as himself, he must pass before her, bow, saying, "Permit me,"
or "allow me to open the door," open it, and hold it open until
she has passed.

A gentleman walking with a lady should endeavor to accommodate his
steps to hers, not force her to stride along or trot with short
steps or his long ones.

Etiquette is too often disregarded in that grand aim of most
ladies' excursions on the street--shopping. True politeness will
lead a lady to pay some attention to the feelings of the clerks
and women in attendance, and they are quick to observe who are
ladylike, and who are not, in their intercourse with them.

Do not enter a store unless you have some errand.

Ask for what you want as explicitly as possible, and do not take
the time of the attendants by examining fifty things that you do
not want.

If you do not intend to purchase goods, but wish to examine them
for future selections, say so.

Never try to cheapen goods. If the price is too high for the
quality offered, or will not suit your purse, look elsewhere for
what will better suit you.

Do not stand hesitating at a counter. Make up your mind quickly,
or leave the store to make your decision, even if you return

Be careful not to injure goods by handling.

Never ask for patterns without apologizing for the trouble, and
not then unless you really intend to return for the goods, as when
you are shopping for a friend, or wish for the judgment or taste
of another person.

Never give unnecessary trouble.

It is best to have all bundles sent home; they are awkward
additions to a walking-dress, and boys are kept for that purpose
in all well-arranged stores.

Never keep a clerk waiting while you chat with a friend. If you
desire to speak with your acquaintances, stand aside, that the
clerk may understand he is released for the time, and free to wait
upon other customers.

Never call away a clerk who is waiting upon some one else. Wait,
if you have business with an especial clerk, until you see that he
is disengaged.

Sneering remarks upon goods is rude in the extreme. If they do not
suit you, you are not obliged to buy them; but spare your

Lounging over a counter is ill-bred.

Putting your elbows on a counter is rude.

Pushing aside another person is an act of ill-breeding.

You must never take hold of a piece of goods another person is
examining. Wait until it is replaced upon the counter, when you
are at liberty to take it up.

Stage asides or whispering in a store are rude.

It is rude to interrupt friends you may meet in a store, to ask
their attention to your purchases, before they have finished
making their own. It is as rude to offer your opinion, unasked,
upon their judgment or taste in selection of goods.

A gentleman walking with two ladies may offer an arm to each of
them, and they may thus sandwich him if they wish; but under no
circumstances may a lady take the arms of gentlemen at each side
of her.

If a gentleman is walking with two ladies in a rain-storm, and
there is but one umbrella, he should give it to his companions and
walk outside. Nothing can be more absurd than to see a gentleman
walking between two ladies holding an umbrella, which perfectly
protects himself, and sends little streams of water from every
point on the dresses of the ladies he is supposed to be

It is in bad taste to talk of personal matters in the street, or
to call loudly the names of persons you may mention. It is
impossible to say who may be near to you. To discuss friends by
name in a public conveyance of any kind is rude in the extreme.

If you meet a friend with whom you wish to shake hands, never put
out your own until you are quite near, as nothing looks more
awkward than hands extended to grasp each other two or three yards

Never turn a corner at full speed, or you may find yourself
knocked down or knocking down another by the violent contact.

Never bow from a store to a person on the street, or from the
street to a person in a store.

Never talk politics or religion in a public conveyance.

Never stop to quarrel with a hack-driver. Pay his fare, and
dismiss him; if you have any complaint to make, take his number,
and make it to the proper authorities. To keep a lady standing
while you are disputing with a hack-man is extremely rude.

It is a sign of ill-breeding to change your seat in a car or
omnibus. If you are unfortunate enough to have a neighbor who is
positively annoying and unendurable, it is better to get out and
take the next conveyance than to move to the other side. A
gentleman may move from a crowded side to one left comparatively
vacant; but a lady should not do this.

In a city, or in any lonely place, a lady must avoid being alone
after nightfall, if possible. It exposes her, not only to insult,
but often to positive danger. It is very much the custom in small
country places for two ladies to take evening walks; but it is
better to have the protection of a gentleman if convenient.

It is better for a lady to decline entering a car or an omnibus
that is already full. She must either stand up or force some
polite gentleman to do so. It is better to wait for the next


THE rule of the road, both in riding and driving, is always to
"Keep to the right, as the law directs."

In inviting a lady to ride, if a gentleman cannot offer the use of
his own horses, or the lady does not name a horse to which she has
been accustomed, he must be careful to select one of proved
gentleness, and trained to the side-saddle and riding-skirt. It is
exceedingly dangerous to allow a lady to mount a horse which may
be entirely strange to a lady's hand or habit; and it is not well
to trust this important matter to a livery-stable keeper or

A gentleman must be punctual to the appointed time, as it is
disagreeable for a lady to sit waiting in-doors in a riding-habit.
The lady, too, must exercise strict punctuality, that the horses
may not become restive from long standing.

Arrived at the house of his fair companion, the gentleman must
carefully examine the entire furniture of her horse. He must test
the firmness of the saddle and girths, examine well the stirrup
leather, guard against the danger of any buckle allowing a tongue
of leather to slip, see that the curb, bridle, headstall, and
reins are in perfect order; for the entire control of the horse is
lost if one of these breaks or slips. Leaving these matters to the
stable-men entirely is unsafe, as the constant handling of the
harness is apt to make them careless in fastening and testing it.

It is the duty of the gentleman to see the lady comfortably seated
in the saddle before he mounts himself. Having first asked
permission, he leads her to the horse. A groom should not be
allowed to render any assistance, if a gentleman is present,
except ing to hold the horse's head. The lady stands, with her
skirt gathered in her left hand, on the near side of the horse,
her right hand on the pommel of the saddle, and her face turned
towards the horse's head, The gentleman should stand at the
horse's shoulder, facing the lady, and stoop so that her left foot
may rest in his hand. When the lady makes a spring, the gentleman
should, with gentle firmness, steadily and promptly help her foot
up; and when she is in the saddle, he should put her foot in the
stirrup, and smooth her skirt. It requires some practice to
properly assist a lady into the saddle. If the hand is not
perfectly steady, it is very unpleasant, and any jerking motion is
not only disagreeable, but positively dangerous.

After the lady is in the saddle, her escort should stand beside
her until she has arranged her skirt, got a firm foothold in the
stirrup, and has her reins and whip in order. He may then mount
his own horse, and take his position on the lady's right.

In riding with two ladies, if both are good horsewomen, the
gentleman should ride to the right of both; but if they are
inexperienced, it is better for him to ride between them, to be
ready to assist them if necessary.

A lady must always give the pace.

A gentleman must never touch a lady's horse unless she actually
requires his aid; but he should be very watchful and ready for the
most prompt attention if it is needed.

If a gentleman on horseback meet a lady who is walking, and stops
to speak to her, he must dismount until she bows and leaves him.

A gentleman must go forward whenever a gate is to be opened or an
obstruction to be removed, and clear the way for the lady; he must
leap first when there is a fence or ditch to be crossed; he must
pay all tolls; must first test any dangerous-looking place, and
must try to select the most desirable roads.

In dismounting, a gentleman must offer a lady his right hand,
taking her left, and using his own left as a step for her foot,
declining it gently as soon as she rises from the saddle, and
before she springs. To spring from the saddle is not only awkward,
but dangerous, and will often confuse a gentleman who is
accustomed only to the proper mode of assisting the ladies to whom
he offers his services as escort.

No gentlemen will force a lady to ride faster than, she may find
agreeable, by an endeavor to display his own horsemanship.

A gentleman must be careful to protect his lady companion from the
dust and mud, as far as possible; and if there is a choice of side
for shade, he may, with propriety, ride upon her left, or fall a
little behind her, to allow her to take advantage of it.

In riding with an elderly gentlemen, a younger man should extend
all the courtesies of the road, the shady side, the choice of
speed, the choice also of direction, and, if there be a
difference, the best horse.

In a carriage, where a coachman is outside, the seat on the right
hand, facing the horses, is the seat of honor, and should be given
to a lady, an elderly gentleman, or the guest.

In entering a carriage, be careful that your back is towards the
scat you wish to occupy.

The seat facing the horses is always left by gentleman for ladies.
If a lady and gentleman alone enter a carriage together, the
gentleman must take the seat opposite to the lady, unless she
invites him to sit beside her.

A gentleman be should careful, in entering a carriage, not to
trample upon ladies' dresses, shut their shawls in the door, or
commit any other gaucheries. It is quite an art to enter or leave
a carriage gracefully.

In quitting a carriage, a gentleman must go first, even though he
may have to trouble the ladies by stepping across the carriage,
and he should then help the ladies to alight, taking care not to
allow the wheel to soil their dresses. If there be a man-servant
with the carriage, a gentleman will allow him to lower the steps,
and hold the door open; but he must on no account allow him to
help the ladies out while he himself stands by.

A gentleman will always convey the orders of the ladies to the

If the carriage is driven by the gentleman himself, there are many
little points of etiquette which demand attention.

When a gentleman is about to take a lady, an older gentleman, or a
guest to drive, he must drive as close as possible to the mounting
block or curb, head his horse towards the middle of the road, and
back his buggy or wagon slightly, separating the fore and hind
wheels as much as possible. This is especially necessary when a
lady is to ascend to the wagon, as it gives space for her dress to
avoid the contact of the wheels, and allows room for the driver to
tuck her dress in after she is seated. It is best to have always a
carriage-blanket to cover entirely the skirt of a lady's dress,
that the mud of the road may not splash it.

When there is a post, it is always safest to hitch the horse
securely, and give both hands to the lady's service. Never allow
the horse to stand without some hold upon him; if there is no
post, the reins must be held firmly in one hand, while the other
assists the lady.

No gentleman will _show off_ his driving, if he finds his
companion timid. He will adopt the pace most agreeable to her,
even if it condemns him to a funeral slowness.

It is courtesy for the owner of a wagon, when driving a gentleman
friend, to offer him the reins, but the offer should never be
accepted. If, when driving a long distance, with a hard-mouthed
horse, the companion can really relieve a tired driver, it is then
both courteous and kind to offer to take the reins for a time; but
it is not etiquette so to offer under any other circumstances.

If you offer a seat in a private carriage to any friends you may
meet whilst abroad, you must accompany them to their destination,
no matter how far it may be out of your own way.

For a gentleman, when driving with a lady, to put his arm across
the back of the seat, around her, is a piece of impertinence which
any well-bred lady will very justly resent.

If offered a seat in the carriage of a gentleman friend, you
should motion him to be seated first; but if he stands aside for
you, bow, and precede him.

After assisting a lady to her seat, be certain that her parasol,
shawl, and fan are all conveniently placed for her use before you
take your own seat. Allow her all the space you can, and be
especially careful that the motion of your arms does not incommode

If a lady wishes to leave a carriage, and the gentleman remains in
it to wait her return, he must alight to assist her out, and also
when she enters it again, even if he resumes his seat during her

It is a graceful act to leave a carriage in the proper manner. In
England, young ladies are instructed in the manner of entering and
leaving a carriage. M. Mercy D'Argenteau, an ambassador of the
last century, tells an anecdote illustrative of the importance of
this. He says: "The Princess of Hesse-Darmstadt having been
desired by the Empress of Austria to bring her three daughters to
court, in order that her Imperial Majesty might choose one of them
for a wife to one of her sons, drove up in her coach to the palace

"Scarcely had they entered the presence, when, before even
speaking to them, the Empress went up to the second daughter, and,
taking her by the hand, said: 'I choose this young lady.'

"The mother, astonished at the suddenness of her choice, inquired
what had actuated her.

"'I watched the young ladies get out of their carriage,' said the
Empress. 'Your eldest daughter stepped on her dress, and only
saved herself from falling by an awkward scramble; the youngest
jumped from the coach to the ground, without touching the steps;
the second, just lifting her dress in front, so as she descended
to show the point of her shoe, calmly stepped from the carriage to
the ground, neither hurriedly nor stiffly, but with grace and
dignity. She is fit to be an empress. Her eldest sister is too
awkward; her youngest, too wild.'"

Riding and driving are accomplishments in which it is very
desirable for all ladies and gentlemen to be proficient. To ride
well, one must be taught early, and have practice. Like swimming,
riding cannot be learned from theoretical teaching.

Lord Herbert, of Cherbury, says: "A good rider, on a good horse,
is as much above himself and others as the world can make him."


THERE are many little points of etiquette and courteous
observances which, if attended to, serve very materially to
lighten the tedium and fatigue of travel, the non-observance of
them being at tended with proportionally disagreeable effects. No
situation can be named where the difference between the well-bred
and ill-bred of either sex is more marked than when they are upon
a journey; and in this country, where all classes are thrown into
contact in the various public conveyances, the annoyance of rude
company can scarcely be exaggerated.

The duties of an escort to a lady are manifold and various, and
the true lady will make them as light as possible, striving, by
her own deportment and agreeable conversation, to compensate her
gentleman friend for the trouble she may occasion him. To weary
him constantly by complaints of the heat, dust, or flies; to worry
for half an hour over some unavoidable mishap or annoyance; to
lose or miss some part of her hand-baggage every five minutes;
forcing him to rise and search for what she eventually finds in
her own pocket; to inquire every few moments, "Where are we now?
what time is it? are we nearly at our journey's end?" to delay
him, when the train or boat does stop, for arrangements that
should have been made ten minutes before; to fidget about her
baggage; or to find constant fault with what he cannot control,
are all faults in which lady travellers are prone to indulge, but
which all mark low breeding, founded upon intense selfishness.
Good-nature, perfect courtesy, patience, punctuality, and an easy
adaptation to perhaps untoward circumstances mark the perfect lady
in travelling. When you see a lady, detained perhaps for hours by
a snow-storm, pleasantly trying to beguile the time by
conversation, relieving tired mothers, perhaps, of the care of
fretful children, jesting pleasantly upon the unpleasant delay,
and uttering no complaint or impatient word, even if half frozen
or in utter discomfort, you may be certain you see a perfectly
well-bred lady in every sense of the words.

No lady should ever allow her escort to enter with her any saloon
devoted exclusively to the use of ladies. Because he may be her
own husband, son, father, or brother does not excuse her, as he
cannot stand in such relation to others present.

If a lady in a car or stage finds the exertion of talking tiresome
or painful, she may say so frankly, and no gentleman must take
offence. Weak lungs may be really injured by the effort made to be
heard above the noise of a locomotive or wheels.

In travelling alone, a lady should speak to the conductor on a
train, or, in a long steamer passage, introduce herself to the
captain, explaining her unprotected situation, and they are bound
to extend every courtesy in their power. It is better for a lady
so travelling to wait until the rush of passengers is over before
quitting a train or boat, and then, if not waiting to meet any
one, leave the station.

A lady travelling alone may, with perfect propriety, accept
courtesy from strange gentlemen, such as raising or lowering a
window, the offer of a hand across a slippery plank, or any such
attention, being careful always to thank him politely for the
same, and in a tone that will not encourage conversation or
further advances.

Any apology made during a journey for accidental crushing,
crowding, reaching over the seat, or the like, must be accepted, a
silent but courteous bow being the best acknowledgment of the
politeness dictating such apology.

A gentleman, on entering a public carriage or omnibus, must never
step before a lady, but stand aside until she enters, raising the
hat slightly if she acknowledges his courtesy, as a true lady
will, by a bow. He may offer to assist her if she appears to need
it, even if she is a perfect stranger to him.

If a gentleman consents to act as escort to a lady, he must
carefully fulfill all the requirements of that rather arduous
position. If she meets him at a wharf or depot, he must be a
little before the hour for starting, to procure her ticket, check
her baggage, and secure for her a pleasant seat. He must never
leave her to stand in an office or upon a wharf whilst he attends
to her tickets and baggage; but, having seen her comfortably
seated in a ladies' room or cabin, return for those duties. In
arriving at a station, he must see her seated in a hack before he
attends to the trunks.

In a hotel, the gentleman must escort the lady to the parlor
before securing her room, but not detain her afterwards. However
agreeable she may be, he may be certain she is longing to rest
after her journey, and remove the travel stains from her face and
dress. He must at once escort her to her room, ascertain what
hour it will be agreeable for her take the next meal, and meet her
again in the parlor at that hour. He must not leave her upon
arriving at the journey's end until he has escorted her to the
house, and if he remains in the city, he must call the next day to
inquire after her health. After that, the lady may continue the
acquaintance or not, as she pleases; but if she declines to do so,
by nonrecognition at the next meeting, he is at liberty to decline
acting in the capacity of escort to her again.

A gentleman who is travelling alone may offer little courtesies to
strangers, and even to ladies, carefully maintaining a respectful
manner, that may assure them they need not fear to encourage
impertinence by accepting the proferred civilities.

In travelling abroad, the truest courtesy is to observe as far as
practicable every national prejudice. The old proverb, to "do in
Rome as Romans do," is the best rule of etiquette in foreign
travel. The man who affects a supercilious disdain for all foreign
customs and forms will not convince the natives of his vast
superiority, but impress them with the belief that he is an ill-
bred idiot. The most polite, as well as agreeable travellers are
those who will smilingly devour mouse-pie and bird's-nest soup in
China, dine contentedly upon horse-steak in Paris, swallow their
beef uncooked in Germany, maintain an unwinking gravity over the
hottest curry in India, smoke their hookah gratefully in Turkey,
mount an elephant in Ceylon, and, in short, conform gracefully to
any native custom, however strange it may appear to him.

"Comparisons are odious," and to be continually asserting that
everything in the United States is vastly superior to everything
abroad is a mark of vulgarity. If you really think there is
nothing to be seen abroad as good as you have at home, why, you
are foolish not to stay at home and enjoy the best.

