Friday, September 21, 2018

Etiquette and a Vivacious Duchess

Duchess Anastasia of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (nee Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna Romanova of Russia) in her costume for the “Ball at the Winter Palace” in 1903 — “Prior to leaving for Cannes the Grand Duchess Anastasia acted as chaperon in Paris for a week for Mrs. Grahamme-White, formerly Dorothy Taylor, and the winsome American wife of the British aviator. The towering “Flatiron” form of the grand duchess, who is six feet two inches tall, and insists upon wearing futurist gowns of glaring colors, was a familiar figure at a smart sans souci tango palace, and Ciros restaurant. The grand duchess prides herself on her extensive American acquaintanceship.” – Photo source Pinterest
Royalty Leaving France for Winter 
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American Society Leaders Have Lost the 
Grand Dukes and Duchesses

PARIS, Dec. 27. —The American society leaders here have lost their Russian Grand Dukes and Grand Duchesses, and with their departure for different parts of Europe the winter’s social whirl has materially slackened. The greatest loss has been caused by the departure of the Grand Duchess Anastasia of Mecklenberg-Schwerin to the Rivera after spending a few brisk months as the chief guest at the tea and supper tango parties. These affairs, which have been given in the majority by Americans, proved the liveliest feature of the season. Prior to leaving for Cannes the Grand Duchess Anastasia acted as chaperon in Paris for a week for Mrs. Grahamme-White, formerly Dorothy Taylor, and the winsome American wife of the British aviator. The towering “Flatiron” form of the Grand Duchess, who is six feet, two inches, tall, and insists upon wearing futurist gowns of glaring colors, was a familiar figure at a smart sans souci tango palace, and Ciros restaurant. The Grand Duchess prides herself on her extensive American acquaintanceship. 

Since the opening of the present season, she has met in ball rooms and at dinner tables Mrs. W. B. Leeds, Anthony Drexel, Duchess De La Rochefocauld, nee Mitchell; Princess Albert Radziwill, Countess Stanislas De Castellane, nee Terry; Mr. and Mrs. Perry Belmont, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Lehr, and Mrs. Moncurex Robinson, as well as numerous less prominent members of the American colony. Although 53 years old, the Grand Duchess is still vivacious as a kitten and claims to be the best royal tango dancer in Europe. Her oft recurring desire for a social fling forces her to cling to Paris, because some years ago the Kaiser banned her from the Prussian court, and she rarely sees her daughter, the wife of the Crown Prince. 

She is also ostracized by other European courts and the only people who tolerate her socially are the French and American hostesses, who regard her battering of court etiquette only with amusement. Paris makes full allowance for her effervescent Romanoff spirits. Just as the young Russian Princess, Marie, had to fly to Paris recently, because she could not tolerate the stiff, unbending ceremony forced upon her at Stockholm, after her marriage to Prince Frederick of Sweden, so the Grand Duchess of Mecklenberg-Schwerin, who before her marriage was Anastasia Michailovna, could not help breaking the bonds of German court restraint and flitting to Paris for social freedom. She plans entertaining on a large scale this winter in her villa at Cannes, which is always an open house to American guests.— Morning Press, 1913



Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Fashionable Etiquette and Hypnosis

Was she hypnotized? “Kitty” dances the tango on television’s Mr. Selfridge — Argentine tango is a musical genre and accompanying social dance originating at the end of the 19th century in the suburbs of Buenos Aires and Montevideo. 
Tango Dance Etiquette 101: Respect ... the person you are dancing with, Respect ... the culture and heritage of Tango, Respect ... the music and the band, Respect ... the people around you. 
Photo credit Pinterest, Etiquette tips from “Tango Dance Concepts”


Society Takes Up Hypnotic Dancing
PARIS, Feb. 19. —Hypnotism applied to dancing is the latest Parisian fad. It was launched last night at a fashionable ball by Mrs. Caro Campbell and Senorlta Umbra Luigini, two of the most beautiful leaders of fashionable society this season. The intricacies of the tango and the complications of the fox trot will no longer be unapproachable by the uninitiated If the new "art” proves what its patronesses claim it to be. All that is needed, they say, is a few minutes of hypnotism practiced upon a willing devotee. — International News Service, 1920
Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia@ Etiquette Encyclopedia 

Dressing Etiquette at Versailles

Another Valet of the Wardrobe brought a clean shirt, but he had no right to hand it to the persons who were to put it on the King. The honor of handing the clean shirt to those persona was reserved to the sons and daughters of France, or, in their absence, to the Princes of the Blood or those legitimatized, or in default of these, to the Grand Chamberlain or the First Gentleman of the Bedchamber.

