Saturday, July 2, 2016

Photographing Court Etiquette

Meeting the Monarch, Queen Victoria ... No longer would Royal Court etiquette be simply saved for posterity by painting or drawing.

Kings' and Queens' Smiles Canned
Fashions in Handshakes, in Court Etiquette and Other Ceremonies Filmed to be Handed Down 

PARIS— Historians, artists and novelists centuries hence will know just how the great civic pageants of the twentieth century in France looked, for an official cinematograph will record all government fetes and ceremonies. 

The municipal photographer's snapshots give excellent representations of Monarchs in regal gold and purple, visiting chieftains in gala attire and unpretentious frock-coated cabinet ministers, as they appear on solemn occasions, but no hint of the formalities etiquette requires— the regulation bows and handshakes of the time... These, the official cinematograph will supply. 

Through it counting generations will know just how a King receives a Prime Minister; It will register the smiles and gestures of royalty complimenting some famous author or actor; It will perpetuate for posterity's enjoyment the triumphal march of some Lord Mayor through glided reception halls followed by a retinue of obsequious liveried footmen. All these official yet private mysteries, usually hidden from the public, will yield their secrets to the privileged cinematograph operator. 

After he has exhibited these highly interesting records before some music hall audience they will be preserved among the municipal archives for the benefit of curious ages to come.  Special Cable to The Herald, 1907

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