A lady may, under certain circumstances, as, if she be a married
lady, and not too young, begin a conversation with a strange
gentlemen; but he must not, under any circumstances, begin a
conversation with her. An unmarried lady, unless advanced in life,
is not supposed to begin conversation with a strange gentleman.

When a lady, travelling alone, wishes to descend from a railway
car, it is the duty of the gentleman nearest the door to assist
her in alighting, even if he resumes his seat again. He may offer
to collect her baggage, call a hack, or perform any service her
escort would have attended to.

If a train stop for refreshments, a gentleman may, with perfect
propriety, offer to escort a strange lady, who is alone, to the
refreshment-room, or to bring to her any refreshments she may
desire. If she accepts his offer, he must see that she is served
with all that she desires before attending to his own wants. A
lady may always accept such an offer of attention, thanking the
gentleman for his politeness, and dismissing him by a courteous
bow, which he must accept as an intimation that his services are
no longer required.

Smoking in the presence of ladies is uncourteous, even if there is
no law against it in the car, stage, or boat. Some smokers, of
more inveterate weakness in the direction of tobacco than of
strength in politeness, make a parade of asking the permission of
any lady who may be present; but this is hardly enough. A lady
will not like to refuse, although she may dislike the smoke, and
she ought not to be put to her election between two alternatives
almost equally disagreeable. If gentlemen only are present, the
question should be put to each and every one of them whether they
have any objection to smoking in their presence. One dissentient
voice should carry the day; for no gentleman has a right to insist
upon his own special gratification if it will cause annoyance and
discomfort to others present. Should there be no objection on the
part of the entire party, the gentleman who first strikes his
fusee should offer it to any others near him about to indulge also
before he uses it himself.

As regards the right to have the window up or down, the person who
sits facing the the engine has the command. Ladies, being present,
should, of course, be consulted, no matter on which side they may
be sitting, and their wish must be considered a final settlement
of the question.

If a gentleman have any newspapers, he must offer them first to
his travelling companions. If refused, he may use them himself,
thus leaving them free to read also if they so desire.


IN visiting a church in which you have no pew of your own, wait in
the vestibule until the sexton comes to you, and request him to
show you to a seat. It is extremely rude to enter a pew without
invitation if it is partially filled, or without permission if it
is empty.

Always enter a church slowly and reverentially. A gentleman must
remove his hat at the door, and never replace it until he is again
in the vestibule.

Conform strictly to the forms of worship. If you are not familiar
with them, rise, kneel, and sit as you see others do.

Never whisper to a companion in church.

Never make any noise with your feet or fingers.

Never stare round the building.

Never bow to any friend while in the church itself. Greetings may
be exchanged in the vestibule after service.

A gentleman accompanying a lady to a Roman Catholic church, even
if himself a Protestant, may offer her the holy water, and it must
be with an ungloved hand.

Gentlemen must pass up the aisle beside their lady companions
until they reach the pew, then advance a few steps, open the door,
and stand aside until she has entered, then enter, and close the
door again. It is a bad plan to leave the hat outside, as it is
liable to be swept down the aisle by the skirts of ladies passing.
If there is not room for it on the seat, it can be put upon the
floor inside the pew.

Never pay any attention to those around you, even if they are
noisy or rude.

If you pass a book or a fan to a person in the same pew, or accept
the same attention, it is not necessary to speak. A silent bow is
all that etiquette requires.

If you have room in your own pew, and sea a stranger enter, open
the door and motion him to enter. It is not necessary to speak.

You may find the place and point it out to a stranger, who is
unfamiliar with the service; but do so silently.

A lady should never remove her gloves in church, unless to use the
holy water, or the right-hand glove at communion.

To come late to church is not only ill-bred, but disrespectful. It
is equally so to hurry away, or to commence preparations for
departure, closing and putting away the books, and such
preparations, before the service closes.

Never keep any one waiting if you are invited or have invited them
to go to church.

When visiting a church abroad, not to attend divine service, but
to see the edifice, choose an hour when there is no service. If
you find worshippers, however, are present, move quietly, speak
low, and endeavor not to disturb their devotions.

The godmother at a christening must accompany the family of her
little godchild to and from the church, and should send her gift
(usually a silver cup) the day before.

In attending a funeral not in your own family, never leave the pew
until the mourners have passed into the aisle; but rise and stand
while they pass, falling into your proper place as the procession
passes you.

It is ill-bred for gentlemen to congregate in the vestibule of a
church and there chat familiarly, often commenting audibly upon
the service or the congregation. No true lady likes to run this
gauntlet, although in this country they are too often obliged to
do so.

To show any disrespect to a form of worship that may be new or
strange to you is rude in the extreme. If you find it trying to
your own religious convictions, you need not again visit churches
of the same denomination; but to sneer at a form, while in the
church using that form, is insulting and low-bred.


A GENTLEMAN who wishes to invite a young lady, who is not related
to him, to visit any place of public amusement with him, must, the
first time that he invites her, also invite another lady of the
same family to accompany her. No young lady should visit public
places of amusement with a gentleman with whom she is but slightly
acquainted, alone.

It is a gentleman's duty to invite a lady long enough before the
evening of the performance to be certain of securing pleasant
seats, as it is but a poor compliment to take her where she will
be uncomfortable, or where she can neither hear nor see.

Although a carriage may not be necessary on account of the
weather, it is a more elegant way of paying attention to a lady to
provide one.

Never assume an air of secrecy or mystery in a public place; and
even if you have the right to do so, assume no lover-like airs. It
is rude to converse loudly, especially during the performance; but
a low tone is all that is necessary; not a whisper.

To appear to comment aside upon those near you is extremely ill-

A lady is not expected to bow to a friend across a theatre or
concert-room; but a gentleman may recognize his lady friends.

A lady must answer a note of invitation to visit a place of public
amusement as soon as possible, as, by delay, she may keep her
gentleman friend in doubt, and deprive him of the pleasure of
inviting another friend if she declines.

It is ill-bred to arrive late at any public entertainment, and
looks as if you were not sufficiently master of your own time to
be punctual.

In a theatre, give your attention entirely to the stage when the
curtain is up; to your companion when it is down.

It looks badly to see a lady staring round the house with an
opera-glass. Never is a modest dignity more becoming than in a
theatre. To indulge in extravagant gesture, laugh boisterously,
flirt a fan conspicuously, toy with an eye-glass or opera-glass,
indulge in lounging attitudes, whisper aside, are all unlady-like
in the extreme.

If you speak to your companion during the performance, do so in a
low tone, that you may not disturb those who are near you, and
wish to hear the actors.

In entering a concert-room or tile box of a theatre, a gentleman
should precede a lady, if there is not room to walk beside her,
until they reach the seats, then hand her to the inner one, taking
the outside one himself. In going out, if he cannot offer her his
arm, he must again walk before her, until he reaches the lobby,
and then offer her his arm.

Boisterous applause and loud laughter are ungentlemanly.

It is in bad taste to distract your companion's interest from the
performance, even if you find it dull yourself.

No gentleman should leave a lady alone for a moment in a public
place of amusement. He may subject her to annoyance, or he may
find another lady in his seat when he returns, which would
separate him from his companion until the close of the
performance; for, although a gentleman when alone should offer his
seat to a lady or old gentleman who cannot procure one, he is not
expected to do so when escorting a lady. His place is then that of
protector to his charge, and he must not relinquish it for a

Secure a libretto, or programme, before taking your seat, that you
may not be obliged to rise to get one.

At the opera, conversation during the performance is in the worst
taste. The lowest tone will disturb the real lovers of music.
Exclamations of "Lovely!" "Exquisite!" "How sweet!" and others,
are all proofs of vulgarity.

If you promenade at a concert or between the acts at a theatre,
you may bow to friends the first time you pass them only. A lady
must not allow other gentlemen to join her, if she would not
offend her escort, and no gentleman will stop a lady to speak to
her. A conversation of a moment or two is all that is allowable in
such meetings.

If seats are secured, it is best to arrive about five minutes
before the commencement of a performance; but if a gentleman is
escorting a lady to an entertainment where seats cannot be
secured, he should call for her at an early hour, that she may get
a good place.

In a picture-gallery, never stand conversing before the paintings
in such a way as to interrupt the view of others. If you wish to
converse, stand aside or take seats and do so.

A gentleman alone may join lady friends for a few moments between
the acts at a theatre, or in the intermission at a concert, but
only for a few moments, as their escort has a prior claim upon
their attention.

It is an act of rudeness to join any party about to visit a place
of amusement, or at one, unless urgently invited, and no one of
taste will ever form a third. If two or three ladies are in the
party and but one gentleman, another gentleman, if well
acquainted, may offer his services as escort to one of the ladies,
and if not allowed to share the expenses, should invite the party
to partake of refreshments after the performance is over.

Always enter a concert-hall or lecture-room as quietly as possible

Never push violently through a crowd at a public place. A lady
will always find room made for her if she requests it, or if it is
requested by her escort.

After escorting a lady to a place of amusement, a gentleman may
ask permission to call the following morning or evening, and the
lady must be at home to receive that call. She should take that
opportunity to thank him for the pleasure she has enjoyed, and
find some warm words of praise for the performance. To severely
criticize on such an occasion is rude to the escort, who has
intended to give pleasure, and the performance must be bad indeed
where nothing can be found to merit a word of praise.

In visiting a fancy fair, too many persons act as if they were in
a store, cheapening the articles offered for sale, and being
careless about their criticisms and remarks. It is impossible to
tell who may be wounded by such conduct. The very lady who offers
you an article you pronounce "absolutely hideous" may have spent
hours in its manufacture, and feel proportionately hurt at your
remarks. Courtesy and words of praise are never more appreciated
than by those who have spent weary hours in preparing for this
most troublesome of all charities.

On the other hand, the position of a lady at the table of a fancy
fair is necessarily an exposed one, and requires a great amount of
modest dignity to support it. Flirting, loud talking, importunate
entreaties to unwilling friends to buy your goods, are all in bad
taste; and it is equally bad to leave your place every few moments
to visit the refreshment-table in company with your gentlemen
friends. We heard a lady boast once that she had been seventeen
times in one day to the refreshment-table "for the good of the
fair," and we could not but think the cause might have been aided
without quite such a display of gastronomic energy. No true lady
will follow friends all around the room offering goods for sale,
nor force articles on reluctant purchasers by appealing to their

In entering a fancy fair where many ladies are present, strict
etiquette requires a gentleman to remove his hat, and carry it
whilst in the room, but it is a rule much neglected.

It is rude for a lady to take advantage of the rule which prevents
a gentleman from asking for change at a fair. If he says, in
presenting a larger amount than the purchased article calls for,
"Pray accept the balance for the object for which you are
working," she may, of course, place the gift in her cash-box;
otherwise it is more lady-like to give back the change.


IT would be difficult to express the sense of etiquette on this
subject better than by quoting Lord Chesterfield's words:

"I am more upon my guard," he writes, "as to my behavior to my
servants and to others who are called my inferiors than I am
towards my equals, for fear of being suspected of that mean and
ungenerous sentiment of desiring to make others feel that
difference which fortune has, and perhaps too undeservedly, made
between us."

Conduct towards servants should be always equal, never violent,
never familiar. Speak to them always with civility, but keep them
in their proper places.

Give no occasion for them to complain of you; but never suffer
yourself to complain of them without first ascertaining that your
complaint is just, seeing that it has attention, and that the
fault complained of is remedied.

Beware of giving servants the inch; there is no class so prone,
under such circumstances, to take the ell.

If staying in a friend's house, you may assume, to a certain
extent, that your friend's servants are your servants. But this
must be only so far as you are yourself concerned. You must not,
on any account, give directions respecting the general conduct of
the _menage_. For all your own personal wants, however, you are
free to command their services. Ask for anything, under their
control, that may be lacking in your own room; for whatever you
need at meal times; let them call you in the morning if you sleep
soundly; do not send them on errands, however, without first
ascertaining that it will not interfere with their regular routine
of household duty; but do anything and everything required for
your own personal convenience and comfort through the servants. It
is contrary to all laws of etiquette to trouble your host or
hostess with all your petty wants.

Never apologize for the trouble you give them; but if you should,
through illness or other cause, occasion more work than a visitor
ordinarily brings to a household, let the gift, which, in any
case, you would make to the servants on leaving the house, be
somewhat heavier than would otherwise have been necessary.

This question of fees to servants is a very important one. Many
people are disposed to regard it as an imposition which is
tolerated only through the force of custom. Others view it in the
light of paying for an extra burden, which their presence has laid
upon the servant's shoulders. The latter view, if not entirely the
correct one, is, at least, as reasonable as the former, and a
generous nature will probably adopt it. The opposition will say,
"But all cannot afford to make these presents," and "The servants
are hired on the express understanding that they will have to
serve their employer's guests, as part of the work they are
engaged to do." There is something in this; but, on the other
hand, it might be asked, "Do any of you who complain of having to
make these involuntary gifts for extra service on the part of the
servants, rest satisfied in your own mind when your profession,
business, or the service from which you draw your source of
living, requires extra exertions from you? You are, perhaps, the
manager of the greatest bank that ever was opened, or the director
of the largest department under the control of the State. Do you
not, when anything more than usual is required of you, look for,
if you do not get, extra remuneration, in the shape of promotion,
money, or testimonials? I am sure you do, if you would speak
honestly, and, if so, how can you suppose servants should expect
otherwise? Whether they get all they look for, or think they ought
to have, is a separate affair. Perhaps you, too, do not get all
you deem yourself to merit. The system of fees is, no doubt, like
all other human institutions, liable to considerable abuse. At one
time it was considered beneath the dignity of a gentleman to give
anything but gold, and whilst that superstition prevailed, it must
doubtless have pressed very hard upon poor people, to whom to go
into society was to be ruinously fined, without the privilege of
appeal. Even at the present day, there are certain classes of
servants who are "as death, and cannot be satisfied," unless their
"'itching palms" are heavily laden with their fee; but they are
but rarely approached by poorer people."

With regard to the amount of fees to servants in a household, it
is not possible to lay down any precise rule. Much must depend on
the length of the visit, the position of the master of the house,
and the position in which you are supposed to stand toward him;
and on each of these points you must exercise your own discretion,
and consult your own means or generosity.

Gentlemen give fees to the men servants only, as a general rule,
and ladies give to the female servants only; and though the strict
observance of this rule may seem at times to work injustice, it is
better to adhere to it than to mar the comfort and position of
those who come after you, and who may not have the means of being
liberal over and above the prescribed standard. Under no
circumstances is a lady called upon by the rules of etiquette to
give fees to men servants; the lady's-maid and the housemaid are
the only ones she is expected to remember; but if a gentleman
visit where only female servants are employed, he should make them
a present on his departure.

Feeing the servants in a hotel is open to many objections, as it
is apt to influence them unduly in second or third arrivals at the
same house; but it is a custom so fixed that it has become second
nature to them to look for it. It is certainly a person's own
fault if he submits to being fleeced by the servants ill a hotel.
Attendance is certainly included in the high prices charged, yet
the custom prevails in spite of it, and those who do not comply
with it will soon find the difference, although there may be
nothing sufficiently impertinent or negligent for positive

Fees to railway porters and others are certainly not required by
the rules of etiquette to be paid. The payment of them is indeed
forbidden by many of the railway companies; but the receiving of
them is winked at, the result being that travellers who want
attendance are, for the most part, obliged to pay for it. The
system is, however, a pernicious one, and travellers should
discourage it as much as possible, if only for the sake of those
who cannot afford to sustain it.

"I am sorry," said a gentleman to a porter (need we say an
Irishman?) who had looked after a number of parcels, and stowed
them conveniently away in the car, "that the regulations of the
company do not allow me to give you a shilling." "If your honor,"
replied the porter, with a grin, "were to lose _two_, I should
know where to find them."

At a dinner party, an evening company, a ball, or like occasions,
it is customary, on coming away, to give a trifle, the gentleman
to the waiter who hands him his hat, etc., the lady to the
attendant in the dressing-room; but you are not called upon to
remember every servant in attendance. There is a story told of an
old English gentleman, rich enough to be above the suggestion of
poverty, and notoriously liberal enough to be above the imputation
of meanness, who, being at a dinner party, was presented by one
servant with his hat. To this man he gave a shilling. Another
advanced, and helped him into his coat, and to him the old
gentleman also gave a shilling. A third gave him his cane, and
received in exchange a shilling; but when a fourth approached,
bearing his gloves, the old gentleman gazed upon him for a moment,
and then said, quietly: "You may keep them, my good man; it'll be
cheaper for me than to receive them," and then walked out. This
was, however, an abuse of advantage on the part of the servants,
which, if repeated, others would do well to rebuke in a similar

An English writer on this subject gives some hints that would be
equally conducive to regularity and comfort if adopted in this
country, saying:

"There is no question but that we should seek to perform all our
duties without hope of recompense; and yet, as regards our
treatment of servants, we should be especially careful that, in
endeavoring to make their bodily comfort and mental improvement an
object of consideration, we do not allow ourselves to dwell upon
the hope of gratitude or affection from them in return. Many have
done so, and having, with that view, been tempted to accord unwise
indulgences and to overlook serious faults, they have found that,
far from gaining the love of their servants, they have incurred
their contempt; and when they have perceived that their favors,
unappreciated, have led but to new encroachments, they have
hardened their hearts, and rushed into an opposite extreme. Then
they have considered their servants as mere machines, from which
labor must be extorted by all available means.

"A man-servant is rarely grateful, and seldom attached. He is
generally incapable of appreciating those advantages which, with
your cultivated judgment, you know to be most conducive to his
welfare. Do you accord to him regular hours, and a stated
allowance of work; do you refrain from sending him out because it
is wet, and he is unwell; do you serve yourself rather than ring
for him at dinner time, he will rarely have the grace to thank you
in his heart for your constant consideration. Hear him. He will
thus describe a comfortable place:' There were very few in the
family; when they went out of a night, we made it up in the
morning; we had nice hot suppers, and the cook made a good hash
for breakfast, and we always get luncheon between that and dinner;
and we were all very comfortable together, and had a friend in
when we liked. Master swore at us sometimes, but often made us a
present for it when he had been very violent; a good-hearted man
as ever lived, and mistress was quite the lady, and never meddled
with servants. It was a capital place.'