A hundred years ago, the Court of France was ruled by an etiquette so pompous and ceremonious as to make the King’s life a burden to himself and a jest to a philosopher. He was never alone, except at rare intervals. The eyes of forty or fifty persons saw him dress and undress, and the operation of putting on his shirt was something fearful. The Grand Master of the Wardrobe drew off the King’s nightshirt by the right arm, and the First Valet of the Wardrobe by the left arm, and both of them united in handing the nightshirt to an officer of the wardrobe. Another Valet of the Wardrobe brought a clean shirt, but he had no right to hand it to the persons who were to put it on the King. The honor of handing the clean shirt to those persona was reserved to the sons and daughters of France, or, in their absence, to the Princes of the Blood or those legitimatized, or in default of these, to the Grand Chamberlain or the First Gentleman of the Bedchamber. The shirt having been regularly and formally delivered, the First Valet of the Wardrobe and the First Valet de Chambre held up the garment by the right and left sleeves respectively, while two other valets extended a dressing gown in front of the King to serve as a screen. Behind this screen, his Majesty at last got the shirt on his back. Every day, immediately after being dressed, the King said his prayers. And it is to be hoped that he never failed to offer up a devout thanksgiving for having passed safely through the awful process of putting on his shirt, and that the coming man, would be able to make for the coming King, shirts that could be put on with more ease and less ceremony. – The Morning Union, 1883


Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

The Etiquette of Dance, 1860

The greatest familiarity between persons of opposite sexes, is, a gentleman placing one hand on a lady’s waist, while she rests one hand on his shoulder and holds his disengaged hand in the other. 


Mrs. Swisshelm on Dancing – It is worthy of note, that those churches and people who most strenuously oppose dancing, have already encouraged and practiced it under other names. Like the temperance man who would not drink cider, but had no objection to a glass of apple juice, our opponents of dancing have their children taught the art under the name of Calisthenics, and practice it when it is called Plays. For it is a remarkable fact, that those old time favorites of religious communities, ‘Dear Sister Phoebe,’ ‘Ring Round Rosy,’ ‘All a Marching to Quebec,’ ‘The White Cockade,’ ‘Copenhagen,’ etc., etc., are, every one of them, cotillions and contra dances, performed to vocal and instrumental music. 

The difference between the religious dance, is that in the former, every man in the room is compelled, on pain of breach of etiquette, to kiss every woman in the room; and, vice versa, that it is quite in order for married women to sit down on the knees of young gentlemen, put their arms around their necks, bring two pair of lips together with a smack, and do any amount of hugging. While, in a profane dance, even those of most doubtful propriety, the greatest familiarity between persons of opposite sexes, is, a gentleman placing one hand on a lady’s waist, while she rests one hand on his shoulder and holds his disengaged hand in the other. The churches, therefore, who set up rules against dancing, are fairly and squarely committed to the doctrine that promiscuous dancing is all right, and pious, and innocent, provided it is accompanied by promiscuous kissing, with a suitable amount of hugging and general rough and tumble. While, without these refining and elevating additions it is an evil on evil, and that continually. 

There is no escaping this conclusion, for the anti-dancing churches and Christians are too openly committed in favor of these vulgar plays for an intelligent man to deny, that either they have acted blindly, or that the kissing and hugging sanctifies the dancing. Now, since all the experience of the past proves that people will dance, even grave and reverend deacons, we are in favor of the dancing without the etceteras. But, apart from all comparisons, we regard dancing as a positive good, as something which requires no apology, but is inherently right in itself, and efficient means of perfecting, refining and cultivating the crowning work of God’s creation, a means appointed and directly approved by the Creator himself! It is liable to abuse, and the object of reformers should be to regulate, not to abolish it. – St. Cloud Democrat, 1860


Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Etiquette and the Royal Breakfast

 The Prince of Wales’ set recently adopted the idea from the French and all London’s rapidly taking up the custom! – No doubt the Americans who have gone to England to help celebrate the Queen's Jubilee will return imbued with the idea that soup for breakfast is the only proper and polite thing. The custom has long been prevalent in France, and is now being introduced in London.


