Monday, June 6, 2016

American vs Korean Etiquette

"Among other things, she had made a very excellent and rather large cake, which she expected to distribute in small slices to her callers."



Eastern Etiquette Met Western Etiquette, on New Year's Day, Leaving One Gentleman Sick
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A Native's Call Upon an American Lady

The native Koreans, who have become familiar with foreigners and their ways, take very readily to the custom of calling and eating on New Year's day. and one American lady had a very peculiar experience with a native official in Seoul on New Year's day. 

She was keeping open house and had made preparations for receiving her guests in the proper manner. Among other things, she had made a very excellent and rather large cake, which she expected to distribute in small slices to her callers. A party of native gentlemen arrived, and having given one of them a cup of tea, she placed this large cake before him, with an invitation to help himself. She then went with the others to another room and was gone some time.

When she returned she saw, to her horror, that her cake had all but disappeared. The native, according to his ideas of etiquette, had done his best not to leave any of the eatables set before him. The lady's vexation was banished by a feeling of pity for the poor fellow, who was quite sick from overfeeding. 

It is said that this call was his first and last that day. He declared to his his friends that foreigners must be "all stomach" If they could go from house to house and “eat that much every time." — London Mail, 1897


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