"Servants' sympathies are with their equals. They feel for a poor
servant run off his legs, and moped to death; they have no feeling
for a painstaking mistress, economical both from principle and
scanty means; they would (most of them) see her property wasted,
and her confidence abused without compunction. It is the last
effort of virtue in a servant if, without any _private reason_, he
should discharge his duty by informing you of the injury which you
are enduring at the hands of his fellow-servant. It is an effort
of virtue; for it will bring down many a bitter taunt and hard
word upon his faithful head.

"'I never got a servant out of a place by telling tales on him,'
will be said to him. Directly a servant departs, we all know,
tongues tied before are loosened to gain our favor by apparent
candor. When it can avail us nothing, we are told. We all know
this, and have said:'Be silent now; you should have mentioned this
to me at the time it occurred.'"

Supposing, then, you have the _rara avis_, the servant that
'speaks at the time,' be chary of him--or let me say _her_ (the
best servants are women). Oh! as you value her, let her not
suppose you cannot part with her. Treat her with confidence, but
with strict impartiality; reprove where necessary, mildly, but
decidedly, lest she should presume (power is so tempting), and
compel you, if you would retain your freedom, to let her go.

There is one thing a man-servant values beyond all that your
kindness and consideration can do for him--his liberty; liberty to
eat, drink, and be merry, with your things, in the company of his
own friends; liberty to get the housemaid to clean his
candlesticks and bring up his coals; and the housemaid wishes for
liberty to lie in bed in the morning, because she was up so late
talking to John in the pantry; liberty to wear flounces and
flowers. The cook desires liberty too. For this liberty, if you
grant it, they will despise you; if you deny it, they will respect
you. Aim at their esteem; despair of their love or gratitude; make
your place what the best class of servants will value, and, though
in their heart they may not thank you for it, you will gain,
perhaps, one servant out of twenty who will keep gross imposition
and gross immorality at bay.

"These remarks can never be intended to deny the warm attachment
of female servants to the children of their employers. Deep love,
no doubt, is lavished by many a woman on the babe she has nursed.
There is a great deal to be said on the chapter of nurses; which
would require to be dealt with by itself. Much wisdom is required
in the administration of a nursery, to which but few general rules
would apply. Cruel is the tyranny the nurse frequently practises
on the parent, who often refrains from entering her nursery, not
from want of love for her children, but positive dread of the sour
looks which greet her. Let her be firm; let no shrinking from
grieving her darling, who would 'break his heart if his Nana
went,' deter her from discharging the encroaching servant.

"On the choice of servants much of the comfort of the young
housekeeper depends. It often happens that her choice has been
determined by appearance rather than the value of character. If
such be the case, she will have many difficulties to encounter. It
is, in the present day, hardly safe to take a servant if there be
a single objection to character, however it may be glossed over by
the person referred to on this point; for there is now an
unhealthy disposition to pass over the failings of servants who
have left their places, and to make them perfect in the eyes of
others. In respect to sobriety, many people will not acknowledge
that a servant had had the vice of drinking, but will cover the
unpleasant truth with such gentle and plausible terms that it
becomes difficult to comprehend how far the hint is grounded, or
not. Be assured when a lady or gentleman hesitates on this point,
or on that of honesty, it is wiser not to engage a servant. Nor
are you deviating from Christian charity in not overlooking a
dereliction of so material a sort. The kindest plan to the vast
community of domestic servants is to be rigid in all important
points, and, having, after a due experience, a just confidence in
them, to be somewhat more indulgent to errors of a more trivial

"It is always desirable to have, if possible, servants of one
faith But if it so happens that you have a Roman Catholic servant
and a Protestant in your service, you are bound to allow each the
free exercise of her religion, and you ought not to respect them
if, out of interest, they will conform to yours. An exercise of
authority on this point amounts, in my opinion, to an act of
tyranny, and it can only tend to promote insincerity, and,
perhaps, engender skepticism in its object. Nothing is, indeed, so
dangerous as to unsettle the faith of the lower classes, who have
neither time nor opportunity of fairly considering subjects of
religious controversy.

"While on the subject of servants, I must deprecate the over
indulgence of the present system towards them. Formerly they were
treated with real kindness; but it was the kindness that exacted
duty in return, and took a real interest in the welfare of each
servant. The reciprocal tie in former times between servant and
master was strong; now it is wholly gone. The easy rule of masters
and mistresses proceeds far more from indifference than from
kindness of heart; for the real charity is to keep servants
steadily to their duties. They are a class of persons to whom much
leisure is destruction; the pursuits of their idle hours are
seldom advantageous to them, and theirs are not minds, generally,
which can thrive in repose. Idleness, to them, is peculiarly the
root of all evil; for if their time is not spent in vicious
amusements, it is often passed in scandal, discontent, and vanity.
In writing thus, I do not recommend a hard or inconsiderate system
to servants. They require, and in many instances they merit, all
that can be done to alleviate a situation of servitude. They ought
not to be the slaves of caprice or the victims of temper. Their
work should be measured out with a just hand; but it should be
regularly exacted in as much perfection as can be expected in
variable and erring human nature.

"Another point on which I would recommend firmness is that of
early hours. In this respect, example is as important as precept;
but, however uncertain you may be yourself, I would not relax a
rule of this kind; for every comfort during the day depends on the
early rising of your servants. Without this, all their several
departments are hurried through or neglected in some important

"Your mode of address to servants must be decisive, yet mild. The
authoritative tone I do not recommend. It is very unbecoming to
any young person, and it rarely attains the end desired; but there
is a quiet dignity of deportment which few servants ever can
resist. This should be tempered with kindness, when circumstances
call it forth, but should never descend to familiarity; for no
caution is more truly kind than that which confines servants
strictly to their own sphere.

"Much evil results from the tendency, more especially of the very
young or of very old mistresses of families, to partiality.
Commonly, one servant becomes the almost avowed favorite; and it
is difficult to say whether that display of partiality is the more
pernicious to the servant who is the object of it, or to the
rankling and jealous minds of the rest of the household. It is
true that it is quite impossible to avoid entertaining a greater
degree of confidence in some servants than in others; but it
should be shown with a due regard to the feelings of all. It is,
of course, allowable towards those who take a decidedly
responsible and confidential situation in a household. Still,
never let such persons assume the reins of government; let them
act the part of helmsmen to the vessel, but not aspire to the
control of the captain.

"It is generally wise and right, after a due experience of the
principles and intentions of servants, to place confidence in
their honesty, and to let them have the comfort of knowing that
you do so. At the same time, never cease to exercise a system of
supervision. The great principle of housekeeping is regularity,
and without this (one of the most difficult of the minor virtues
to practise), all efforts to promote order must be ineffectual. I
have seen energetic women, clever and well-intentioned, fail in
attaining a good method, owing to their being uncertain in hours,
governed by impulse, and capricious. I have seen women, inferior
in capacity, slow, and apathetic, make excellent heads of
families, as far as their household was concerned, from their
steadiness and regularity. Their very power of enduring monotony
has been favorable to their success in this way, especially if
they are not called upon to act in peculiar and difficult cases,
in which their actual inferiority is traceable. But these are not
the ordinary circumstances of life."

In this country, servants are proverbially more troublesome than
in Europe, where service is often transmitted through generations
in one family. Here, the housekeeper is obliged to change often,
taking frequently the most ignorant of the lower classes of
foreigners to train into good and useful servants, only to have
them become dissatisfied as soon as they become acquainted with
others, who instill the republican doctrine of perfect equality
into their minds, ruining them for good servants. There are some
points of etiquette, however, upon which every lady should insist:

Never allow a servant to keep people waiting upon the door step.

Never allow servants to treat any one disrespectfully.

Never allow servants to turn their own proper duties over to the
children or other servants by a bribe. Many fond parents would be
amazed if they knew how much running and actual work was performed
by little Nellie or Charlie, and how many fits of mysterious
indigestion were caused by the rich cake, candy, or half-ripe
fruit that paid for the service and bribed the silence.

Never allow a servant to keep a visitor standing parleying on the
door-step, while she holds the door ajar. Train the door-servant
to admit any caller promptly, show them to the parlor, bring up
their cards at once, and return with your answer or message.

There are two occasions in a man's lifetime when may he make his
account with liberality to servants, whether he will or whether he
will not. These two are the occasions of his marriage and his

On his marriage, the bridegroom is expected to make presents to
all the servants of his father-in-law or mother-in-law, rather
according to their expectations than according to his means. To
old servants, who have been attached to the bride, the bridegroom
will naturally wish to give some token of the value he sets upon
their devotion. New dresses, new shawls, money, or a handsome
equivalent of it, are expected. Money is usually given to the
other servants; The amounts must, of course, depend, in a great
degree, upon the means of the bridegroom; but he must be prepared
for a heavy outlay on the occasion, if the servants be numerous.


LET us start this chapter by saying that no word of it is
addressed to the sterner sex, who will find hints for their
etiquette under the head of "Travelling;" but it is for the
especial guidance of ladies, many of whom in this independent
country travel without escort.

When a lady arrives alone at a hotel, she should, if possible, be
provided with a letter of introduction to the proprietor; she
should send for him immediately upon her arrival, present her
letter, or her card, and mention the time for which she desires to
secure a room.

In going to meals, a lady should request one of the waiters to
meet her at the dining-room door, and escort her to the table,
saving her the awkwardness of crossing the room alone, and showing
others that she is a regular resident in the house. She may keep
the services of this waiter at table during her stay, and should
give him a present of money before leaving.

In giving an order at a public table, a lady should decide quickly
what dishes she desires, and order them in a low but distinct

No lady will stare round the room, fidget with her napkin, plate,
knife, or fork, play with the salt, or exhibit any awkward
embarrassment, while waiting for a meal to be served. It is
allowable to look over a newspaper in the interval at breakfast;
but the habit, quite common, of carrying a novel to the table is
not lady-like.

If a lady accepts any civility from a gentleman at the same table,
such as placing butter, sugar, or water nearer to her plate, she
must thank him; but by no means start a conversation with him.

If a lady have friends at the table, she may converse in a low,
quiet tone; but any loud tone, laughing extravagantly, or
gesticulations, are exceedingly ill-bred. To comment upon others
present, either aloud or in a whisper, is extremely rude.

A lady must never point to any dish she wishes passed to her. If
she cannot call it by name, a well-trained waiter will know her
wishes if she looks at the dish.

Any bold action or boisterous deportment in a hotel will expose a
lady to the most severe censure of the refined around her, and may
render her liable to misconstruction, and impertinence.

Greetings offered by other ladies at the table, or in the parlor,
should not be too hastily checked, as the acquaintance so formed
is never required by etiquette to be recognized elsewhere.

A lady alone at a hotel should wear the most modest and least
conspicuous dress appropriate to the hour of the day. Full dress
must not be worn unless she has an escort present.

A lady should never go alone to the supper-table after ten
o'clock. If she returns from an entertainment at a later hour, and
has no escort to supper, she should have that meal sent to her
room. A lady should carefully lock her trunks before leaving her
room at a hotel, and should give her purse and jewelry into the
care of the proprietor on her arrival, ringing for them if she
requires them during her stay.

No lady should open a window in a hotel parlor, if there are other
ladies near it, without first ascertaining that it will not
inconvenience them.

No lady should use the piano of a hotel uninvited if there are
others in the room. It looks bold and forward to display even the
most finished musical education in this way. It is still worse to

A lady should never go herself to the door of a hotel to call a
hack. Ring for a servant to perform this office, and he will bring
the hack to the ladies' entrance.

No lady should stand or linger in the halls of a hotel, but pass
through them quietly, never stopping alone for a moment.

No lady should stand alone at the front windows of a hotel parlor,
nor may she walk out on the porch, or, indeed, any conspicuous

A lady is not expected to recognize her friends across the parlor
or dining-room of a hotel.

No scolding of servants is permissible in a hotel. If they are
negligent or disrespectful, complain to the housekeeper or
landlord; it is their business to keep the domestics in order, not
that of their guests.

For a lady to go up the stairs of a hotel singing is ill-bred, and
may expose her to rudeness.

It is a breach of etiquette to take any newspaper, book, or music
you may find in a hotel parlor to your own room, even if you
return it.

Lolling or lounging in a public parlor can never be permitted to a

It is a breach of etiquette for a lady to touch her baggage in a
hotel after it is packed. There are plenty of servants to attend
to it, and they should carry to the hack even the travelling-
shawl, satchel, and railway novel. Nothing looks more awkward than
to see a lady, with both hands full, stumbling up the steps of a
hotel hack.

No lady must ever pass in or out at the public entrance of a
hotel. There is always an entrance for ladies especially, and it
is bold and unbecoming for them to be seen in the one appropriated
to gentlemen. A gentleman who will escort a lady through the
public entrance shows a lamentable ignorance of the usages of
hotel life.


TO those who require to be taught how they may express themselves
in those delicate negotiations which precede the question of
marriage, this little book is not addressed. It is not proposed to
introduce form and ceremony into that which should spring purely
and spontaneously from the heart, and which should be the most
natural expression of a most natural feeling, in connection with
which etiquette would be simply a mockery. Etiquette, being only a
system devised and found convenient for the social rule and
guidance of the many, cannot by any possibility be applied to the
conduct of two who may reasonably be supposed to be acquainted
with each other's sentiments before they begin to speak about
them. If they are not so acquainted, all the etiquette in the
world cannot help them, nor preserve them from making what may be
a blunder of the most awkward kind. There are people who profess
to teach how and in what terms an offer of marriage should be
made, whether by letter or by mouth, and, in either case, what
should be said. I pretend to no such knowledge, believing that if
the heart cannot suggest the way and the words, nothing else can
do so.

Yet, the wiser way, usually, is in speech. Letters are seldom
expressive of what really passes in the mind of a man; or, if
expressive, seem foolish, since deep feelings are liable to
exaggeration. Every written word may be the theme of cavil. Study,
care, which avail in every other species of composition, are death
to the lover's effusion. A few sentences, spoken in earnest, and
broken by emotion, are more eloquent than pages of sentiment, both
to parents and daughter.

The place of etiquette, the social law which regulates the conduct
of engaged people towards others, and of other people towards
them, is immediately after the announcement of the engagement;
then there is scope for the display of good manners and good
breeding, and there are certain rules which must be observed.

Some members of the gentleman's family, his nearest relations,
should call upon the family of the lady, and they should return
the call as soon as possible. It is by no means necessary that the
two families should be intimate; there may be good and sufficient
reasons why they should not be so; all that is necessary is the
show of civility, which is included in the interchange of visits.
If the family of the gentleman does not reside in the same city as
that of the lady, the announcement of the engagement should be
followed by letters from his parents or nearest relatives to the
young lady herself or her parents. Kindly and cordial feeling
should be the prevailing tone of such letters, and they must be
answered at once.

Though it is often true that the gentleman who aspires to love one
member of a family must make his account in loving all the rest in
some degree, there is no necessity for such a display of
amiability on the part of the lady.

It is customary for the gentleman to make some present to his
fiancee soon after the engagement. The most elegant and desirable
present is a handsome ring, "the engagement ring," which should be
either of diamonds or pearls. The lady sometimes returns a similar
ring, or the gentleman has two made exactly similar, each of the
betrothed wearing one.

The first present must be made by the gentleman. It is very proper
for this first present to be followed by gifts upon appointed
days, as birthdays, Christmas, or New Year's Day, and the lady is
at perfect liberty to return the compliment. It is considered more
elegant for the gentleman to offer jewelry, the lady some gift
which is the work of her own hands, as a handsome pair of
embroidered slippers, a handkerchief with richly embroidered
monograms, a cigar-case embroidered, or some similar gift.

When once the engagement is allowed, it is the custom to admit the
gentleman into the intimate society of his newly-adopted
relatives; he is looked upon as something more than a potential
member of the family; he is implicitly trusted in every way.

It is a gross breach of good manners to omit the gentleman from
any invitation in which his fiancee is included, and there are not
many young ladies who would consent to accept such an invitation.
There is, however, no rule of etiquette forbidding an engaged lady
to do so, if she so desires.

In return for the membership which is accorded to him in the
lady's family, the engaged man should show all possible deference
towards the of members it, especially to the parents. Towards the
sisters of his lady love, he should be kind; and generally
attentive, and frank, and cordial in his intercourse with her
brothers. If there are young children in the family, nothing will
make him more popular with the older members than an occasional
gift of toys or confectionery, or an excursion during the holidays
with the schoolboys, who will readily swear allegiance, after such
a trip, to "the man Emily is going to marry," or (vulgar little
wretches that they are) to "Amelia's _beau_."

It is not according to the strict laws of etiquette for the
brothers and sisters to call the new member at first by his
Christian name. Much will depend on his age and his disposition.
There are some people whom one can never address otherwise than
formally, while with others it seems perfect nonsense to call them
otherwise than by the most familiar term.

If not a positive requirement of etiquette, it is, at least, a
politic thing to pay considerable attention to the future mother-
in-law. To occupy a good place in her esteem and affection is to
smooth many a furrow, which otherwise might trip one up in his
walk over the tender ground that leads to matrimony.

An engaged man should never forget the exceedingly abnormal
position he occupies with reference to the lady's family; the
inconvenience his presence may occasion, and the amount of
forbearance necessary on their parts to insure even a friendly
status for him in the household. He should endeavor to repay this
by a careful attention to the general rules of the family, and
even to the particular fancies of the members; he should rigidly
observe their hours for meals, and be careful not to stay later in
the evening than the usual hour for the household to retire.

There should be the most perfect candor, on the gentleman's part,
concerning the state of his financial affairs, and he should
respectfully consider the worldly position of the family he is to
enter, never doing anything to hurt their feelings, either by word
or act, should their status be below his own, and never professing
scorn or contempt for wealth or power, should their status be
higher than his own.

During the arrangement of pecuniary matters, a young lady should
endeavor to understand what is going on, receiving it in a right
spirit. If she has a private fortune, she should, in all points
left to her, be generous and confiding; at the same time, prudent.
Many a man, she should remember, may abound in excellent
qualities, and yet be improvident. He may mean to do well, yet
have a passion for building; he may be the very soul of good
nature, yet be fond of the gaming-table; he may have no wrong
propensities, and yet have a confused notion of accounts, and be
one of those unfortunate men who muddle away a great deal of
money, no one knows how; or he may be a too strict economist, a
man who takes too good care of the pence, till he tires his wife's
life out about an extra dollar; or he may be facile, or weakly
good-natured, and have a friend who preys on him, and for whom he
is disposed to become security. Finally, the beloved Charles,
Henry, or Reginald may have none of these propensities, but may
chance to be an honest merchant, or a tradesman, with his floating
capital in business, and a consequent risk of being one day rich,
the next a pauper.

Upon every account, therefore, it is necessary for a young lady to
have a settlement on her; and she should not, from a weak spirit
of romance, oppose her friends who advise it, since it is for her
husband's advantage as well as her own. By making a settlement,
there is always a fund that cannot be touched--a something,
however small, as a provision for a wife and children; and whether
she have a fortune or not, this ought to be made. An allowance for
dress should also be arranged; and this should be administered in
such a way that a wife should not have to ask for it at
inconvenient times, and thus irritate her husband.

Flirtations on either side should be avoided, not only as, matter
of etiquette, but of humanity. No one who is really sincere in his
professions will wish to inflict pain on the object of his
affections. The same remark applies to the other side. Can it be
anything but painful in the extreme for a really loving heart to
see in the beloved one a tendency to trifle with the most sacred
emotions of the heart?

It is not etiquette to make signal displays of devotion in public,
or to be constantly sitting apart from the rest of the company;
but, on the other hand, "the authorities" will do well to make
occasions when the engaged pair can be by themselves, doing so,
not ostentatiously, but rather doing it, without speaking of it or
drawing attention to it. Nothing can make an engaged couple look
more foolish, and feel more uncomfortable, than for the family to
quit the room in which all have been sitting, with some such
remark as: "Come away! Fanny and Mr. Amor want this room to
themselves." Poor Fanny!

In equally bad taste is exclusiveness by the happy couple
themselves. Their devotions should be reserved for a _tete-a-
tete_, and women are generally in fault when it is otherwise. They
like to exhibit their conquest; they cannot dispense with
attentions; they forget that the demonstration of any peculiar
condition of things in society must make some one uncomfortable:
the young ladies are uncomfortable because they are not equally
happy; the young gentlemen detest what they call nonsense; the old
think there is a time for all things.

All sitting apart, therefore, and especial displays are in bad
taste; and they so often accompany insincerity, that the truest
affections are apt to be those which are reserved for the genuine
and heartfelt intimacy of private interviews.

At the same time, airs of indifference and avoidance should be
equally guarded against; since, however strong and mutual
attachment may be, such a line of conduct is apt needlessly to
mislead others, and so produce mischief. True feeling, and a
ladylike consideration for others--a point in which the present
generation essentially fails--are the best guides for steering
between the extremes of demonstration, on the one hand, and of
frigidity on the other.

It is the lady's exclusive privilege to appoint the wedding-day;
and however impatient the lover, he must submit patiently to her
decree upon this important point.

When the day is fixed, it is customary for the bridegroom to have
ready for the occasion a handsome present, usually a parure of
jewels, but governed, of course, by his means and generosity. In
France, this gift is called the _corbeille de mariage_, and the
rule there is to make its value ten per cent. of the bride's
private fortune. It consists of a handsome basket or box,
containing shawls, jewels, lace, furs, gloves, fans, and a purse
containing a sum of money in _new_ gold pieces. This gift is
always placed on exhibition with the rest of the wedding presents.

It is etiquette for wedding presents to be sent always to the
_bride_, never to the bridegroom, though they be given by friends
of the latter. They may be sent at any time during the week
previous to the wedding-day, and it is customary to display them,
handsomely arranged before the ceremony.

In sending out invitations to a wedding, there are two cards
folded in the invitation in the envelope. The invitation is in the
name of the bride's mother-or if she is not living, the relative
or friend nearest the bride-and is as follows:

_Wednesday, October 24th,_
No. 74 L--- STREET.

The two cards, one large and one small, are folded in this, which
is printed upon handsome note-paper. Upon the large card is


On the smaller one:


If, however, there is no bridal reception on the wedding-day, but
the young people "receive" after their return from the bridal
tour, the card containing their joint names contains also the date
of reception, as:

_Wednesday, Novenber 17th,_
No. 614 --- STREET.


_Wednesdays in Novemnber,_
No. 614 --- STREET.

The bridal calls are not expected to be returned until the last
day of reception.

The bridegroom should give to the first groomsman the control of
affairs, and the money for the necessary expenses. He it is who
presents the snowy bouquet to the bride, the bridegroom making a
similar offering to the bridesmaids. It is the first groomsman who
leads the visitors up to the young couple for the words of
congratulation. It is he who gives the clergyman his fee, who
engages the carriages, and, in short, makes all arrangements. If,
as is often the case, the whole bridal party go to the depot to
see the happy pair start for the wedding trip, it is then the
first groomsman who secures tickets, checks baggage, and secures
pleasant seats for the Benedict and bride. It is his duty, also,
to send the notice of the marriage to the newspapers. In England
but one groomsman, or "best man," is allowed to a bridal party,
though the bridesmaids may number a dozen, but in this country one
groomsman is allowed for every bridesmaid.

If the wedding takes place in church, it is customary to reserve
the front seats in the body of the church for the relatives of the
young couple.

It is the height of rudeness for _any one_, whether clergyman,
bridegroom, or any member of the bridal train, to keep the bride
waiting. The clergyman should be within the rails, the bridegroom
and groomsmen should be in the vestry-room, by the time bride is
due at the church. The bridesmaids may receive the bride in the
vestibule, or may accompany her to the church.

The bridal party should meet in the vestry-room. Then the bride,
leaning on the arm of her father, heads the procession; the
bridegroom, with the bride's mother upon his arm, follows; then
groomsmen and bridesmaids in couples follow.

At the altar, the bridegroom receives the bride, and the ceremony
begins. The groomsmen stand behind the bridegroom, the bridesmaids
behind the bride. The bride and bridegroom remove the right hand-
glove in some churches; in others it is not deemed necessary. The
bride stands on the left of the groom.

When the wedding takes place at the house of the bride, it is
customary to divide the room, either by folding doors or a
curtain, and allow the bridal party to be grouped before their
friends see them. If, however, this is not convenient, they enter
in the same order as in church. It is somewhat customary of late
for the bride and groom to walk arm-in-arm to the altar; but it is
against established etiquette; the bride should walk with her
father, or, if orphaned, with whoever takes the father's place on
the occasion.

Where a ring is used, it is the duty of the first bridesmaid to
remove the bride's left-hand glove.

After the ceremony, the parents of the bride speak to her first;
then the parents of the bridegroom before other friends. After the
ceremony, the bride and groom go in the same carriage from the
church to the house, or from the house to the railway depot.

If there is a breakfast or supper, the bride does not change her
dress until she assumes her travelling dress.

If parties are given to the bride and groom, the groomsmen and
bridesmaids must be also invited, and, if they prefer, all may
wear the dress worn at the wedding. This is, however, optional.

During the fortnight following a wedding, friends of the family
should call upon the mother of the bride.

It is contrary to etiquette to wear mourning to a wedding. Even in
the case of a widowed mother to either of the happy pair, it is
customary to wear gray, or some neutral tint, upon the wedding-
day, even if the deepest mourning is resumed afterwards.

The bridal dress and the costume of the bridesmaids are not
matters that come so much within the province of etiquette as of
the fashions, which vary as the winds. All that etiquette requires
is that good taste shall guide the whole of the arrangements. Pure
white is the only color worn by the young bride, and the full veil
of lace, with wreath of orange flowers, is _de rigueur_; but for a
widow, pearl-color or tinted silk, without any veil or wreath, is
better. If the bride is a maiden no longer young, it is not in
good taste to wear the dress of a youthful bride. White gloves,
vests, and ties are demanded for the bridegroom and groomsmen. The
bridesmaids may wear colors, but a prettier effect is produced by
dresses of pure white, with trimmings only of color. The
travelling dress of a bride should be very modest in color and
fashion, as it is in extremely bad taste to draw attention to the
_bride_ when travelling.

It is not etiquette, at a wedding or wedding reception, to
congratulate the bride; it is the bridegroom who receives
congratulations; the bride, wishes for her future happiness. A
gentleman or lady who is acquainted with both bride and groom must
speak first to the bride; but if a stranger to either, may first
speak to the one with whom he is already acquainted, who will then
introduce the other. If a stranger to both bride and groom, the
first groomsman must make the introduction.


IN the baptisms of infants there are certain customs in the world
of good society, independent of the religious ceremonies. A few
hints will suffice, as each sect has its own peculiar forms known
to the members of that church; we do not profess to guide these,
but merely the worldly observances.

It is not customary to invite mere acquaintances to be godfather
or godmother to an infant; these should be tried friends of long
standing, or better still, near relations, to whom the obligations
thus imposed will be pleasures and not tasks.

Never invite any friends to be godfather or godmother, who are not
of the same church as the child to be baptized.

When you are invited to stand godfather or godmother to an infant,
never refuse without grave cause, and then do so immediately, that
the parents may have time to make other arrangements.

It is unkind, as well as impolite, to refuse to act in this
capacity towards children who, from poverty or other reasons, may
occupy an inferior position in society to your own.

It is customary to allow the godmother to select herself the

It is, however, customary for the maternal grandmother and the
paternal grandfather to act as sponsors for the first child; the
paternal grandmother and the maternal grandfather as sponsors for
the second child. If the grand-parents are not living, the nearest
relatives of the same church should be invited.

It is customary for the sponsors to make the babe a present. If it
is a little boy, the godfather gives a silver cup, with the full
name engraved upon it, and the godmother some pretty piece of
silver, jewelry, or dress. If a little girl, it is the godmother
who gives the cup, and the godfather the other gift. Where the
sponsors are wealthy, it is not unusual to fill the christening-
cup with gold pieces. The godmother often adds to her gift the
christening robe and cap, both trimmed with white ribbons--for a
babe should wear only pure white when presented for baptism.

It is contrary to etiquette to invite young persons to stand as
sponsors for an infant.

In the Roman Catholic church, it is customary to baptize an infant
as soon as possible. If the child is very delicate, it is
customary to send at once for the priest, and have the ceremony
per formed in the bed-room; but if the babe is healthy and likely
to live, it is usually taken to the church for baptism, as young
as the physician will permit.

In entering the church, the nurse, carrying the child, goes first;
then follow the sponsors, who do not walk arm-in-arm; then the
father, and after him the invited guests.

When the ceremony commences, the sponsors stand on each side of
the child, the godfather on the right, and the godmother on the

The babe should be held lying in the arms of the nurse, its head
upon the right arm. The cap should be tied so as to be easily
unfastened and removed.

When the priest asks who are the sponsors of the child, it is
sufficient for them to incline the head, without speaking.

Baptism is a gratuitous ceremony in the church, but it is
customary for the father to present some token to the officiating
clergyman, in the name of the babe, or, where parents are wealthy,
to make a handsome donation to the poor of the parish, through the

In the Protestant churches, it is customary to defer the baptism
until the mother of the child can be present.

It is always desirable to have the ceremony performed in the
church, if possible; but if there is a necessity for it, such as
the illness of the child or the parents, it can take place in the
house of the parents, by their special request.

No one should ever offer to act as sponsor for a child. It is the
privilege of the parents to make the selection amongst their
relatives or friends.

If the ceremony is performed at the house of the parents, a
carriage must be sent to the house of the clergyman to convey him
to the house of the parents, and wait until after the ceremony, to
convey him home again. It is extremely rude to expect a clergyman
to provide his own conveyance, or to walk.

Friends invited to a christening usually carry some gift to the
babe; gentlemen a gift of silver, and ladies some pretty piece of

If the ceremony is performed in the house of the parents, or if
the guests return there from the church, the only refreshments
required by etiquette are cake and wine.

The father of the child usually gives a present of money to the
nurse who carries the babe to the church.

It is not etiquette to remain long at a christening; and it is
better taste for the infant to be removed to the nursery as soon
as the ceremony is over. To keep a weary mother sitting up
entertaining guests, or a cross, tired child on exhibition, are
either of them in bad taste.

For a guest to show any annoyance if a child cries loudly, or is
in any way troublesome, is the height of rudeness. Remarks or even
frowns are forbidden entirely, even if the infant screams so as to
make the voice of the clergyman entirely inaudible.

Etiquette requires that the babe be praised if it is shown to the
guests, even if it is a little monster of pink ugliness. Ladies,
especially mothers, will _see_ something beautiful, if only its
helpless innocence, and gentlemen must behold infantile graces, if
they cannot actually behold them. "Mother's darling" must be the
great attraction at a christening, if it only improves the
occasion by a succession of yells.


WHEN the saddest of all the ceremonies of this life calls forth
the sympathy of friends and relatives, there are many little
points the observance of which evinces a delicate consideration
for the mourners, and a respect for the melancholy occasion.

In entering the house of mourning, a gentleman must remove his hat
in the hall, and not replace it while in the house.

Loud talking in the chamber of death is a rudeness which shows not
only a want of respect for the dead, but a want of consideration
for the grief of the survivors.

All quarrels must be forgotten in the presence of death. Enemies
who meet at a funeral are bound by etiquette, if not by feeling,
to salute each other with quiet gravity.

Whilst the body of the dead remains in the house, no visitor must
expect to see the members of the bereaved family, and no offence
may be taken if admission is refused to the nearest friends.

The formalities necessary upon the death of a member of a family
entail upon the survivors many painful interviews, many
directions, and often most harrowing discussions. It is,
therefore, customary to entrust these details to some relative or
friend, who, while near enough to carefully direct the affairs, is
yet able to bear the trying details better than the members of the
immediate family. It is best to select some one accustomed to the
discharge of this duty, and more prudent to name a limit for the

Where there are no funeral arrangements made in the will, the
person taking this charge may ask one interview with the nearest
relative, but after that, relieve them of all care in the matter.
If there is no friend who can undertake these trying duties, it is
then customary to make the undertaker the master of the painful

To surround the funeral ceremonies with great parade and pomp is
usually more of a vain and ostentatious display than an act of
respect towards the dead; at the same time, any meanness or
parsimony is in bad taste. The expenses should be governed by the
position of the deceased, and the means of the survivors.

If invitations are sent out, it is customary to have a number
printed, and sent to the friends. The following is the usual form:

"You are respectfully invited to attend the funeral of J. J. C, on
Wednesday, the 24th of May, 18-, at 10 o'clock A.M., from his late
residence, No. 174 street. To proceed to Laurel Hill Cemetery."

Or, if the services are not at the house:

"You are respectfully invited to attend the funeral of J. J. C,
from the church of the Incarnation, on Wednesday, the 24th of May,
at 10 o'clock A.M. To proceed to Laurel Hill Cemetery."

It is contrary to the rules of etiquette to send these invitations
by post.

A list of the persons invited must be given to the person
directing the funeral ceremonies, and he will give the undertaker
a list of the order in which the guests are to be placed in the
carriages, if the funeral leaves the city, or the order of the
procession if the guests go to the grave on foot.

If the invitation is given through the newspapers, the words
"Without further notice" must be added, and the guests will not
expect another invitation. The list is then omitted, and no
especial order observed in placing the guests in carriages or

Guests invited to a funeral must not present themselves before the
hour appointed, when the corpse is generally exposed for the last
gaze of the friends. It is customary for the family to pay their
last visit to the coffin just before that hour, and all intrusion
is against the customs of society.

The corpse usually is exposed in a drawing-room, and the family
assemble in another apartment, if the services are to be conducted
in church, and the guests go from the house there. If, however,
the guests are invited to meet the funeral in church, the coffin
is usually placed in front of the chancel, with the lid removed,
and friends pass, from the _feet to the head_, up one aisle and
down another, after the services are over.

If the guests assemble at the house of the deceased, it is
customary for some near relative, not of the immediate family, to
receive them, and do the honors of the occasion.

The ladies of the family are never expected to see the guests at a
funeral; but it is optional with the gentlemen. Strict etiquette
at the present day denies the ladies of the family the privilege
of following the corpse from the house; but it is a custom "more
honored in the breach than in the observance."

When the funeral procession is ready to start, the clergyman
leaves the house first, and enters a carriage, which precedes the
hearse. Then follows the coffin, which is placed in the hearse;
the next carriage is for the immediate family and relatives.
Guests stand uncovered while these mourners pass them, no
salutation being expected.

The gentleman who does the honors should precede the family as
they pass from their room to the carriages, assist them in, close
the door, and motion the driver to move slowly forward, and to the
next carriage to drive up to the door.

The same order is observed at the church door, where the master of
ceremonies assists the mourners to leave and re-enter the

When the private carriage of the deceased follows the hearse, it
should be empty, and precede the other carriages.

If the friends go on foot, and the weather is cold, the gentlemen
may wear their hats; but if the weather is mild, it is customary
to walk uncovered, with the hat in the right hand.

If the hat is worn, it must be removed as the coffin passes from
the hearse to the church, when the guests form a double line, down
which it is carried, and the same line and observance must be made
after the service, as the coffin is carried from the church to the
hearse again.

If lady friends attend a funeral, if they are not in mourning,
they should wear grave, quiet colors. To go to a funeral in a gay
dress is insulting.

Upon the coffin of an infant or young person, it is customary to
place a wreath of white flowers.

Upon the coffin of a married person, a cross of white flowers is
usually placed.

Upon the coffin of an army or navy officer, the hat, epaulets,
sword, and sash are placed, and it is customary to use the flag to
cover the coffin.

A sufficient number of carriages should be provided to carry all
invited guests to the cemetery. At the cemetery, the priest or
clergyman walks in advance of the coffin, and the others alight
from the carriages and stand around the grave.

After the carriages leave the cemetery, it is not customary for
the guests to return to the house of the mourners; but each may,
on re-entering the carriage, direct the driver, in a low tone,
where to drive him.

The family physician, if able to attend the funeral, should have a
seat in the carriage following that of the immediate family.

The carriage must be sent for the priest or clergyman in time for
him to be punctually at the house at the appointed hour.

If gifts of flowers are sent to the mourners, they must be white
only, and sent on the day of the funeral early enough to be used
in the decoration of the coffin.

If pall-bearers are invited, they must be immediate friends of the

It is a foreign custom of much beauty and significance to select
young children for pall-bearers for infants and children, dressing
them in white, and draping the coffin in white, trimmed with
silver fringe and cords.

If gloves and crape bands are distributed to the gentlemen guests,
they must be handed them when they first enter the house. It is a
gross violation of etiquette to make any selection in such cases;
nobody expects to have gloves so given as to fit the hands; but
they must be worn. It is far more elegant to present yourself
already provided with black kid gloves on your hands, and allow
the undertaker to provide you only with the crape.

Friends in deep mourning are not expected to pay visits of
condolence, and are excused from accepting funeral invitations;
but all others are expected to accept them. It is but a poor
compliment to your friends to attend their dinners, receptions,
balls, and parties, and refuse to be present when they are in
affliction, or to pay the last act of respect to the memory of
those they love.

During the week following a funeral, friends should leave their
cards for the family of the deceased, and call again about a
fortnight later, asking then to see the members of the family.

It is not customary to ask to see the family of a deceased friend
before the funeral; but cards should be sent, and offers of
service sent by note.

The lady friend nearest the family, or a relative not of the
immediate family, is the proper person to purchase the mourning
for the ladies of the family, and the gentleman friend or relative
that for the gentlemen.

No member of the immediate family of the deceased should leave the
house between the death and the funeral upon any errand or

At the funeral of a mounted officer, his horse, fully equipped,
and draped in mourning, should be led by a servant after the

If the deceased belonged to any society, as Free Masons, Odd
Fellows, or such organization, the society should be invited
through a note sent to the President, and they will send word to
the master of ceremonies if there is any especial order in which
they wish to follow the corpse, or any form or ceremony peculiar
to that order which they would like observed. These invitations,
if given through the newspapers, should carefully specify the
lodge or order to which the deceased belonged. The regalia in such
cases is usually displayed on the coffin-lid, but removed before
the coffin leaves the house.

White plumes are customary on the hearse of a young person, and
black ones for married and elderly people.

It is not customary to send invitations to the funeral of a person
who has died of contagious disease, and the statement of the
malady in the newspapers is generally accepted by the friends as
an excuse for the omission of invitations.

In visiting a cemetery, it is an act of rudeness to stand near a
lot where mourners are assembled, or in any way to notice those
who are decorating the graves of friends. No time can be named
when the delicate attentions and observances of etiquette are more
grateful than when sorrow is heavy on the heart,


THERE are a few rules of etiquette applicable to visitors to
artists' studios, which it will be well to note, the more so
because they are special, and might not suggest themselves, as a
matter of course, even to those to whom Nature presented the whole
code of etiquette when she gave them a gentle disposition.

It is not etiquette to ask an artist the price of his pictures at

If a visitor sees a painting or a piece of statuary which he
wishes to possess, he asks simply that he may have the refusal of
it; or he says to the artist: "I wish to have this picture, if it
is not disposed of." After leaving the studio, the visitor writes
and asks the price, of which he is informed by the artist, in
writing. Should the price be larger than the would-be purchaser is
disposed to give, he writes again to that effect, and it is no
breach of etiquette to name the sum which he wished to spend upon
the work of art. This gives an opportunity to the artist of
lowering his price.

It is not customary, however, to haggle about the sum, and the
correspondence should not be carried farther than above, except it
be an intimation from the artist that he will accept the terms of
the purchaser, and that the picture is subject to his order, and
will be sent to him on further instructions.

Some portrait painters have a practice which, for obvious reasons,
cannot be adopted by painters of general subjects. They have a
card hung up in a conspicuous part of the studio, showing the
price at which they will execute portraits of the sizes given. At
the bottom of this card there is generally an intimation that half
the price must be paid after the first sitting, the remainder when
the portrait is completed.

This practice saves time and trouble, and it would be well if
other artists could adopt some system whereby the price of such
paintings as they may have for sale might be made known to
visitors. But the price of a fancy picture is to be ascertained by
the artist only by what it will bring, and it is quite likely that
the wealth of the buyer, or his known admiration for good
paintings, may reasonably make a difference in the sum asked by
the artist, who might ask a lower price of a man whom he knew
could not afford so much. There is nothing wrong in this, for an
artist has as much right to get as much more than the minimum
price of his picture as anybody else has to get the best price for
his labor or his merchandise.

Portrait painting is, however, pretty much a repetition of the
same sort of work, and the artist would be the last man in the
world to admit that there could be such difference in the
execution of the work as to warrant a scale of prices in
conformity therewith.

It is not etiquette to visit the studio of an artist excepting by
special invitation, and then only at the hours he may appoint. To
go at any other time is ill-bred; for although he may be there, he
will probably be unwilling to be disturbed at his work.

It is ill-bred to take a young child to visit the studio of an
artist, as there are generally articles there of value and easily
broken or soiled; and even if the child is well trained, the owner
of such articles would be in terror lest they should be ruined.

It is excessively ill-bred to criticize harshly, in the presence
of an artist, the works displayed in his studio. Extravagant
praise is also in bad taste. A few cordial words of praise and
pleasure should, of course, be spoken, and a friend may sometimes
point out where improvements could be made; but it is a thankless
task generally, and it is in much better taste to leave all
criticism to the public journals, when the paintings are on public

It is against the rules of etiquette to keep an artist waiting, if
you are sitting for a portrait. His time is of value to him,
whatever yours may be to you; and it is equally rude to detain him
after the sitting is over. His politeness may hinder him from even
hinting to you that you are trespassing upon his hours for work,
though he may be fretting silently at your rudeness in so doing.

It is contrary to the rules of etiquette to look around a studio
in which you may be sitting for a portrait, unless you are invited
by an artist to do so. It is against the rules of etiquette to ask
to see an unfinished picture, even if it is one that is being
painted by your own order.

To uncover any picture or article in a studio that may be veiled
or hidden from view is extremely rude. It is equally so to turn a
picture that is hung to face the wall, or standing facing it.

Gentlemen must never smoke in a studio, unless especially invited
by the artist to do so.

To whisper in a studio is excessively ill-bred; for although you
may make a remark entirely independent of what is around you, you
may rest assured you will have the credit of having ridiculed or
censured some of the pictures you have been invited to examine.

To behave in a studio as if you were in a store, pricing pictures,
inquiring about what is for public exhibition, what is not; who
ordered this picture or that; whose portrait this or that may be;
or in any way reminding the artist that his genius is merchandise,
is rude and indelicate.

It is against the rules of etiquette to handle the pictures or
other articles in a studio.

It is extremely rude, if an artist continues his employment during
a visit to his studio, for the visitor to stand behind him, or
very near him, or in any way to seem to watch his work.


IT is impossible for a lady or gentleman to act with perfect ease
and graceful manner at table when in company, at a hotel or any
public place, unless they habitually pay attention to those minor
points of etiquette, which form so distinctive a mark of perfectly
good breeding. Habitual neglect of the courtesies and etiquette of
the table will make them appear awkward restraints upon occasions
when they are important. If the father or mother of a family
accustom the children, by example as well as precept, to be
attentive and polite to each other at every meal, they need never
fear that they will shame them by rudeness or awkwardness when
they go abroad.

Even when a person habitually eats alone, it is better to do so
gracefully and with attention to the rules of etiquette, that
habits of awkwardness may not be formed, which it will be
difficult to shake off when in company.

To make noises when eating, sucking soup with a gurgling sound,
chewing meat noisily, swallowing as if with an effort, smacking
the lips, or breathing heavily while masticating food, are all
marks of low breeding.

It is a bad habit to put large pieces of food into the mouth. If
you are addressed suddenly with your mouth so filled, you are
obliged to make an awkward pause before answering, or to run the
risk of choking by swallowing the great mouthful too hastily.

Never open the napkin entirely, but let it lie on the lap, partly

Sit neither very near nor very far from the table.

It is rude to move your arms at table so as to incommode those on
either side of you.

Ladies should, after seating themselves, endeavor to draw their
skirts into a space that will not crowd those seated beside them.

To lean back in the chair is rude, and surely no gentleman would
ever be guilty of tipping his chair at table. Sit erect, not
stiffly, but in an easy position.

Bread must always be broken, never cut, and certainly never

If a plate is sent to you filled with the food you have selected,
keep it, as others may not have the same choice; if the plate
contain one dish, such as pie or pudding, you may pass it on to
those beside you, and wait till others above you are served before
reserving a plate for yourself.

To eat very fast is inelegant; to eat very slowly bears an air of
affectation. Try to preserve the happy medium.

It is a good plan to accustom yourself to eat with the left hand,
and thus avoid shifting your knife and fork from one hand to the

A gentleman will always see that ladies are served before eating

Avoid making any noise on your plate with your knife and fork.

It is against all rules of etiquette to soak up gravy with bread,
to scrape up sauce with a spoon, or to take up bones with the

Never cross the knife and fork on a plate until you have finished
eating. Never hold your knife and fork erect in your hands at each
side of your plate, when conversing at the table.

Never ask for a second helping. It is the duty of those at the
head and foot of the table to offer it.

To blow soup to cool it, or to pour tea or coffee into a saucer
for the same purpose, are acts of awkwardness never seen in polite
society. Wait until they are cool enough to be pleasant.

Use the salt-spoon, butter-knife, and sugar-tongs even when you
are alone.

If you want to cough, sneeze, or blow your nose, leave the table.
If you have not time, turn away your head, and lean back in your

To pass a plate with a knife or fork upon it, or a cup with a
spoon in it, are acts of rudeness. Put your spoon in the saucer,
and your knife and fork on the table, until you are served.

Never hurry away from the table as soon as you finish eating, if
others remain to converse. If you are obliged to leave before a
meal is finished or immediately after, ask to be excused for so
doing, and apologize for the necessity.

Never mention at the table any subject that is likely to disgust
others. It is a piece of rudeness only too common, and is to be
severely censured. Many who are utterly without affectation are
really sensitive on such points, and their meal and comfort are
both spoiled if disgusting associations are suggested at table.

At home, if you use a napkin-ring, fold your napkin and replace it
in the ring when you have done with it. If you are dining out,
never fold your napkin, but place it beside your plate.

None but a clown would use the table-cloth for a napkin, pick his
teeth with his fork, put his fingers in his plate, or wipe his
face with his napkin.

If you are unfortunate enough to find anything disgusting in your
food--a hair in the soup, a coal in the bread, a worm in the
fruit, or a fly in your coffee--do not loudly exclaim, or disturb
the appetite of others by mention of your mishap. Remove the
disgusting object quietly, or change your cup or plate without

The French poet, Delille, tells of an interview between himself
and Marmoutel, which rather humorously points out how table
etiquette may change.

Delille and Marmoutel were dining together, in the month of April,
1786; and the conversation happened to turn upon dinner table
customs. Marmoutel observed how many little things a well-bred man
was obliged to know, if he would avoid being ridiculous at the
table of his friends.

"They are, indeed, innumerable," said Delille, "and the most
annoying fact of all is, that not all the wit and good sense in
the world can help one to divine them untaught. A little while
ago, for instance, the Abbe Cosson, who is Professor of Literature
at College Mazarin, was describing to me a grand dinner to which
he had been invited at Versailles, and to which he had sat down in
the company of peers, princes, and marshals of France.

"'I'll wager now,' said I,'that you committed a hundred blunders
in the etiquette of the table.'

"'How so?' replied the Abbe, somewhat nettled. 'What blunders
could I make? It seems to me that I did precisely as others did.'

"'And I, on the contrary, would stake my life that you did nothing
as others did. But let us begin at the beginning, and see which is
right. In the first place, there was your table napkin--what did
you do with that when you sat down to table?'

"'What did I do with my table napkin? Why, I did like the rest of
the guests: I shook it out of the folds, spread it before me, and
fastened one corner to my button-hole.'

"'Very well, _mon cher_, you were the only person who did so. No
one shakes, spreads, and fastens a table napkin in that manner.
You should have only laid it across your knees. What soup had


"'And how did you eat it ?'

"'Like every one else, I suppose. I took my spoon in one hand and
my fork in the other.'

"'Your fork? Good heavens! None but a savage eats soup with a
fork. But go on. What did you take next?'

"'A boiled egg.'

"'Good. And what did you do with the shell?'

"'Not eat it, certainly. I left it, of course, in the egg-cup.'

"'Without breaking it through with your spoon?'

"'Without breaking it.'

"'Then, my dear fellow, permit me to tell you that no one eats an
egg without breaking the shell, and leaving the spoon standing in
it. And after your egg?'

"'I asked for some _boulli_.'

"'For _boulli_!' It is a term that no one uses. You should have
asked for beef; never for _bouilli_. Well, and after the

"'I asked the Abbe de Badenvillais for some fowl.'

"'Wretched man! Fowl indeed! You should have asked for chicken or
capon. The word "fowl" is never heard out of the kitchen. But all
this applies only to what you ate; tell me something of what you
drank, and how you asked for it.'

"'I asked for Champagne and Bordeaux from those who had the
bottles before them.'

"'Know, then, my good friend, that only a waiter, who has no time
or breath to spare, asks for Champagne or Bordeaux. A gentleman
asks for Vin de Champagne and Vin de Bordeaux. But now inform me
how you ate your bread.'

"'Undoubtedly like all the rest of the world: I cut it up into
small square pieces with my knife.'

"'Then let me tell you that no one cuts bread; you should always
break it. Let us go on to the coffee. How did you drink yours?'

"'Pshaw! At least, I could make no mistake in that. It was boiling
hot; so I poured it, a little at a time, in the saucer, and drank
it as it cooled.'

"'_Eh bien_! Then you assuredly acted as no other gentleman in the
room. Nothing can be more vulgar than to pour tea or coffee into a
saucer. You should have waited till it cooled, and then have drunk
it from the cup. And now you see, my dear cousin, that so far from
doing precisely as the others did, you acted in no one respect
according to the laws prescribed by etiquette.'"


IT is against the rules of strict etiquette to take a child when
making formal calls, as they are a restraint upon conversation,
even if they are not troublesome about touching forbidden
articles, or teasing to go home.

Never take a child to a funeral, either to the house of mourning
or to the cemetery.

Never allow a child to take a meal at a friend's house without
special invitation. It is impossible to know how much she may be
inconvenienced, while her regard for the mother would deter her
from sending the little visitor home again.

Never allow a child to handle goods in a store.

Never send for children to meet visitors in the drawing-room,
unless the visitors themselves request to see them. Make their
stay then very brief, and be careful that they are not

Never take a child to church until it is old enough to remain
perfectly quiet. Although you may be accustomed to its restless
movements, and not disturbed by them, others near you will
certainly feel annoyed by them.

It is not etiquette to put a child to sleep in the room of a
guest, nor to allow children to go at all to a guest's room,
unless especially invited to do so, and even then to make long
stay there.

Etiquette excludes children from all companies given to grown
persons, from all parties and balls, excepting such as are given
especially given for their pleasure.

When invited to walk or drive, never take a child, unless it has
been invited, or you have requested permission to do so; even in
the latter case, the consent is probably given more from good
nature than from any desire to have a juvenile third to the party.

Never crowd children into pic-nic parties, if they have not been
invited. They generally grow weary and very troublesome before the
day is over.

Never take a child to spend the day with a friend unless it has
been included in the invitation.

Never allow children to be in the drawing room if strangers are

Never allow children to handle the ornaments in the drawing room
of a friend.

Never allow a child to pull a visitor's dress, play with the
jewelry or ornaments she may wear, take her parasol or satchel for
a plaything, or in any way annoy her.

Train children early to answer politely when addressed, to avoid
restless, noisy motions when in company, and gradually inculcate a
love of the gentle courtesies of life. By making the rules of
etiquette habitual to them, you remove all awkwardness and
restraint from their manners when they are old enough to go into

Never send a child to sit upon a sofa with grown people, unless
they express a desire to have it do so.

Never crowd a child into a carriage seat between two grown people.

Never allow a child to play with a visitor's hat or cane.

If children are talented, be careful you do not weary your
friends, and destroy their own modesty by "showing them off," upon
improper occasions. What may seem wonderful to an interested
mother, may be an unutterable weariness to a guest, too polite to
allow the mother to perceive the incipient yawn.

Never allow children to visit upon the invitation of other
children. When they are invited by the older members of the
family, it is time to put on their "best bibs and tuckers."

Never take children to a house of mourning, even if you are an
intimate friend.

The custom for having children in the drawing-room for morning or
evening parties, or in the dining-room with the dessert at dinner
companies, is not only often an annoyance to the guests, but bad
for the children themselves.

It is one of the first duties of parents to train their children
at home as they would have them appear abroad. An English lady
writes thus:

"If, then, we desire that our children shall become ladies and
gentlemen, can we make them so, think you, by lavishing money upon
foreign professors, dancing-masters, foreign travel, tailors, and
dressmakers? Ah, no! good breeding is far less costly, and begins
far earlier than those things. Let our little ones be nurtured in
an atmosphere of gentleness and kindness from the nursery upwards;
let them grow up in a home where a rude gesture or an ill-tempered
word are alike unknown; where between father and mother, master
and servant, mistress and maid, friend and friend, parent and
child, brother and sister, prevails the law of truth, of kindness,
of consideration for others, and forgetfulness of self. Can they
carry into the world, whither we send them later, aught of
coarseness, of untruthfulness, of slatternliness, of vulgarity, if
their home has been orderly, if their parents have been refined,
their servants well mannered, their friends and playmates kindly
and carefully trained as themselves? Do we want our boys to
succeed in the world; our girls to be admired and loved; their
tastes to be elegant; their language choice; their manners simple,
charming, refined, and graceful; their friendship elevating? then
we must ourselves be what we would have our children to be,
remembering the golden maxim, that good manners, like charity,
must begin at home.

"Good manners are an immense social force. We should, therefore,
spare no pains to teach our children what to do, and what to avoid
doing, in their pathway through life.

"On utilitarian as well as social principles, we should try to
instruct our children in good manners; for whether we wish them to
succeed in the world, or to adorn society, the point is equally
important. We must never lose sight of the fact, that here
teachers and professors can do little, and that the only way in
which it in possible to acquire the habits of good society is to
live in no other."


MARRIED ladies and elderly gentlemen are allowed to claim
precedence at the card-table, over single young ladies and the
younger men. Ladies of "a certain age," if single, can claim the
privileges of the card-table with married ladies.

Etiquette does not require any one to play unwillingly. It is very
rude to urge the request, as many have conscientious scruples on
this matter, though they may not care to wound the feelings of
those playing by proclaiming them.

It is not kind, however, and therefore it is not etiquette, to
refuse to play, if there are no such scruples, when the refusal
prevents a game being made up.

None should attempt to play--whist, for instance--unless really
able to do so moderately well. It is not fair to impose a poor
partner upon one who may be really fond of the game and play well.

It is not etiquette for those very fond of card-playing to
victimize every guest by producing cards whenever they call,
whether they care for playing or not. Many will play from good-
nature who would prefer to pass the time in conversation.

Husband and wife, or any partners who may be supposed to be
intimately acquainted with each other's play, should not play
together. It is taking an unfair advantage of the other couple for
them to play partners.

If playing for stakes, the gentleman pays for his lady partner in
the event of loss; but does not receive her winnings.

All violations of the known rules of the game are violations of
the laws of etiquette as well. Yet, if such violations are made,
they should be pointed out in a quiet and courteous manner, not
made the subject of violent dispute or censure. Any altercations
are violations of the laws of etiquette. Loss of temper, no matter
how continuous the ill-luck, is a breach of manners; so are
objurgations of one's partner's performances, and criticisms on
the play of partner or adversary. In whist, as in marriage, the
partner is taken for better for worse, and in neither case should
an ill-assorted couple try to make matters worse than they are by
grumbling and growling at each other.

It is a breach of etiquette to talk constantly upon other subjects
whilst engaged in a game of cards. Whist, as all good players
know, is a game that requires close attention, and almost absolute
silence; and the other games can be much disturbed by talking.

To converse with those who are not playing is still worse. It is a
violation of all courtesy to allow the attention to be diverted at
all. If addressed while at the game, make your answer as brief as
politeness will permit, and give your whole attention to the game
again. No one can play so well with divided attention; and you may
be certain it is an annoyance to your partner, even if your
opponent does not object to it.

Any appearance of an understanding between partners, as smiles,
nods, or winks, are gross violations, not only of the laws of the
game, but of good manners.

To finger the cards whilst they are being dealt is a breach of
good manners. Even if you do not violate the laws of the game by
actually looking at them, you are committing an error in etiquette
by seeming to be in any way aware of their existence before you
are at liberty to take them in your hand.

Never start a conversation that would lead to long argument or
discussion in the pauses of the game. Small talk, chit-chat, is
certainly admissible whilst the cards are being dealt, but only
upon topics which can be readily dropped when the play is again
the leading subject.

To play cards with an air of weariness or abstraction is
positively rude. If you are not interested in the game, strive to
appear so, and if you are not equal to that, you had better stop

Try to avoid argument upon nice points in playing. Even if you are
right, it is more courteous to yield to your adversary than to
keep others waiting whilst you prove your position.

Etiquette by no means requires stakes of money. If counters are
not provided for betting games, you may refuse to bet, without any
breach of good manners.

In your own house, never offer guests any but _new_ cards to play

It is a violation of etiquette to propose card-playing in another
person's house. This is the privilege of the host or hostess, and
if they do not suggest the amusement, it is absolutely rude for
any one else to do so.

It is a breach of etiquette to hurry others who are playing.
Nothing annoys a deliberate player more than to have a partner or
adversary constantly saying, "Come, play; it is your turn now,"
or, "We are all waiting for you."

Even if you take no pleasure in cards, some knowledge of the
etiquette and rules belonging to the games most in vogue will be
useful to you, unless you object upon principle to playing. If so,
it is better at once to state the fact. If not, and a fourth hand
is wanted at a rubber, or if the rest of the company sit down to a
round game, you will be deemed guilty of a want of politeness if
you refuse to join.

The games most common are whist, loo, euchre, vingt-un, and

Whist requires four players. A pack of cards being spread upon the
table, with their faces downward, the four players draw for
partners. Those who draw the two highest, and those who draw the
two lowest, become partners. The lowest of all claims the deal.

In declaring that married people may not play at the same table,
society by no means understands anything so disgraceful as
dishonest collusion; but persons who play regularly together
cannot fail to know so much of each other's mode of acting under
given circumstances that the chances no longer remain perfectly
even in favor of their adversaries.


THE fashion of cards is a variable one. It may be the fashion to-
day to have them large, square, and printed upon rough surfaces;
to-morrow they may be small, long, and highly glazed; now they are
engraved; now written. In fact, there are too many freaks and
changes to mention all; but etiquette requires always perfect
simplicity. An ornamental visiting card is simply detestable.

Glazed cards are not now in vogue, but they may be again, and
ladies' cards are cut much smaller than those used by gentlemen.

Persons who have a city and country residence must have two sets
of cards, with the residence at the time of calling engraved on
the left-hand corner, thus:

No. 27 --- STREET,

while Mrs. Potts is in the city, and


when Mrs. Potts is out of town. Visiting cards must never bear a
business address.

All merely honorary or official designations must be omitted,
except in cards designed for official visits only.

Officers of the army or navy may use their title or not, as
preferred, as:




are either of them correct, the former having the advantage of
putting the receiver in possession at once of his visitor's rank,
the latter allowing scope for promotion or change of title. For
militia officers to use their titles upon visiting cards is a
piece of affectation utterly absurd. Members of Congress are
always entitled to use the "Hon." before the name on their
visiting cards, even after their term of office has expired.
Judges and physicians are also allowed to use their titles; but no
other professional men.

Cards should be engraved in simple Italian characters, and without
flourish, embossed surface, or even ostentatiously large letters.

Every visiting card should have the address in small letters in
the left-hand corner. If used when in a strange city, the usual
address may be scored in lead-pencil, and the temporary one
written under the name, thus:

No. 207 --- STREET.   ST. JAMES HOTEL.

It is optional with unmarried ladies to use the prefix to their

Gentlemen without military, naval, official, or professional
titles generally omit any prefix but may use the abbreviation
"Mr." if they desire.

Autograph visiting cards are conceited affectations. The autograph
of distinguished characters may be desirable; but it is precisely
that class of people who would be least likely to use them. A
neatly engraved card is _en regle_; printed ones look cheap, and
are not suitable for visiting.

Persons in mourning should use cards with black borders.

Young unmarried ladies may use separate cards, or may have their
names added to their mother's, thus:


Leave-taking cards have P. P. C. (_pour prendre conge_) written in
the right-hand corner.

Wedding cards are in the best taste when perfectly simple.

It is a breach of etiquette to leave a card after being informed
that the person visited is at home.

When you have been informed of an important event in the family of
a friend-a birth, a marriage, or a death-if you are unable to
offer personal congratulation or condolence, you may leave a card
within a week.

If you reside in another city, you may send your card by post,
with the word "felicitation" under the name. A mournful event
calls for a letter.

A card left for two or more members of the same family must have a
corner turned down.

A card with a photograph portrait upon it, though to a certain
extent fashionable, is a vulgarism that can never obtain general
favor. If you are a gentleman, your visage may be reserved by the
chambermaid, to exhibit as "one of her beaux," and no lady,
surely, would ever display her face on a visiting card.

Gentlemen presenting flowers or other gifts to ladies should
always attach a card, and over the name write, "With compliments

Christmas gifts, when sent, should be accompanied by the card of
the giver.

Loans of books or music, when returned, should always be
accompanied by the card of the borrower.


NO one should write letters at all who cannot write in a clear,
fair hand, that "those who run may read." In a busy age like the
present, when every one's time has a certain value, we have no
right to impose the reading of hieroglyphics upon our
correspondents. "I's" should be dotted, "t's" crossed, and
capitals used in their proper places, and only the most obvious
abbreviations indulged in. Punctuation is equally _de regueur_;
the most unimportant letters should be carefully punctuated; and
the habit is so easily acquired, and so simple, that after a while
it entails no more time or thought than dotting the "i's."

The handwriting of a lady or gentleman should not be commercial or
scholastic, but firm and characteristic. All affectations in
writing should be avoided, such as sloping one's hand to the left,
the use of flourishes, undue size in the characters, or a
diminutiveness of the same to try eyesight and patience. The
signature should be simple and unostentatious. Nothing can be more
absurd than to see a person whose name can have no significance to
the world in general, sign himself as elaborately as if he were
the Pope or President at least,

Underlining should only be resorted to when the underlined word is
of really great importance. Many ladies carry this practice to
excess, and so rob it of all significance, as a speaker who
emphasized every other word would not be heeded when he needed to
be emphatic. What can be more absurd than such a sentence as the

"We are all very sorry to hear that you cannot come to visit us
this summer, as we expected, and wish your business was not so

For the ordinary correspondence of a lady or gentleman it is
advisable to use white note-paper of good quality, and the size
distinguished as "commercial note."

If monograms or initials are used, they should be as simple as
possible, and in white or black only. Gilt or colored monograms
are in bad taste.

Red sealing-wax is admissible only for business letters, and
wafers are entirely out of style.

In mourning, the paper and envelopes may have a black border
suitable to the relationship of the dead, and the length of time
the mourning has been worn. In the deepest mourning, exaggerations
of black border are unbecoming and in bad taste. Real grief is
always unostentatious.

No letter should contain erasures under any circumstances.

The stamp should be placed exactly in the right-hand corner of the
envelope; it must neither be up-side-down, nor slanting, nor in
any way carelessly affixed. Negligence in these matters evinces a
rudeness to the person to whom you write, as hinting that you
think anything will do.

Blots and smears are almost too gross pieces of carelessness to be
commented upon. After ten years of age, they are entirely

Never omit your own name and address from a letter, whether of
business or friendship.

In writing to persons with whom you are but slightly acquainted,
use as few words as possible. You are not authorized in taking up
much of their time. It is only in correspondence with very
intimate friends that long letters are permissible. If occasion
necessitates a letter to a very busy person, politeness requires
that it should be framed as curtly as is consistent with civility
and perspicuity. It is unpardonable to waste really valuable time,
because we do not choose to be at the trouble of concentrating our
thoughts and sparing our words.

In writing to our friends or acquaintances, we should never
communicate bad news abruptly; but should lead the way to it in
such a manner as to soften the blow. A great deal of pain may be
avoided by a proper choice of words.

We should scrupulously avoid writing too frequently, or at too
great a length, of our own losses and misfortunes. To do this is
merely thoughtless egotism. We may have a right to expect sympathy
from our friends, but we have no right to make our letters
inflictions. Letters should invariably be written cheerfully if
possible, and, at least, in a tone of resignation.

An ill-tempered letter is as great a mistake as a lachrymose one.
Nothing is so inexpedient as to write a letter in a fit of
indignation and anger. If you must give way to your feelings,
write your letter, but let it remain unposted until the next day;
read it over then, and you will probably put it in the fire.

It is better, if possible, to seek an interview with the person
who has wronged or affronted you. Spoken recrimination or reproof
is forgotten; but when you have once written down and issued your
angry thoughts, they are irrevocable, and a sure source of after

In dealing with those who may have treated you unfairly, be civil
in your letters. Be as haughty as you please, and state your
grievance in plain, unvarnished terms, and there end. If the truth
does not sting, nothing you can add to it will do so; and
vituperation, though it does not injure the person upon whom you
bestow it, injures your own cause, and detracts seriously from the
proper dignity of your own position.

In writing, as in conversation, egotism is a capital offence. We
have no more right to be egotistic on paper than we have a right
to be dull or disagreeable. A letter should be like a visit,
bright, inspiriting, and a reflex of our best mood. Above all, it
should be kind and sympathetic.

There are letters whose arrival we hail as we should that of a new
book by a delightful writer, or the visit of a brilliant

Again, there are others, the delivery of which, anticipating all
the dullness and verbosity with which they are certain to be
filled, we dread like the incursions of a well-known bore. Who
would not wish to be the writer of the one? Who would not take any
amount of pains with his correspondence to avoid being dreaded as
the other?

Always answer any letter that may be addressed to you, no matter
who the writer may be. If the letter be from one who has no
business to write to you, nevertheless acknowledge it, and by your
style and manner check further impertinence. Thus:

WASHINGTON, D. C., Jan. 7th, 18-. SIR:

I write to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 5th
inst., acquainting me with your opinion of my speech in Congress
on the 27th ultimo.

I am, sir,
Your obedient servant,
JAMES M. ---


Business letters generally have the name of the firm or person to
whom they are addressed written above the "Gentlemen." or "Sir,"



"Dear sir."

The name of the place from which the letter is written, the date,
the full name of writer and receiver, should be given in some part
of a letter. The practice of heading a note "Monday," without a
date, and signing it "Charlie," is very embarrassing; it makes it
difficult to answer a note unless immediately, when the day of the
week can be readily identified with the day of the month, and when
the receiver knows who his correspondent really is. Besides this,
in the event of the letter miscarrying, it cannot be returned if
there be no surname attached to the signature. A most important
lawsuit in London was lost by a letter, of great value and
significance otherwise, being dropped from the evidence for want
of identification, being directed, "Dearest Tootings," and signed,
"Your loving Poppets." It may seem absurd that a letter of weight
could contain such silliness; but it was a fact.

Do not write on scraps of paper, as if your correspondence were
not worth the cost of a proper sheet. Neither use old envelopes
turned, as some people are wont to do.

Always be sure that your letter has sufficient stamps upon it to
fully prepay its weight.

Do not enclose stamps for an answer unless the matter be a
business one, and your own proper affair.

Should you send manuscript subject to approval to an editor,
enclose stamps sufficient to pay for its return. You have no right
to put another to this expense, especially as you already require
from him a sacrifice of time, in order to look over what you have

Anonymous communications are both cowardly and ill-bred. Under no
circumstances should they be written. The fire is the only fit
asylum for them when received. The Gunpowder Plot might have been
revealed openhandedly, and the anonymous letter even in that case
nearly missed its aim. The only anonymous communications which can
be tolerated are the harmless missives called valentines. These,
however, have fallen out of favor in polite society. Children and
servants are the chief supporters of the manufacturers of the
gorgeous love-letters.

In writing to a person who is the guest of another, take care to
place the name of the host or hostess on the cover of your letter.
Some people address the letter in such a case to the host, and
inscribe the name of their correspondent in the left-hand corner,

No. 347 --- Street,
New York.
For Mrs. T. C. BATES.

This practice is very likely to lead to an unintentional opening
of the letter by the wrong person; for a cursory glance at the
cover would seem to show that the letter was intended for the
person whose name was most prominent. The letter should have been
directed, to the person for whom it was intended first, thus:

Mrs. T. C. BATES,
Care of JAMES GORDON, Esq.,
No. 347 --- Street,
New York.

Unless very well acquainted with your correspondent, do not use
terms implying intimacy.

Business letters usually commence with "Sir," "Gentlemen," "Dear
Sir," or "Dear Sirs," and end with, "I am, Sir (or Gentlemen),
Your obedient servant," etc.

Official letters invariably begin with the title of the person
addressed, and then "Sir," if a civilian or the rank of an

If the letter be to the head of a Department, to a high Government
official, or to a superior officer, it is customary to write in a
strain a little more deferential than ordinary, so that, instead
of saying, as you would to a friend, "I have to acquaint you," "I
have to acknowledge the receipt of your letter," you would say, "I
have the honor to acknowledge." The ending, too, of such letters
should be slightly different: "I have the honor to be, General,
Your obedient servant," taking the place of "I am, sir," etc.

In official communications, margins are always left, so as to
allow of notations being made for the purpose of framing an
answer, and the backs of the pages should be left blank for the
same purpose. It is not customary to write down quite to the
bottom of the page, but to take ample room for the substance of
the letter.

Unless writing officially, or to some public person, it is not
customary in this country to give a man all the titles which may
belong to him.

Remember that "brevity is the soul of wit." Let your letters be
concisely written, not too bluntly, but in a clear,
straightforward style, going at once to the subjects you desire to
mention, with as little preamble as possible. Use the passive
instead of the active voice. To do so prevents the continual
thrusting forward of the first person singular into the letter,
and gives a more modest appearance to the text.

Short notes to strangers on business--as, for instance, in
reference to the character of a servant, asking for some
information, etc.--should be written in the third person singular,

"Mrs. Wright presents her compliments to Mrs. Left, and will feel
greatly obliged by any information respecting the character and
qualifications of Jane Broom, who has applied for a situation as
housemaid in Mrs. Wright's household.

"No.27 F--- Street, Jan 9th, 1869."

The answer should also be written in the third person, and should
contain as much information as possible relative to the points
inquired about, stating whether the servant is honest, sober, and
truthful, and what is her experience of her disposition and

In writing to a servant, or to one considerably below your own
station, the following form may be used:

"Jane Broom is hereby informed that Mrs. Wright is willing to
engage her as housemaid from the 15th of January, 1869.
"No. 27 F Street, Jan. 10th, 1869." Or this:

"Jane Broom--your character is satisfactory, and you can enter my
service on Saturday, the 15th of January."

Or this:

"Mrs. Wright is satisfied with Jane Broom's character, and informs
her that she may enter Mrs. Wright's service as housemaid on
Saturday next."

In sending any communication to a newspaper or magazine, address
to "The Editor," and not to any private person connected with the
publication. By so doing, you will better secure attention than if
you trouble the editor at his own house by addressing him by his
own name. Besides this, some one may be acting for the editor, and
if he sees the packet addressed to the name of the absentee, he
will not feel free to open it, but will send it to him, whereby
confusion and delay, possibly loss of the manuscript, may ensue.

There are six parts to every letter: the date, the complimentary
address, the body of the letter, the complimentary closing, the
signature, the address or superscription; thus:

(Date) PETERSBURG, Va., June 18th, 1869.

(Complimentary address) JAMES MUNROE, Esq.:

(Body of the letter) Your most welcome letter, announcing your
intention of visiting our city, reached me this morning. I hasten
to answer to beg that you will make my house your home during your
stay, and inform me by what train I may expect you, that I may
meet you at the depot. Leaving all else for the first

(Complimentary closing) I am, my dear friend,

(_Signature_) P. T. JONES.

(_Address or Superscription_)
Bangor, Maine.


PERHAPS, in these days of public and private baths, it may seem a
work of supererogation to insist upon cleanliness as the first
requisite in a lady's toilet. Yet it may be as well to remind our
fair readers that fastidiousness on this head cannot be carried
too far. Cleanliness is the outward sign of inward purity.
Cleanliness is health, and health is beauty.

We will begin, then, with the business of the dressing-room, which
can be quite well performed in three-quarters of an hour, or even
less; and should at latest be achieved by eight o'clock in summer,
and nine in winter. To sleep too much is as trying to the
constitution as to sleep too little. To sleep too much is to
render oneself liable to all kinds of minor ailments, both of mind
and body. It is a habit that cannot be too severely censured,
especially in the young. No mother has any right to allow her
young daughters to ruin their temper, health, and complexion, by
lying in bed till nine or ten o'clock. Early rising conduces more
to the preservation of health, freshness, and young looks, than
anything in the world, and even to the proper preservation of our
mental faculties.

The bath is a most important object of study. It is not to be
supposed that we wash in order to become clean; we wash because we
wish to remain clean. The bath should be taken by a person in good
health once a day in winter, and twice a day in summer. For
persons of really robust constitutions, a cold shower-bath may be
recommended; but as a general rule the sponge-bath is safest and
most convenient. Cold water refreshes and invigorates, but does
not cleanse; those persons, therefore, who daily use a cold bath
in the morning should frequently use a warm one at night. For
cleansing purposes, the water should be of from ninety-six to one
hundred degrees, or even one hundred and eight degrees; but such a
bath should be sparingly indulged in, as it exhausts the physical

A tepid bath, varying from eighty-five to ninety-five degrees, is
perhaps the safest for general use, the more particulary as it
answers the purpose both of refreshing and cleansing. It is not
well to remain in the bath for longer than two or three minutes. A
large coarse sponge is best for the purpose. It is advisable to
wet the top of the head before entering a cold bath. Whether soap
be used or not, it is well to apply the flesh-brush gently to the
face and vigorously to the whole body. Nothing improves the
complexion like the daily use of the flesh-brush. When the
brushing is concluded, a huck-a-back or Turkish towel should be
used for the final process of drying.

The teeth must be scrupulously cared for. If proper care were
taken of the teeth in youth, there would be less employment for
the dentist in after life. The Americans ruin their teeth by
drinking iced drinks with hot dinners; the Spanish ladies by
eating sugar all day long; the Mexicans by smoking cigarettes.
Very hot and very sweet things should be avoided. The teeth should
be carefully brushed, not only night and morning, but after every
meal. Very hard tooth-brushes are not advisable, and a simple
tooth-powder of common chalk is safer and more effectual than any
quackeries. The onion, we need scarcely observe, must be the
forbidden fruit of the Eve of the nineteenth century. Indigestible
food is also certain to affect the sweetness of the breath. As
soon as the breath becomes unpleasant, one may be quite sure that
the digestive machinery is out of order.

The nails must always be fastidiously clean, and never allowed to
grow inordinately long. In the cutting of the nails, every care
must be given to the preservation of the shape, and to the removal
of superfluous skin. A liberal use of the nail-brush, warm water,
and best Windsor soap will insure the preservation of a delicate
hand. Gloves must of course be worn out of doors; and even in
doors as much as possible.

The hair requires a good deal of care, though of the simplest and
most inartificial kind. The secret of fine and glossy hair is a
clean hair-brush; and ladies who keep no maid to perform those
offices for them should wash their hair-brushes in hot water and
soda every day. Every other day is the minimum of washing that a
hair-brush should have.

Once secure the perfect cleanliness of your hair-brush, and the
rest will be easy. Brush the hair carefully both at night and
morning; let it be occasionally cleansed with yolk of egg beaten
up, or a mixture of glycerine and lime-juice, and you will find no
need to resort to hair-doctors or quacks. Pomade and oil are
strictly to be avoided; but after a sea-water bath, or during a
sea journey, a little warm pomade will be useful in softening the

Above all things, never attempt to change the color of the hair by
means of fashionable dyes and fluids. Color so obtained cannot
harmonize naturally with the skin, eyes, and eyebrows that Nature
has given. Practices of this kind are simply and strictly
immodest. They evince a senseless desire for fashion, and an
equally senseless eagerness to attract. Auricomus hair-dyes, like
painted lips and cheeks, and pencilled eyebrows, and complexions
purchased, are disgraceful to the wearers. With regard to the art
of obtaining a good complexion, let ladies be careful in regard to
diet, take regular exercise in the open air, wear broad-brimmed
hats in the sun, and veils in the wind; let them avoid pearl
powders and washes of every kind; let them, above all things, go
early to bed, and rise betimes in the morning; and if by so doing
they are not made "beautiful forever," they can never be made so.

The face should never be washed when heated from exercise. Wipe
the perspiration from the skin, and wait until it is sufficiently
cool before you bathe, even with warm water. Rain-water is best
for the bath. In case of any eruption upon the skin, no time
should be lost in procuring medical advice. He who doctors
himself, says the proverb, has a fool for his physician.

With regard to dress, it is impossible to do more than offer a few
general observations. The fashion of dress is for to-day; but the
esthetics of dress are for all time. No matter to what absurd
lengths fashion may go, a woman of taste will ever avoid the
ridiculous. The milliner and dressmaker may handle the scissors
never so despotically, but in matters of color, harmony, and
contrast they remain under the control of their employer. Dress,
indeed, may fairly claim to be considered in the light of a fine
art. To dress well demands something more than a full purse and a
pretty figure. It requires taste, good sense, and refinement.

A woman of taste and good sense will neither make dress her first
nor her last object in life. She will remember that no wife should
betray that total indifference for her husband's taste which is
implied in the neglect of her appearance; and she will also
remember that to dress consistently and tastefully is one of the
duties which she owes to society.

There is a Spanish proverb which says, "Every hair has its
shadow." So. in like manner, every lady, however insignificant her
social position may appear to herself, must exercise a certain
influence on the feelings and opinions of others. If, therefore,
the art of dressing appears either too irksome or too frivolous to
such of the fair sex as are engaged in serious occupations, let
them remember that it performs the same part in beautifying
domestic life as is performed by music and the fine arts in
embellishing the life moral and spiritual. So long, therefore, as
dress merely occupies so much time and requires so much money as
we are fairly entitled to allow it, nothing can be said against
it. When extravagant fashions are indulged in--extravagant habits
fostered at any cost--and under any circumstances--the critic is
quite justified in his strictures, however severe. Dress, to be in
perfect taste, need not be costly; and no woman of right feeling
will adorn her person at the expense of her husband's comfort or
her children's education.

"As a work of art, a well-dressed woman is a study." Her toilet
will be as _bien soignee_ and as well chosen at the family
breakfast-table as at a ball. If she loves bright colors and can
wear them with impunity, they will be as harmoniously arranged as
the artist arranges his colors on the palette. If she is young,
her dress will be youthful; if she is old, it will not affect
simplicity. She will always follow rather than lead the prevailing
fashion, and rather follow her own fashion than violate good taste
or common sense.

The golden rule in dress is to avoid extremes. Do not be so
original in your dress as to be peculiar; and do not affect
fashions that are radically unbecoming to you. Ladies that are
neither very young nor very striking in appearance cannot do
better than wear quiet colors. Ladies who are not rich can always
appear well dressed, with a little care in the choice and
arrangement of the materials. Whatever the texture of the dress,
it should be made by the very best dressmaker you call afford. As
well go to a third or fourth-rate dentist, music-master, or
doctor, as go to a third or fourth-rate dressmaker. The dressmaker
is a woman's good or evil genius.

Morning dress should be faultless in its way. For young ladies,
married or unmarried, nothing is prettier in summer than white or
very light morning dresses of washing materials. Light dresses
must be exquisitely fresh and clean, ribbons fresh, collars and
cuffs irreproachable. All stuffs are to be rigidly eschewed except
those of the very finest kind. Morning dress for elderly ladies of
wealth and position should be of dark silk. Jewelry, hair
ornaments, and light silk dresses are not permissible for morning

Walking dress should always be quiet. Rich walking dress attracts
attention, which in the street is not desirable. For the carriage,
a lady may dress as elegantly as she pleases.

Elderly ladies should always dress richly. Any thin old lady may
wear delicate colors, whilst a stout, florid person looks best in
dark or gray. For young as well as old, the question of color
must, however, be determined by complexion and figure. Rich colors
harmonize with rich brunette complexions and dark hair; delicate
colors are the most suitable for delicate and fragile styles of

For ball dresses, light and diaphanous materials are worn; silk
dresses are not suitable for dancing. Black and scarlet, black and
violet, or white, are worn in mourning; but ladies in deep
mourning should not go to balls at all. They must not dance, and
their dark dresses look out of place in a gay assembly.

At dinner parties, unless of a small, friendly kind, only the
fullest dress is appropriate. Demi-toilette can be worn at
unceremonious dinners, and even high dresses, if the material be
sufficiently rich. It is better to wear real flowers at large
dinner parties, but artificial ones at balls; since the former
would drop and fall to pieces with the heat and the dancing.

Much jewelry is out of place for young ladies at any time; and,
indeed, there is as much propriety to be observed in the wearing
of jewelry as in the wearing of dresses. Diamonds, pearls, rubies,
and all transparent precious stones belong to evening dress, and
should never be worn before dinner. In the morning, one's rings
should be of the simplest kind, and one's jewelry limited to a
good brooch, gold chain, and watch. Diamonds and pearls are as
much out of place during the morning as a low dress or a wreath.

It is well to remember in the choice of jewelry that mere
costliness is not always the test of value; and that an exquisite
work of art, such as a fine intaglio or cameo, or a natural
rarity, such as a black pearl, is a possession more distingue than
a large brilliant which any one who has money enough can buy as
well as yourself. Of all precious stones, the opal is the most
lovely and commonplace. No merely vulgar woman purchases an opal.

Gloves, shoes, and boots must always be faultless. Gloves cannot
be too light for the carriage, or too dark for the streets. A
woman with ill-fitting gloves cannot be said to be well dressed;
while to wear soiled ones at your friend's soiree is to show her
that you think lightly of herself and her company.

It may be remarked, by the way, that perfumes should be used only
in the evening, and with the strictest moderation. Perfumes, to be
tolerable, must be of the most _recherche_ kind. Some people, of a
sensitive temperament, would be made ill by the smell of musk or
patchouli. Finally, let every lady remember Dr. Johnson's
criticism on a lady's dress: "I am sure she was well dressed,"
said the Doctor; "for I cannot remember what she had on."


IT has been aptly said that "the bath deserves an Order." The
first requisite of a gentleman's toilet is undoubtedly the bath,
which should be as bracing as the constitution will allow, and
used morning and evening in summer, and every day in winter.
Country gentlemen, who live much in the open air, and take plenty
of exercise, have no excuse for shirking the cold shower-bath; but
denizens of cities, and men who are obliged to lead very sedentary
lives, cannot indulge with equal safety in this luxury, and must
never continue it in the teeth of reason and experience. Only
physiques of finest quality can endure, much more benefit by, a
cold-water shock all the year round; and though physique is always
improvable, great reformation must not be attempted rashly. Let
the bath of from sixty to seventy degrees be freely indulged in by
the strong, and even by the less robust, in summer time; but in
winter a temperature varying from eighty-five to ninety-five
degrees is the safest. The flesh-brush should be vigorously
applied to all parts of the body, after which the skin must be
carefully dried with Turkish or huck-a-back towels. It is well to
remain without clothing for some little time after bathing.
Nothing is so healthy as exposure of the body to air and sun; a
French physician has recommended the sun-bath as a desirable
hygienic practice. A bath in fresh water should always be taken
after a sea-dip.

The next thing to be done is to clean the teeth. This should be
done with a good hard tooth-brush at least twice a day. Smokers
should rinse the mouth immediately after smoking, and should be
careful to keep the teeth scrupulously clean. The nails should
also be kept exquisitely clean and short. Long nails are are an

Our advice to those who shave is, like _Punch_'s advice to those
about to marry "Don't." But it must by no means be understood that
suffering the beard to grow is a process that obviates all
trouble. The beard should be carefully and frequently washed, well
trimmed, and well combed, and the hair and whiskers kept
scrupulously clean by the help of clean, stiff hair-brushes, and
soap and warm water. The style of the beard should be adapted to
the form of the face; but any affectation in the cut of the beard
and whiskers is very objectionable, and augurs unmitigated vanity
in the wearer. Long hair is never indulged in except by painters
and fiddlers. The moustache should be worn neat, and not

Beau Brummell spent two hours in dressing; but a gentleman can
perform all the duties of his toilet to perfection in less than
half that time.

A great French writer has said, with as much grace as philosophy,
that the artist and man of letters needs only a black coat, and
the absence of all pretension, to place him on the level of the
best society. It must be observed, however, that this remark
applies only to the intellectual workers, who, if they do
occasionally commit a minor solecism in dress and manners, are
forgiven on account of their fame and talents. It is not enough
that a man should be clever, or well educated, or well born, to
take his place in society; he must be acquainted with all that
this chapter, and, indeed, this little volume throughout,
professes to teach.

A gentleman should always be so well dressed that his dress shall
never be remarked at all. Does this sound like an enigma? It is
not meant for one. It only implies that perfect simplicity is
perfect elegance, and that the true test of dress in the toilet of
a gentleman is its entire harmony, unobtrusiveness, and
becomingness. Displays should be avoided. Let a sensible man leave
the graces and luxuries of dress to his wife, daughters, and
sisters, and not seek distinction in the trinkets on his watch-
chain, or the pattern of his waistcoat. To be too much in the
fashion is as vulgar as to be too far behind it. No really well-
bred man follows every new cut he sees in his tailor's fashion-
book. Only very young men are guilty of this folly.

A man whose dress is appropriate, neat, and clean, will always
look like a gentleman; but to dress appropriately, one must have a
varied wardrobe. This should not, on the average, cost more than a
tenth part of his income. No man can afford more than a tenth of
his income for dress.

The author of _Pelham_ has aptly said that "a gentleman's coat
should not fit too well." There is great truth and subtlety in
this observation. To be fitted too well is to look like a tailor's

In the morning, wear a frock coat, and trousers of light or dark
color, as befits the season. When in the country or at the
seaside, gray or shooting costumes are best.

In the evening, though you spend it alone with your family, wear a
black dress suit; and if you have sons, bring them up to do the

It is the observance of these trifles in domestic etiquette that
marks the true gentleman. For evening parties, dinner parties, and
balls wear a black dress coat, black trousers, black silk or cloth
waistcoat, thin patent-leather boots, a white cravat, and white
kid gloves. Abjure all fopperies, such as white silk linings, silk
collars, etc.; above all, the shirt-front should be plain. At
small, unceremonious parties, gloves are not necessary; but, when
worn, they should be new and fit well. Economy in gloves is an
insult to society. A man's jewelry should be of the best and
simplest description. False jewelry, like every other form of
falsehood and pretence, is unmitigated vulgarity.

Elaborate studs and sleeve-links are all foppish and vulgar. A set
of good studs, a gold watch and guard, and one handsome ring, are
as many ornaments as a gentleman can wear with propriety. For a
ring, the man of fine taste would prefer a precious antique
intaglio to the handsomest diamond or ruby that could be bought.
The most elegant gentleman with whom the author was ever
acquainted--a man familiar with all the courts of Europe--never
wore any other shirt-studs in full dress than three valuable black
pearls, each about the size of a pea, and by no means beautiful to
look upon.

Lastly, a man's jewelry should always have some use, and not, like
a lady's, be worn for ornament only.

Colored shirts may be worn in the morning; but they should be
small in pattern and quiet in color. Fancy cloths of conspicuous
patterns are exceedingly ojectionable. With a colored flannel
shirt always wear a white collar and wristbands. The hat should
always be black; and caps and straw-hats are only admissible in


If spectacles are necessary, they should be of the best and
lightest make, and mounted in gold, or blue steel. For weak sight,
blue or smoke-colored glasses are the best; green glasses are

A gentleman should never be seen in the street without gloves.
Worsted or cotton gloves are not permissible. A man's clothes
should always be well brushed, and never threadbare or shabby. No
gentleman can afford to wear shabby clothes.

For the country, or the foreign tour, a gentleman will select a
costume of some light woolen material, flannel shirts, thick
boots, and everything to correspond. Dandyism is never more out of
place than on the glacier, or among the Norwegian salmon

There are three things one should consult in the matter of dress
if one would always appear like a gentleman--viz., expense,
comfort, and society. If there is one thing in this world about
which we can entertain any degree of moral certainty, it is that
we must pay our tailor's bills. If, therefore, our means are
disproportionate to our wants, we must remember the old proverb,
"Cut your coat according to your cloth," and dress as well as you
possibly can upon little money.


1. A GENTLEMAN must always hand a lady a chair, open the door for
her to pass in or out, remove anything that may be in her way, and
pick up anything she may drop, even if she is an entire stranger
to him.

2. A gentleman or lady will never look over the shoulder of
another who is either reading or writing.

3. No gentleman or lady will ever be guilty of personality in
conversation. No wit, however keen; no sarcasm, however humorous,
can make personal remarks anything but rude and vulgar.

4. A gentleman, in passing a lady where he must stand aside to
give her space, must always remove his hat, and incline his head

5. A lady, in such a case, must always acknowledge the courtesy by
a slight bow.

6. Exaggeration trespasses so closely upon falsehood that it is
not safe to trust it. To adhere strictly to truth can never lead
into error.

7. Conceit is the vice or folly of the shallow-minded; so if you
would not be thought so avoid boasting or affectations of any
kind. The truly wise man is modest, and the braggart and coxcomb
are valued but little.

8. It is unladylike to stand with arms a-kimbo or folded.

9. It is a mark of low breeding to fidget either with the hands or
feet; to play with the watch-chain, toss the gloves, suck the head
of a cane or handle of a parasol, or to fuss with a collar or
necktie. Nothing is a more certain sign of gentle breeding than
quiet ease without stiffness or fidgetting.

10. To swing the foot, or tap monotonously with the feet, to drum
with the fingers on a table or window, are all breaches of

11. It is ill-bred to speak of persons with whom you are but
slightly acquainted by their first name.

12. No true lady will ever allow herself to speak of a gentleman
by his surname without a prefix. To hear a lady talking of Holmes
or Warren, instead of Mr. Holmes or Dr. Warren, gives the
impression that she is low-bred.

13. No gentleman will ever criticize a wine offered to him, no
matter how poor it may be. We give an instance of undaunted
etiquette, which proves to what an extent a well-bred man may
carry his courtesy: "In England during the French Revolution, the
Duke of Bedford invited the emigrant Duc de Grammont to a splendid
dinner, one of those magnificent entertainments which Englishmen
pride themselves on giving to crowned heads, and their good
feeling prompts them to offer to exiles. During dessert, a bottle
of Constantia was produced, which for age and flavor was supposed
to be matchless. It was liquid gold in a crystal flagon--a ray of
the sun descending into a goblet; it was nectar which was worthy
of Jove, and in which Bacchus would have revelled. The noble head
of the house of Russell himself helped his guest to a glass of
this choice wine, and de Grammont, on tasting it, declared it to
be excellent. The Duke of Bedford, anxious to judge of its
quality, poured out a glass, which no sooner approached his lips
than, with a horrible contortion, he exclaimed: 'Why, what on
earth is this?' The butler approached, took the bottle and applied
it to his nostrils, and, to the dismay of his master, pronounced
it to be castor-oil. The Duc de Grammont had swallowed this horrid
draught without wincing."

14. Flattery is a breach of etiquette. Johnson says: "Of all wild
beasts, preserve me from a tyrant; and of all tame, a flatterer."

15. No gentleman may ever break an engagement, whether it be one
of business or pleasure, with a lady, or with another gentleman.
If not blessed with a retentive memory, he must carry a note-book
and record therein all his appointments, guarding, by frequent
reference, against making two for the same day and hour. To break
an engagement with a lady is almost certain to give lasting
offence, and with good cause.

16. Irritability is a breach of good manners. Watts says: "To be
angry about trifles is mean and childish; to rage and be furious
is brutish, and to maintain perpetual wrath is akin to the
practice and temper of fiends; but to prevent and suppress rising
resentment is wise and glorious, is manly and divine."

17. Nothing marks a gentleman more truly than a strict punctuality.
To keep another waiting is a breach of etiquette, as well as often a
positive unkindness.

18. "Fine feathers make fine birds," the old proverb tells us; but
no amount of fine dressing will ever _make_ a lady. True
politeness, gentle courtesy and refinement may be as marked in a
lady wearing a calico dress and a sun-bonnet as in one in full
gala dress. Mrs. Thorpe, the celebrated English authoress, tells
of an interview with Mrs. Washington, than whom no more perfect
lady, in the true acceptance of the term, ever lived. She says:
"As Mrs. Washington was said to be so grand a lady, we thought we
must put on our best bibs and bands; so we dressed ourselves in
our most elegant ruffles and silks, and were introduced to her
ladyship; and don't you think we found her knitting, and with her
check apron on! She received us _very graciously and easily_; but
after the compliments were over, she resumed her knitting. There
we were without a stitch of work, and sitting in state; but
General Washinton's lady, with her own hands, was knitting
stockings for her husband."

19. To answer a civil question rudely, or even impatiently, is a
gross breach of etiquette. Even if it inconveniences you or
interrupts you, it will take no longer to answer kindly or
politely than to wound or offend by crustiness.

20. No gentleman may ever refuse an apology. No matter how great
the offence, how deep the resentment, an apology can never be
rejected. It may not again revive friendship; but it must prevent

21. It is a breach of etiquette to intrude upon a business man
during business hours.

22. An invalid, an elderly person, or a lady must be given the
most comfortable chair in the room, must be allowed to select the
light and temperature, and no true lady or gentleman will ever
object to the exercise of the privilege.

23. It is a breach of etiquette, as well as an impertinence ever
to question a child or servant upon family affairs.

24. It is a breach of etiquette to examine a card-basket. It is
true they are generally exposed in the drawing-room; but no true
lady or gentleman will ever turn them over.

25. It is a breach of etiquette to consult a watch when in
company. To do so, and then take leave, is an absolute
impertinence, as a pleasant circle may be broken at an early hour,
under the impression that "it must be late; Mr. C--- hurried away
so, when he saw what time it was."

26. It is a breach of etiquette when in company to try to attract
the attention of one person by signals, a cough, a poke, or a
nudge. Any appearance, indeed, of privacy or mystery is rude in

27. It is a breach of etiquette to assume a lazy, lounging
attitude in company. If any one is too weak or too ill to sit up
and assume a proper position, he had better stay at home until he
is stronger or in better health.

28. Mysterious allusions are rude.

29. It is a breach of etiquette, in general conversation, to refer
to incidents known to only one of the company, thus forcing a
species of _tete-a-tete_, and withdrawing a perhaps unwilling
partner from the general society.

30. Cards of ceremony must be answered either by a call, a letter,
or a return card, within a week after their reception.

32. New-Year's calls must be made in person. It is a breach of
etiquette to send a card, unless prevented by illness from

32. Never rise to take leave in the midst of an interesting
conversation; wait until there is a pause, and then withdraw, with
as little disturbance as possible.

33. If you are calling, and another person enters, never offer the
chair assigned you by the lady of the house; it is her privilege
to decide where to place her guests, and an impertinence on your
part to usurp her place.

34. A gentleman will never talk of his business affairs to a lady,
nor a lady weary her gentlemen friends by an account of her
domestic affairs.

35. The only gifts that may be offered or accepted between ladies
and gentlemen who are not related or engaged are books, flowers,
music, or confectionary. A lady who accepts costly presents of
jewelry puts herself under an obligation that she may find
troublesome, and no true gentleman will expose a lady to the pain
of refusing an improper gift of this kind.

36. In entering a room filled with people, it is etiquette to bow
slightly, as a general salutation, before speaking to each of
those assembled.

37. It is etiquette, before taking a place at table, to say "Good-
morning," or "Good-evening," to those in the room before you, and
especially to those who preside over the meal.

38. It is a breach of etiquette to go into company with the breath
tainted by eating onions, garlic, cheese, or any other strong-
scented food.

39. It is a breach of etiquette for a gentleman to enter a lady's
presence smelling of tobacco or wine.

40. It is a breach of etiquette to send a present hoping for

41. It is a breach of etiquette ever to refer to a gift you have
made, a favor you have granted, or an obligation of any kind under
which another lies with regard to you.

42. It is a breach of etiquette, and shows a sad want of true
delicacy, to return a gift very soon. An obligation of that kind,
if accepted at all, must not be thrust back at once in the donor's

43. It is a breach of etiquette for a husband or wife to speak of
each other by their initial letter. When you hear a lady saying,
"B., gave me this," or a gentleman saying, "I always refer such
matters to Mrs. P.," you may rest assured, whatever their social
station, they are low-bred.

44. "Civility," says Lord Chesterfield, "is particularly due to
all women; and remember that no provocation whatsoever can justify
any man in not being civil to every woman; and the greatest man
would justly be reckoned a brute if he were not civil to the
meanest woman. It is due to their sex, and is the only protection
they have against the superior strength of ours."

45. Too great familiarity towards a new acquaintance is a breach
of etiquette. You are less likely to offend by being too

46. To notice, by look or word, any deformity, any scar of
misfortune to the face or figure of a friend, in not only a breach
of etiquette of the grossest kind, but is a want of humanity and
good feeling as well.

47. It is a breach of etiquette, when offering a gift, to
represent it as valueless, or useless to yourself. "If you do not
have it, the pigs will," is a homely old proverb in such cases,
not acceptable in polite society.

48. It is a breach of etiquette to laugh at your own wit. If
others will not do that for you, you had better let your remark
pass unnoticed.

49. It is a breach of etiquette to lean heavily upon a table; and
also to tip a chair to and fro when you are talking; and you will
be justly punished if you find yourself sprawling on the floor
with the chair on top of you.

50. It is a breach of etiquette to write your own remarks in a
borrowed book.

51. _Scolding_ is ill-bred.

52. It is a breach of etiquette for a gentleman to keep his hat on
when handing a lady to a carriage.

53. The man who will insult his inferiors is a boor at heart,
however polished he may appear amongst his equals, or however
deferential to his superiors.

54. It is a breach of etiquette to display any bashfulness in
company. Lord Chesterfield says: "As for the _mauvaise honte_, I
hope you are above it. Your figure is like other people's; I
suppose you will care that your dress shall be so too, and to
avoid any singularity. What, then, should you be ashamed of? And
why not go into a mixed company with as much ease and as little
concern as you would go into your own room? Vice and ignorance are
the only things I know which one ought to be ashamed of; keep
clear of them, and you may go anywhere without fear or concern.
I have known some people who, from feeling the pain and
inconvenience of this _mauvaise honte_, have rushed into the other
extreme, and turned impudent, as cowards sometimes grow desperate
from the excess of danger; but this, too, is carefully to be
avoided, there being nothing more generally shocking than
impudence. The medium between the two extremes marks out the well-
bred man; he feels himself firm and easy in all companies; is
modest without being bashful, and steady without being impudent;
if he is a stranger, he observes with care the manners and ways of
the people most esteemed at that place, and conforms to them with

55. It is a breach of etiquette to wear an air of abstraction in
society if your mind is really so absorbed that you cannot pay
attention to what is going on around you, you had better stay at
home. An absent mind is much more frequently a proof of self-
conceit than of genius.

56. Eccentricity of any kind is in bad taste.

57. To imitate the manners, voice, attitude, or gestures of great
men were a folly almost too absurd to mention if it were not so
common. Many persons, from a real or fancied personal resemblance
to some celebrity, will ape their manners also, as if mere
appearance would make them equally distinguished.

58. It is wiser, if you have met with reverses, to withdraw
yourself from society than to have society withdraw from you.

59. It is a breach of etiquette to assume pedantic airs; to talk
of the Latin and Greek authors, and quote in those languages.

60. It is a breach of etiquette to make a quotation in a foreign
language and then translate it, thereby giving your listeners to
understand that you do not consider them as well informed as

61. Shakespeare says:
            "To thine own self be true,
  And it must follow, as the night the day,
  Thou canst not then be false to any man."

62. It is a breach of etiquette to contradict any one.

63. The man who would suffer himself to speak a word against a
woman, or to rail at women generally, deserves a rebuke recently
given to a coxcomb at an English dinner-party, who was checked in
his loud abuse of the sex by one of the company, who said: "I hope
it is the gentleman's own mother and sisters who are referred to,
and not ours."

64. If you try to make yourself appear more important than you
really are, you run the risk of being considered less so.

65. Marston says: "I, me, and mine, should be bowed out of genteel
circles. Egotism adorns no one."

66. It is a breach of etiquette to offer a partner in dancing an
ungloved hand.

67. Spitting is as vulgar as it is disgusting.

68. "The scholar, without good breeding, is a pedant; the
philosopher, a cynic; the soldier, a brute; and every man
disagreeable," says Chesterfield.

69. It is a breach of etiquette  to betray an implied or
involuntary confidence, even if you have not been bound to

70. Bishop Beveridge says: "Never speak of a man's virtues before
his face, nor of his faults behind his back."

71. "In private, watch your thoughts; in your family, watch your
temper; in society, watch your tongue."

72. "To arrive at the heart of true courtesy," says a modern
writer, "separate the onld English titles for the well-bred; they
were the _gentle_-man and _gentle_-woman."

73. It is better to live alone than in low company. If you cannot
keep good company, keep none.

74. Sterne thus defines courtship: "True courtship consists in a
number of quiet, gentlemanly attentions; not so pointed as to
alarm, not so vague as to be misunderstood."

75. It is a breach of etiquette to enter a room noisily, slamming
the door, or stamping heavily upon the floor.

76. It is a breach of etiquette to make violent or abrupt

77. It is a breach of etiquette  to neglect calling upon your
friends. "Visiting," says a French writer, "forms the chord which
binds society together, and it is so firmly tied that were the
knot severed, society would perish."

78. It is a breach of etiquette to select the route when walking
with a lady, unless she has requested you to do so.

79. It is ill-bred to refuse the last piece on the plate or dish,
if it is offered to you, as it implies a fear that there is no
more in the pantry.

80. It is a breach of etiquette to undertake any commission for a
friend and neglect to perform it. Forgetfulness is no excuse.

81. It is a breach of etiquette to answer a serious remark by a
flippant one.

82. Practical joking is a breach of etiquette that cannot be too
severely censured.

83. It is a breach of etiquette to read when there is any other
person present. In the family circle, a member who opens a book
should apologize for and explain his apparent rudeness, if obliged
to study or refer to the volume.

84. It is a breach of etiquette to yawn.

85. It is a breach of etiquette to blow the nose loudly.

86. It is a breach of etiquette to suck the teeth.

87. It is a breach of etiquette  to pick the teeth or clean the
nails in company.

88. It is a breach of etiquette to speak much of your own

89. It is a gross breach of etiquette to pass between two persons
who are conversing together.

90. It is a breach of etiquette to pass _before_ anybody. If
actually necessary, it must be done with an apology.

91. It is a breach of etiquette to urge wine upon a guest who has
already declined to drink.

92. It is a breach of etiquette to write a letter of
congratulation upon mourning paper, even if it is habitually used.

93. It is a breach of etiquette to call a new acquaintance by the
Christian name, unless requested to do so.

94. If you write requesting an autograph, it is a breach of
etiquette to omit to enclose a postage-stamp for the reply.

95. Ladies should avoid the use of strong perfumes. They are
unpleasant to nauseating to some persons; and it is a breach of
etiquette to annoy other people.

96. It is a breach of etiquette to lend a borrowed book, unless
you have the special permission of the owner to do so.

97. It is a breach of etiquette, as well as a most dangerous
experiment, to recommend remedies to an invalid who is under the
care of a physician.

98. A lady commits a breach of etiquette that amounts to a gross
impropriety by calling upon a gentleman, excepting upon business,
at his place of business. Even relatives, unless in the immediate
family, cannot receive calls from ladies at home.

99. Gentlemen should never stand upon the hearthrug with their
backs to the fire, either in a friend's house or their own.

100. Forgetfulness is a breach of etiquette. It is impossible to
be polite without cultivating a good memory. The absent or self-
absorbed person who forgets the names of his next-door neighbors,
recalls unlucky topics, confuses the personal relationships of his
personal friends, speaks of the dead as if they were still living,
talks of peole in their hearing, and commits a hundred such
blunders without any malevolent intention, is sure to make enemies
for himself, and to wound the feelings of others. Carelessness,
carried to a certain pitch, becomes unchristian. "It is not well,"
says an old proverb, "to talk of the gallows to a man whose father
was hanged." Some persons are so notoriously absent or forgetful,
that their friends will say of them: "We must not tell B---; he is
certain to tread on somebody's corns. We must ask him some evening
when we are alone."


*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Frost's Laws and By-Laws of American Society
 - A condensed but thorough treatise on etiquette and its usages in America, containing plain and reliable directions for deportment in every situation in life." ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.