The Prince’s New Breakfast 
The Prince of Wales Has Recently Set the Fashion 

No doubt the Americans who have gone to England to help celebrate the Queen's Jubilee will return imbued with the idea that soup for breakfast is the only proper and polite thing. The custom has long been prevalent in France, and is now being introduced in London. “At all the first-class cafés in Paris,” says a gentleman recently returned from the other side, “the patrons can get soups of various kinds for breakfast, and a great many Parisians sip soup before putting anything more substantial in their stomachs. In London, two months ago, Henry White, the swell secretary of the American legation, invited me to breakfast, and the first thing on the menu was soup. He told me that the Prince of Wales’ set had recently adopted the idea from the French and that all London was rapidly taking up the custom.” 


Mr. White set the pace for Americans over there, and whether or not he entertains all of his countrymen who are flocking to the Queen’s Jubilee, he can introduce enough of them to this new fad to cause the whole outfit to come back home singing its praises. “It is really one of the most sensible gastronomic innovations I can imagine. Soup, when properly made, is both soothing and stimulating. The over-taxed stomach of the average American needs both to be soothed and stimulated the first thing in the morning. Therefore, I look for the soup idea to become immediately popular when it is brought over by our tourists. Doubtless they will invent a name for it, as the fashionable folk of this country are afraid to risk their standing among the gourmets by eating for breakfast a dish with so plain and vulgar a name as ‘soup’.” – Los Angeles Herald, 1897


Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

British Coronation Etiquette – King Henry V

Tom Hiddleston portraying Henry V in the 2012 British television film based on the play of the same name by William Shakespeare. It was the fourth film in the series of television films called “The Hollow Crown.”

Remarkable incidents in this most important occasion of a British ruler’s life. Striking features of ceremony from the earliest day to the last great Coronation event of the 19th Century
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The Coronation of England’s Henry V

In the age of the Plantagenets, Tudors and under the Stuarts, until the Coronation of James II, it was customary for Kings to reside in the Tower of London for some time, previous to the Coronation. On the Saturday before the Coronation, the Sovereign went from Westminster to the Tower of London, attended by great numbers of the Nobility and civic dignitaries, and by those people who were to be Knighted, and who watched their arms that night. Each squire had a chamber allotted him, and a bath in which he bathed. The ensuing day after mass, the Sovereign created them Knights. After their investiture they were permitted to sit down in the King's presence, but during the whole time of dinner, they were rot allowed to partake of any part, of the entertainment. The Queens in their own right, Mary and Elizabeth, though they girded the swords on the Knights with their own-hands, did not give the accolade or blow, which is the determinate action that impresses the character of Knighthood. At both Coronations, Henry, Earl of Arundel, performed this office. A copy of his appointment is to be found in Rymer.

Henry V was Crowned on the 9th of April, 1413. Katherine of France, the Queen of Henry V, was Crowned on the 24th of February, 1420. The account which Holinshed gives of the magnificence displayed upon this occasion is far too characteristic of the age to be omitted: “After the great solemnization of the foresaid Coronation in the church of St. Peter’s, at Westminster, was ended, the Queene was conveied into the great Hall of Westminster, and there set to dinner. Upon whose right hand sat, at the end of the table, the Archbishop of Canterbury and Henrie surnamed the Rich, Cardinall of Winchester. 

Upon the left hand of the Queene sat the King of Scots in his estate who was served with covered masse, as were the foresaid Bishops, but yet after them. Upon the left hand, next to the cupboard, sat the maoir and his brethren, the aldermen of London. The Bishops began the table, against the Barons of the Cinque Ports; and the Ladies against the maior. These, with, others, ordered the service, and, for the first course, brawne in mustard, eels in burneur, pike in herbage, fuiment with balien, lamprie powdered, trout, codling, plaice fried, martine fried trout, codling, plaice fried crabs, leech lumbard flourished tartes and a device called a pelican, sitting on hir nest, with hir birds and an image of St. Katherine holding a booke and disputing with doctors. 

“The second course was gellie coloured with columbine flowers, whits potage or creame of almonde, breame of the sea, conger, cheuen, barbil, and roch, fresh salmon, haliba, gurnard, rochet broilee, smelts, fried, crevis, or lobster, leechdamaske, with the King's posie flourished thereon. The third course was dates in compost, creame motle, carp deore, turbut, tench perch with goion, fresh turgion with welks, porperous rosted, creves da cau doure, branis, eeles rosted with lamprie, a leech, called the white leech, flourished with hawthorne leaves and red hawes; a marchpane garnished with diverse figures of angels.”– San Francisco Call, 1901

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia 

Monday, September 10, 2018

Etiquette for Salt And Such

Individual salt cellars have the ability to elevate any place setting. They can take a look from “How nice...” to “How elegant!” Or, from “Drabulous to fabulous!” as a friend once enthused. And though we are not suggesting that salts and peppers are set on a table merely for decorative purposes, Etiquipedia kindly requests that you politely taste your food first, prior to adding anything like salt. Even after tasting the food, do not send a “non-verbal” complaint to the host or hostess by making a show of heavily salting and peppering your meal. As a thoughtful guest, please remember that you are not there to eat, but to dine and enjoy the company of your hosts.
– Photo of a Michael Aram salt cellar and salt spoon


Salt Etiquette, 
with a Touch of Pepper

🍴Polite guests always taste food prior to adding salt –or adding any spice or condiment– out of respect and graciousness to those who have prepared a meal, or invited one to a meal.

🍴If you are a guest, even after tasting the food, take care not make a show of salting your food. This is rude. It implies that the meal is “less than it should be.” It also could imply that you have an unsophisticated palate and are not able to taste subtle flavors in the meal. If invited to dinner in a private home, “non-verbal complaints” like salting food before tasting, or pouring catsup all over your food, is most impolite.


🍴In some countries, like Portugal, it is impolite to even ask for salt. It is considered an insult to the chef, whether you are a guest in someone’s home, or in restaurants.  If salt, pepper, other spices or condiments are not on the table, do not ask for them to be brought to you.

🍴The etiquette rule above applies in the reverse situation, as well. If one is hosting someone from another culture or country, and they prefer to have salt and pepper at the table, though it is not the norm for you, feel free to provide these items to make your guests feel more welcome. 

🍴 If invited as a guest to eat in a restaurant, or perhaps a wedding reception or birthday celebration, and someone else is paying the tab, such non-verbal complaints about the meal are impolite, as well. Remember, you are a guest!

🍴If asked to pass the salt, always pass it with the pepper, so that the two do not get separated.

🍴 Always say, "Excuse me" if you need to reach in front of someone caught up in conversation, when passing salt (or anything else) at the table.

🍴Be aware of those around you at the table. If the salt is nearest you (this also applies to butter, rolls, etc...) don't allow yourself to be so caught up or lost in your conversation, that someone has to reach in front of you to pass the requested item.


🍴 Judith Martin shakes out “The Salt and Pepper Question”
Q: In a set of identical salt and pepper shakers, should the salt be placed in the shaker with one or two holes? My friend's feeling is that the salt is used more, therefore it should go in the two-hole shaker; I feel that because it pours faster, the salt belongs in the shaker with one hole. We resolve to abide by your decision. 
A: If Miss Manners were to tell you, in a blustery way, to use salt cellars and pepper grinders, would you consider it a cop-out, as it were? Yes, of course you would. The truth is that Miss Manners didn't know that salt pours faster than pepper, and is now sitting here with little black and white specks all over her lap. Just a minute. (Brush, brush, brush.) 
All right now, the decision is that your friend's reasoning is incorrect, but her conclusion is correct. (Miss Manners used to get her arithmetic papers back with that remark.) Salt goes in the two-hole shaker, not because it is used more often, but because more of it is used. Put another way; over-peppered food tastes worse than over-salted food. – Miss Manners, Copyright (c) 1979 and United Feature Syndicate 


Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia