Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Rigid Royal Spanish Etiquette


Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was Queen of Spain as the wife of King Alfonso XIII

A Nurse for the Baby Prince

Many say the etiquette of the Royal Spanish Court rivaled that of the French Court of Versailles. They may be correct, but then again they may have been on par for Royal Courts of the day. The January 19th report from a London newspaper tells us, "The Madrid correspondent of the Standard says that Spain's Queen Victoria wants to nurse her coming baby herself, but will not be allowed to do so, because it is contrary to Spanish etiquette. An English nurse has been engaged." – 1907


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

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Etiquette is Much More Than Rules

"Protocol is not there to dictate to you. It is there to help you." Barbara Bush 
Seeing Etiquette Through a Different Lens ... It’s Not Always About Which Fork to Use!

 by Hilary Robinson

There are occasions, when telling people that I provide training on the subject of Etiquette and Protocol, that they look at me like I have an extra head. Every now and then I can even see their internal dialogue written on their face: ‘that’s so old-fashioned’, ‘she’s clearly living in the past’, ‘oh no, she’s going to critique everything I say and do’. This last one is the most common; at a recent event the host of my table looked up as I approached and exclaimed, more-or-less in jest, ‘great, I’ve got the etiquette expert!’ (I don’t by the way, unless asked.)

I put these responses down to the fact that many people equate etiquette with ‘rules’ – rules that govern our every move, and get us into trouble if we don’t follow them.

Yes, there are rules when it comes to etiquette and protocol but though they can seem frivolous, they are actually very helpful. Many stem from common sense and are in place to help us navigate business and social settings; some are driven by interacting with other cultures; others, leftovers of bygone eras, fading into the past.

However, I believe, firmly, that etiquette is so much more than simply a set of rules. You can take your pick of words and phrases: etiquette, courtesy, civility, polite behaviour, consideration for others – but when it comes down to it, all of these ensure that we carry out our daily interactions – be they business meetings, hosting an event, or passing someone on the street – in a thoughtful, kind manner, which, in turn, shows others that we value their time and attention.

I don’t view the ‘rules’ as being stiff, old-fashioned directives. I see them, instead, as the tools we use to give us the confidence and freedom to interact with others under any, and all, circumstances. Sometimes it is about which fork to use – and if you know which fork to use you can ignore your place setting and pay attention to your guests.

And, the great thing about knowing the rules is knowing how, when and where you can break them.

Meet our newest contributor, Hilary Robinson, the Senior Trainer and Owner of Polished Professionals in Toronto, Canada. With her background, spent running events for Prime Ministers, CEOs and academics (in the UK and Canada), one might think that she’s all about following the rules. However, she prefers to train people to understand their parameters, what it means to follow them, what advantages there are in knowing how and when to bend them, and the value in using good manners to put others at ease. With 20 years working worldwide in events and communications, Hilary believes manners and courtesy are not only powerful communication tools but the foundations on which self-confidence and success grow. It's understanding that not all social or business situations are created equal, and knowing how to deal with those differences, that gives us our ability to be our best and to succeed. (Oh, and she’s completely passionate (and nerdy) about all this… if you have any questions feel free to ask!)

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

Saturday, August 27, 2016

French Court Etiquette Intervened

Henriette as Minerva holding a painting of her husband, Philippe de France

Incidents in the Lives of World-Famous Women —
How the Princess Henriette of England Just Missed Being Queen of France

Among the fair women who made the Court of Louis XIV famous for brilliancy and beauty, there were none lovelier than Henriette, Duchess d’Orleane. She was the daughter of Charles I of England and Henrietta Maria, and the wife of Philllppe, “the little Monsieur,” the King’s brother. 


When misfortune descended upon the royal House of Stuart the Princess Henriette was smuggled into France disguised as a vagabond in a ragged suit of boy’s clothes. She was restored to her mother, and although the exiled Queen was supremely happy to have her little daughter safe under her care, she was often driven to despair by tbeir extreme poverty. The little girl was many times forced to spend the day in bed because there was no fuel to burn. 

Anne of Austria, the Queen-Mother, supplied the English exiles with clothes and money, and, later on, invited them to the French Court. As the little Henriette approached young woman-hood she gave promise of becoming very beautiful. She is described in the following words by a contemporary: "Her air is as noble as her birth. Her hair is of a bright chestnut hue, and her complexion rivals that of the gayest flowers. The snowy whiteness of her skin betrays the lines from which she sprang. Her eyes are blue and brilliant, her lips ruddy, her throat beautiful, her arms and hands well made- Her charms show that she was born on a throne and is destined to return there.” 

She made her first public appearance at a ball given by Anne of Austria at the Louvre. When the gentlemen chose their partners for the opening dance the handsome young Louis of France offered his hand to the Princess of Mercoeur. The Queen-Mother sternly rebuked him for this breach of etiquette, saying: “You must dance first with the Princess Henriette of England.’’ Queen Henrietta Maria saw that the King was not pleased with this interference, and sought to mend matters by answering: "My daughter has hurt her foot and therefore cannot dance.” 

But Anne of Austria was determined that her son should obey the laws of Court etiquette and insisted. “Then Henriette and Louis shall sit out the dance together.” From that moment Louis formed a dislike for his cousin, blasting the fond hopes of the two Queens that he would ask Henriette to share his throne. Later that evening one of the Courtiers remarked upon the charms of the young English Princess. “I do not like little girls. She is much too thin,” was Louis’ reply. 

Though Louis was blind to the beauty of Henriette, his brother. Monsieur, was not. The young dandy determined that he would like to marry and have a Court of his own. The Duke made known his desire to the King, who laughed heartily and said; “You shall wed the Princess of England, for no one else wants her.”

Philippe was well pleased at this promise, and hastened to plead his cause with Henrietta Maria. He fell genuinely in love with his lovely cousin, and having gained the consent of her brother, Charles II, the wedding was celebrated at the Palais Royal without further delay. The young Duchess immediately became the central figure of gay Court life. She captivated all who approached her. “Never was there a Princess so fascinating,” the Abbe de Colsy has written. “Her whole person seemed full of charm. You feel interested in her, you love her without being able to help yourself.” 

Even King Louis fell beneath the spell of her beauty and charm. His sister-in-law became one of his dearest friends. He regretted the days when he had failed to recognize her charms and was all the more attentive because of his previous neglect. Had Louis' anger at having to sit out a dance with the Princess of England not blinded him to the beauty and charm of Henriette she might have been his Queen instead of Marie Therese. — By Eloise Farrington for the Los Angeles Herald, 1917

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


1905 Etiquette Decisions in Prussia

The Prussian government authorized the rigid prohibition of  the wearing of corsets during daily gymnastic exercises.


Prussian Etiquette Rulings

Government Rules That Station Master Should Salute Women Subordinates First

Associated Press, BERLIN, Oct. 21.— Among the odd decisions published today is that of the Prussian railway administration on a point of etiquette advanced by a station master on the Lower Rhine, who asked for a ruling as to whether the young women subordinates in his office should not recognize him first on the street instead of waiting to be saluted according to the prevailing customs. The government directed the station master to salute first. 


On another note, the principal of the girls' high school at Saarbruecken inquired of the provincial government, if she was authorized to forbid the young women to wear corsets during gymnastic exercises. The government authorized their rigid prohibition.–1905

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

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Delineator's "Lessons in Etiquette"

It could be called tact... If you know a fat girl with a slim sister, always mistake the fat one for the slim one, and vice versa
  • When a lady gives you her seat in a street car, thank her, but in such a manner that she will not be emboldened to open a conversation with you. 
  • Going down the aisle of a theater allow the lady to precede you, unless you are attending the play alone. In that case you go first. 
  • When some one calls you by phone and says: "Do you know who is talking?" and you answer that you do not, and the person continues to ask if you don't or can't guess, utter a joyous peal of laughter and say you know it is the sanitarium. Then hang up the receiver. 
  • If you are walking along the street, carrying packages in both hands, and meet a lady who speaks to you, hold the packages in your teeth while you lift your hat to her. 
  • If you know a fat girl with a slim sister, always mistake the fat one for the slim one, and vice versa. 
  • When waltzing with a lady who steps upon your toes, it is nice, if you have a wooden leg, to keep the foot of that leg where she will step upon it oftenest. You can do this unobtrusively with a little practice. — The Delineator, 1910

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

Business Etiquette Advice

Attitude is important. Impress the boss with the quality of your work rather than your personality. Be ambitious but don't push yourself on others.

Making Contacts 

Determine the type of job you want. Talk to your friends. What do they do? Discuss it with your instructors. Do research reading. What kind of a firm do you want to work in? Don't rely on your friends to get you a job. Use business associates for contacts. Use agencies. If you must make a "cold" contact, plan your approach. 

Attitude Is Important 

Don't be a clock-watcher. Try to do more than is asked of you. Make an effort to familiarize yourself with terms needed in office use. Admit mistakes. Think of your job as a stepping-stone to a better job. A job is what you make it. Sit and stagnate or develop it and in so doing advance yourself. You do yourself a favor by making yourself a better-than-average employee. Impress the boss with the quality of your work rather than your personality. Be ambitious but don't push yourself on others.

You and the Business World 

Appearance gives color to an office. Cleanliness and neatness are more important than expensive clothes. Extreme lines and bright colors are distracting in an office. Wear simple, well-pressed clothes —no bobby socks or excessive jewelry. Give special attention to hair and hands. 

Habits 

Be on time. Gum chewing and nibbling are not allowed. Don't slouch. Avoid mannerisms—hair twisting, and leg winding. Use the office phone in emergency only. Smile, be pleasant. Don't complain. Listen, do not talk too much. 

Policy 

Keep private life to yourself. Avoid office politics and religious discussions. Keep business life and recreation separate. Don't be interested in other people's work at the office. – The Corsair, Volume 17, 1945


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

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Etiquette, Golf and Kissing

Since the early days of the genteel game of golf, kissing was not permitted on the golf course. Public displays of affection were frowned upon, even in 1967,  
English Oldsters Ban Kissing

YORK, England (UPl)—Senior golf club members watched aghast from the clubhouse. They said what happened on the first tee “broke the club’s rules of etiquette.” So twenty young golfers, who had been given a reduced rate to play at the club, were banned because two sweethearts kissed on the first tee. – The Dessert Sun, 1967 



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

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Etiquette and "Good Form"

Among the notable guests at the Constitutional Centennial banquet in the Philadelphia Academy of Music, in September were the Chinese envoys who accompanied Count Mitkiewicz to this country...

What is Good Form? Differing Customs In Different Countries—Etiquette Among Various Peoples

That etiquette is sometimes arbitrary and not covered by the definition of common sense set to rule, is shown by the widely varying customs in different parts of the world. An American going up or down stairs in a public hotel  does not feel it incumbent on him to remove his hat if a lady should see him on the stairs. In Europe it would be considered very rude if a man did not uncover under such circumstance. An American, entering a parlor, expects the lady of the house to rise and greet him. 

In Spain, a lady would seem to forfeit her self-respect should she exhibit so much forwardness. No one ever saw a man and a woman arm in arm in the streets of a Spanish city without knowing they were foreigners. A Spanish husband never takes his wife's arm in public. Nor would a Spanish woman receive a male visitor alone. Such is the system of protection exercised over women by Hidalgo, grandee, tradesman and peasant in the sunny land of romance. 

Among the notable guests at the Constitutional Centennial banquet in the Philadelphia Academy of Music, in September were the Chinese envoys who accompanied Count Mitkiewicz to this country in connection with the concessions to a Philadelphia syndicate. During the evening a note was handed to the chief envoy, a grave looking. elderly man. He was troubled for a moment, and then made an elaborate apology in French for the rudeness of which he was compelled to be guilty, namely, the wearing of his spectacles in company long enough to read the note. It is a gross breach of etiquette for a Chinaman to wear eyeglasses or spectacles in company, and it is equally impolite to enter a room with the hat off. A gentleman of the Celestial Kingdom always remains covered to show his respect.

 Another piece of Chinese etiquette noticeable at the banquet was that, although the evening was fine, the envoys wore rubber overshoes until they readied the Academy cloakroom, and removed them prior to entering the amphitheater. Chinese etiquette forbids a man to enter a room with soiled shoes, and consequently, overshoes are worn until arriving at the house. 

An American would never think of removing his hat prior to speaking to any man on the street. In Holland, before speaking in the most humble individual out of doors a male uncovers. In Holland, too, men and women rarely purchase at the same stores, but in case where they do, if a woman discovers that men are assembled inside, she retires until they leave. A live American store-keeper would probably soon change this feature of Dutch etiquette. 

The Americans, English, Germans and Russians shake hands with a man bidding him welcome. An Arab’s greeting is to rub his cheek against that of the person he salutes and kisses him. A Frenchman welcomes a friend by embracing and kissing him, though by slow degrees this custom is being superseded. The Japanese customs are similar to those of China. It is not an unusual sight to see a number of Japanese remove their sandals, cross their hands and cry “Spare me!” when a great man passes, but the custom is rapidly going out of vogue since the leaven of enlightenment has been spreading through the land. 

A peculiar mark of esteem in Burma is to ask permission to smell a person's face, and then declare the perfume to be as sweet as some choice flower. The custom is confined to Burma and is not likely to spread. In America, politeness goes, as it should, before all else. One rule can be laid down for general observance where a person’s ideas of the proper thing to do are unsettled: let him make himself at home. He should do so in a manner to create some respect for home, unlike a young man who called at the office of a noted Philadelphian, somewhat famous for his straightforward utterances. “Make yourself at home for a few minutes," said the owner of the office to his visitor. The young man, having seated himself somewhat comfortably, but mistaking a table for a footstool, responded cheerfully; “I always make himself at home." “Then I pity the people at home," was the quick response.   –The Coronado mercury, 1890



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






Sunday, August 21, 2016

1930's Girl Scout Etiquette

Circa 1936 – Girl Scouts sell their famous cookies.

Girl Scout Rules
Girl Scouts of the United States are taught to observe the rules of the road and the etiquette of highways. One of the first regulations is not to be a "trail hog" and leave tin cans, fruit peelings, empty cracker boxes and paper along the pathway. The definition of a “trail hog” is one who does not stop to think how the thoroughfare and adjacent territory will look to the next traveler. – Coronado Eagle and Journal, 1930


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

Friday, August 19, 2016

Etiquette for Addressing Monarchs

Through the chaos of the Middle Ages, the Plantagenets rose to seize control of England. It was one of the most violent periods in history, famed for the Hundred Years’ War, the Peasants’ Revolt, and the beginning of the Wars of the Roses.


The usual forms of address for a King for much of the "Plantagenet era" in England were ‘your highness’ and ‘your Grace’. Richard II introduced the terms ‘your majesty’ and ‘your high majesty’ to the court vocabulary, having had a grander and more elaborate vision of kingship than his predecessors.

During the King's later reign, there are accounts of Richard II sitting in splendor on his throne after dinner, while glaring around the room at the courtiers assembled there. It is said that, whomever his gaze rested upon was to fall to their knees in humble appreciation of his royal awesomeness. Eventually wearing thin, in 1399 Richard was deposed by his cousin, Henry Bolingbroke, who took the throne as Henry IV, which abruptly ended an unbroken succession of Plantagenet kings since the 12th century.


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

Etiquette Addressing Monarchs

Through the chaos of the Middle Ages, the Plantagenets rose to seize control of England. It was one of the most violent periods in history, famed for the Hundred Years’ War, the Peasants’ Revolt, and the beginning of the Wars of the Roses.


The usual forms of address for a King for much of the "Plantagenet era" in England were ‘your highness’ and ‘your Grace’. Richard II introduced the terms ‘your majesty’ and ‘your high majesty’ to the court vocabulary, having had a grander and more elaborate vision of kingship than his predecessors.

During the King's later reign, there are accounts of Richard II sitting in splendor on his throne after dinner, while glaring around the room at the courtiers assembled there. It is said that, whomever his gaze rested upon was to fall to their knees in humble appreciation of his royal awesomeness. Eventually wearing thin, in 1399 Richard was deposed by his cousin, Henry Bolingbroke, who took the throne as Henry IV, which abruptly ended an unbroken succession of Plantagenet kings since the 12th century.


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

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Etiquette Creates a Pretty Picture

The little Princess asks for a drink of water; a maid of honor hands it to her with the elaborate etiquette prescribed by the formalities of the most rigidly ceremonious Court in Europe. 

The Story of “Las Meninas”

How One of Velázquez's Notable Pictures Came To Be Painted 


The story of "Las Meninas" is that Velasquez was painting a portrait of the Spanish King and Queen (who sat where the spectator is when he looks at the picture). Their little daughter, the Infanta Margarita, came in with her maids of honor, her dog and her dwarfs, accompanied by her duena and a courtier. The little Princess asks for a drink of water; a maid of honor hands it to her with the elaborate etiquette prescribed by the formalities of the most rigidly ceremonious Court in Europe. 

The scene presented so charming a picture, that the King desired Velasquez to paint it. The artist has included himself in the group at work upon a large canvas on which it is supposed he was painting a portrait of the King and Queen when the interruption occurred. The reflection of the King and Queen appears in the mirror at the end of the room, and the Chamberlain, Don Jose Nieto, stands outside the door drawing the curtain. The scene is, indeed, represented with such wonderful realism that a famous French critic said of it, "So complete is the illusion that, standing in front of 'Las Meninas' one is tempted to ask, ‘Where is the picture?'" —St. Nicholas, Madera Mercury, 1905

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

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Louis XVIII – Stickler for Etiquette

Louis XVIII, known as "The Desired" (le Désiré), was a Monarch of the House of Bourbon who ruled as King of France from 1814 to 1824. He spent 23 years in exile, from 1791 to 1814, during the French Revolution and the First French Empire, and then again in 1815, during the period known as "the Hundred Days" upon Napoleon I's return from Elba.
How a Bright Answer Banished a King’s Anger 

ONE of the problems that sorely perplexes those who employ spies is whether or not some particular spy is not selling to the enemy as much information as he gives his employer. When Louis XVIII returned to France after his exile he appointed as his minister of police, Fouche, who had served under his enemies. During a private conversation with Fouche, Louis asked him to be frank. “Tell me.” Louis said, "who was the spy who did you the best service when your men were watching me?” Fouche tried to evade replying, but was compelled to answer. "Well sire, if you insist on knowing, it was the Duc de Blacas." “How much did he get for the job?” the King smiled. "Two hundred thousand francs a year, sire.” "Ah!” the King cried with satisfaction. "That was the sum. He didn't cheat me. We went halves!” 

Stickler for Etiquette 

However free and easy Louis was as an exile, he was most punctilious in his demand that the Court etiquette be observed when he ascended the throne. One of Louis' ministers was M. de Corbiere. During a heated discussion one day, Corbiere, having his handkerchief and snuff box in his hand, unconsciously placed them on the King's table beside which he was sitting. The King seemed thunderstruck, and "looked daggers" at the offender. But Corbiere was an honest, simple Breton, who was not easily awakened to what he had done. Ignorant of the niceties of Court etiquette, he really didn’t know he had done anything very wrong. He was brought to a sense of something wrong by the furtive glances and expressive gestures of another of the men sitting nearby. Without haste, and with quiet gesture, Corbiere removed the offending handkerchief and snuff box from the King's table, remarking as he did so: "Sire, it would be very much better if you always had ministers who empty their pockets instead of those who fill them.” In his exile Louis had learned many things. One of these was to permit his spirit of fellowship full play. This witty apology pleased him, so he permitted his love of etiquette to vanish in a laugh that pardoned Corbiere.  – By Mark Stuyvesant, 1921

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

Monday, August 15, 2016

Etiquette and Defining Protocol

Benjamin Franklin at Versailles – Protocol sets the rules for seating groups of important people at a banquet, or for addressing dignitaries, or even for proper dress at ceremonies in foreign countries. 

Protocol and striped pants gave late- American, President Harry Truman, a "pain in the neck.” Few people in government would disagree with his sentiments, but protocol seems to he needed. Protocol is the code of diplomatic etiquette. It sets the rules for seating groups of important people at a banquet, or for addressing dignitaries, or even for proper dress at ceremonies in foreign countries. 

Protocol has been around for a long time. When Benjamin Franklin arrived at the court of Versailles, wigless and dressed in an old coat, he learned quickly that elegant court uniform was a must if he wanted to make a proper impression for the new "American Republic." The Desert Sun, 1975


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

Elizabethan Table Etiquette

"More polite in eating than the French, devouring less bread, but more meat, which they roast in perfection..."

Paul Hentzner, who was in England at the end of the reign of Elizabeth I, remarks of the people whom he saw that "they are more polite in eating than the French, devouring less bread, but more meat, which they roast in perfection. They put a good deal of sugar in their drink."

In his "Court and Country," 1618, Nicholas Breton gives an instructive account of the strict rules which were drawn up for observance in great households at that time, and says that the gentlemen who attended on great lords and ladies had enough to do to carry these orders out. 

Not a trencher must be laid or a napkin folded awry; not a dish misplaced; not a capon carved or a rabbit unlaced contrary to the usual practice; not a glass filled or a cup uncovered save at the appointed moment: everybody must stand, speak, and look according to regulation. –  William Carew Hazlitt's, “Old Cookery Books and Ancient Cuisine.”

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

Etiquette Rules for Beverages

Don't, when you drink, elevate your glass as if you were going to stand it inverted on your nose.

“It is not proper to drink with a spoon in the cup; nor should one, by-the-way, ever quite drain a cup or glass.

Don't, when you drink, elevate your glass as if you were going to stand it inverted on your nose. Bring the glass perpendicularly to the lips, and then lift it to a slight angle. Do this easily.

Drink sparingly while eating. It is far better for the digestion not to drink tea or coffee until the meal is finished. Drink gently, and do not pour it down your throat like water turned out of a pitcher.” – Excerpt From The Whitehouse Cookbook, 1887


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

Etiquette and Ideal American Girls

Whether rich or poor, the one whose sterling good sense is equal to her emergencies; the one who is self-reliant without being bold, firm without being overbearing, brainy without being masculine, strong of nerve—"but yet a woman." 

“We are proud of the ideal American girl. I mean the one who is essentially a lady, whether rich or poor, the one whose sterling good sense is equal to her emergencies; the one who is self-reliant without being bold, firm without being overbearing, brainy without being masculine, strong of nerve—"but yet a woman." 

Let her be equipped for the battle of life, which in our state of society so many girls are fighting single-handed. Instruct her in business principles; teach her to use the discretion needed to move safely along the crowded thoroughfare and to follow the routine of the office or the studio, trusting that with busy head and busy hands she may be safe wherever duty leads her tireless feet. 

But in her hours of social recreation, when she will meet and solve the vital problems of her own personal life, she needs a subtle something more; the mother's wisdom to supply the deficiencies of her inexperience, the mother's love to enfold her in unspoken sympathy, the mother's approbation to rest upon her dutiful conduct like a benediction.” – From Agnes H. Morton's, 1893 book “Etiquette” 

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

Friday, August 12, 2016

Etiquette and Refinement

Attentions should be warmly accepted, and the gratitude expressed should be of the sort which does not forget.

Seek the companionship of the refined and the gentle-mannered if you would be the same. Move in that society in whose ways you are versed and whose rules you practice, if you would be appreciated or met with like courtesy.

Never fail to say kind words to those in distress whom you meet. The kindness, however, must be genuine, and come from the heart, never in stereotyped and hollow phrases.

The courtesy which offers attentions should be met with graciousness in receiving them. Surprise is a sign that one rates one's self lower than did the person who showed the courtesy. Attentions should be warmly accepted, and the gratitude expressed should be of the sort which does not forget.

A woman, when in the presence of the men of the family, should expect that doors will be opened for her, that she will pass through them first, that packages will be carried, and errands run. She should not, however, let these little attentions be paid her by her father or an elderly relative.
Enter a room filled with people in a dignified manner and with a slight bow to the general company. "We all do stamp our value on ourselves" is true enough, and our private stamp is never more conspicuous than when we confront a roomful of people. If we show modesty but intense self-respect in our bearing, there is no one who will not raise his personal estimate of us no matter what it was.

The head should be well up, the body squarely erect, the chest out. Self-consciousness at such a time is a mistake, if natural, and shows the actual littleness which one is trying by an upright bearing to conceal. One should train one's self until the meeting of people, no matter who they may be, whether singly or in large numbers, is a matter of no particular concern as to deportment. Never enter a room noisily, nor fail to close a door after you, without slamming.

Never take another's seat unless you give it up upon his return. Dignified postures in sitting are marks of respect to yourself and the company you are with. A gentleman does not sit astride a chair, nor with legs spread out, nor a lady with her legs crossed. Never put out your foot, in the street car or elsewhere, or place it where it may trouble others in passing by.

When several people enter a room in a private house where you are sitting, always rise, especially if they are older than you. When an elderly person enters the room alone, it is always a graceful show of deference for all younger than he to rise and remain standing until he is seated.

The greetings of night and morning are due to all members of one's household, and should not be omitted. The one who enters a room where others are assembled gives the salutation first. "Good morning" is the appropriate greeting 'til noon. "Good afternoon" and "Good evening" are the greetings for the later hours of the day. "Good-by" is, however, the common and most acceptable form of farewell.
– Edith Ordway

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

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Etiquette and Dining vs Gobbling

There is a big difference between eating and dining. Eating ones food quickly, or gobbling ones food, causes much to be lost, not only in health, but in good manners and the companionship at the table. Dining is a way of leisurely savoring ones food, and enjoying ones company.

To eat fast is one of the bad habits of American people which we ought to avoid. If acquired in childhood, it will be hard to overcome, and will cause us much mortification when, later in life, we find ourselves with empty plates long before well-bred people in the company have finished theirs. 

Since we do not leave the table before others, there is nothing gained, even in time, while much is lost in health and in good manners. – From Edith E. Wiggin's 1884, “Lessons on Manners / For School and Home Use.”


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

Monday, August 8, 2016

1908 Olympic Etiquette Breaches

Regardless of the flag etiquette controversy at 1908 Olympic Games, and the scoring issues, all countries returned for the 2012 London Olympics... but in 1908, some of the Irish competitors, who had been told to parade under a British flag, refused to march. Furious the stars and stripes were not flying from the stadium flagpoles, the American team marched into the stadium, but refused to dip their flag to the King. The Finns, who'd been instructed to carry a Russian flag, marched with no flag at all.

Olympic Teams Disgusted
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Action of British Committee in Changing Rules Arouses Great Criticism

Events of the last three days in the London Stadium during the progress of the Olympic games to establish the world’s championships in athletics have proved one point which has been a matter of general belief for years. The British people are hard losers. They are unfair losers. They have sought by all the most contemptible and petty devices they could think of to so arrange matters that they shall have a distinct advantage over all other nations in the competitions for the world’s figures.

Bringing to their shores the teams of the other countries for a world-wide competition, the Englishmen have changed conditions, introduced several features distinctly forbidden by the rules, and have displayed a spirit of petty jealousy and desire to be uppermost at all hazard, that has cost them the respect of all athletic bodies the world over. It is inconceivable that a body of strong-muscled and clear-minded men should descend to such smallnesses as have been exhibited in the last week at the Olympic Games. 

First, the visiting nations, and especially the Swedish and American teams, were offended by the careless omission of their flags from the colors of the Stadium on the opening day. This was a breach of etiquette that was unpardonable except among the boorish and thoughtless Englishmen

Scoring Rules Changed

Then followed the controversy over ruling regarding the scoring of points, which, when the Americans began to show up strongly in the lead, was also changed as to take in all sports outside the Stadium, and therefore give the home teams a decided advantage, from the common scoring system of five points for first, three for second place, and one for third place, the scoring was altered by the assistance of the London sporting papers to count only the winning place, for which one point was allowed. This system gives England a big lead, whereas by the other and commonly used method, the American team had the honors. 

Throughout all events the British sportsmen have exhibited a spirit of jealousy of good performances of other athletes which has made them objects of scorn. There is no question that the American athletes, as well as those of other nations, are thoroughly disgusted with their reception at the hands of the Englishmen, and the games of this year are probably last that will ever go to the British Isles. 

One thing is assured, that there will be no teams entered from at least three nations, in the event of any of these championships ever being held again in British territory. — Sacramento Union, 1908

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

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Olympics Etiquette Breach

The 1932 Summer Olympics, (the Games of the X Olympiad) were held in Los Angeles. No other cities had made a bid to host. Many nations and athletes that would normally participate, were unable to pay for the trip, as they were held during a worldwide Great Depression. Those who did pay for the trip, felt personally snubbed by the President of the United States, due to his visible absence.

Did a U.S. President Medal in Rudeness?
The Los Angeles Illustrated Daily News quoted foreign athletes attending the Olympic games as saying that failure of President Hoover to open the games “seemed like a breach of international etiquette.” — Los Angeles, July 28, 1932
Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J Graber, is the Site Moderator and Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

Japan's Imperial Etiquette History

To the American Ex-Attaché, a "gruesome pantomime" was enacted at the time of the death in Formosa of the Japanese Prince  — Japanese Imperial Prince Kitashirakawa 
Ex-Attaché on Mourning Customs


Comparing Royal Court Mourning customs between the Orient and Occident, an ex foreign attaché reports on a "gruesome pantomime" that was enacted at the time of the death in Formosa of the Japanese Imperial Prince and Field Marshal Kitashirakawa, so well known in this country. 

"Japanese court etiquette requires that no official information of the death of a member of the reigning family shall be made until after the celebration of certain mortuary ceremonies in his or her own palace. The dead Prince was therefore brought all the way back from Formosa to Tokio as a live man. 

The general order announcing his departure to the troops bore what purported to be his signature. The man-of-war that conveyed his corpse to Japan flew no emblems of mourning as its masthead. Meals were served in the cabin where the dead Prince lay, and military and naval reports were made to his deaf ear every morning and evening just as if he were alive. 

On reaching port he was disembarked with naval and military honors and arrayed in a uniform of field marshal, was seated in a saloon carriage on the railroad, his staff taking their places around him. Arriving at Tokio he was conveyed not to a hearse, but to a state coach, seated in which, and surrounded by a cavalry escort, he was driven to his palace. Only on the following day did the government issue the public and official announcement of his death." — 1897


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

Etiquette and Kowtowing

The Guangxu Emperor, Zaitian (Manchu: Dzai-Tiyan), was the 11th Emperor of the Qing dynasty, and the 9th Qing Emperor to rule over China
Gong, the Emperor of China, has been struck by a change in court etiquette. He will henceforth receive foreign ministers once a year, and will excuse them from performing the kowtow, which consists in entering his presence on all-fours, like a dog, and bumping their heads, three times on the floor. — As reported in the Daily Alta News, 1891

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

Saturday, August 6, 2016

More Weird Royal Etiquette

"Why yes... I have heard of the queer customs in vogue at Sandringham!"

One of the queer customs in vogue at Sandringham, the favorite country house of King Edward and Queen Alexandra, has to do with Sunday church service. It is an understood thing that unlucky thirteen numbers the minutes of the reverend gentleman's discourse. No preacher is expected to preach longer than thirteen minutes. 

The habitues of the Sandringham pulpit understand and rarely pass the limit. The men who from time to time step fresh into the greatness of sermonizing to King Edward are always duly informed of the restriction and stop as near the thirteenth minute as they can.

Another point of etiquette in the King's home, church is that the clergyman always speaks in the direction of the lower left hand corner of the little building. The acoustic properties of the church are such, that owing to her deafness, the Queen can hear what is said only when the speaker looks neither to the right nor left; but into that particular corner. — San Francisco Call, 1903

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

Friday, August 5, 2016

Ball Etiquette and the Patroness

 A ball's patronesses should see, as far as possible, that the proper introductions are made, and that every one is enjoying the evening, their own pleasure coming last. 
The Duties of, and Details on, Patronesses at Balls

It is customary for the management of any institution giving a public ball to formally invite six, eight, or more married women to act as patronesses, and for their names to appear on the invitations. If badges are worn, each patroness is sent one or given one at the ball-room. The patronesses, after being welcomed at the ball by the management committees, take their places, ready to receive the guests. The Committee of Arrangements should look after the patronesses, introduce distinguished guests to them, escort them to supper and finally to their carriages.

Their duties are varied and responsible – among them, the subscription to the expenses of the entertainments. The patronesses should be divided into various committees to attend to special duties – as, music, caterers, supper arrangements, the ball-room, and all other details. While affairs of this kind could be left in the hands of those employed to carry out the details, it is better and safer for each committee to follow the various matters out to the smallest details.


Those devising new features and surprises for such an occasion will give the most successful ball. The one most active and having the best business ability should take the lead. Lists should be compared, in order to avoid duplicate invitations. The tickets should be divided among the patronesses, who, in turn, distribute them among their friends.

The patronesses should be at the ball-room in ample time before the arrival of the guests, to see that all is in readiness. They should stand together beside the entrance to welcome the guests. They should see, as far as possible, that the proper introductions are made, and that every one is enjoying the evening, their own pleasure coming last. 

If time permits, a hasty introduction to the patroness beside her may be made by a patroness, but it should not be done if there is the slightest possibility of blocking up the entrance. A nod of recognition here and there, or a shake of the hands with some particular friend, is all that is necessary. Prolonged conversation should be avoided.


A patroness should not worry over the affair, or leave anything to be done at the last minute. If she has to worry, she should not show it, lest she interfere with the pleasure of others. They should be the last to leave as well as the first to arrive, to see that the affair closes brilliantly. – From a variety of sources, including "The Book of Manners"

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

Thursday, August 4, 2016

19th C. Bicycling Fashion Etiquette

In taking up cycling attire for women we wish first of all to launch a protest against those abominable modern cycling garments, the bloomers. Don't wear them! Don't make them! Don't have anything to do with them! ~ Polite society has always dictated the etiquette expected for fashion, especially for the newest trends and styles in outdoor activities.

For Women Who Wheel 

New York Sartorial Art Journal contains the following interesting remarks anent bicycle costumes for women:

In taking up cycling attire for women we wish first of all to launch a protest against those abominable modern cycling garments, the bloomers. Don't wear them! Don't make them! Don't have anything to do with them! For of all the monstrosities of this day, a woman with a tightly laced waist und with limbs encased in baggy bloomers is the worst. Skirts are made nowadays of such design and length as not to hinder the free movements of the riders' limbs, so on that score there is no reason for complaint. It is much better from an artistic point of view, for a woman to wear knickerbockers than the hideous bulging bloomers, which no woman who has good taste will wear.

The short skirts of last season would blow up when the wearer pedaled fast or coasted down hill, even though knickerbockers and leggings were worn underneath, which exposed the rider to some mortification. This, however, is done away with by the increased length worn today. Regarding accessories to women's cycling attire, there is not much in the way of novelty to chronicle. The fourteen-button, tan kid boots remain very popular, with now and then a high lace and a high French kid boot in evidence. Some women wear knickerbockers and golf stockings underneath their skirts, and some, in hot weather, wear low Oxford shoes, the high lace button boot being rather warm. Shirt waists will of course, be in vogue as soon as the warm weather strikes us, and the high-banded turndown collar, worn with a cotten tie, will be popular.

A new thing for women's use in cycling furnishings will be the riding stock, which will be used either with shirt waist or jacket. It will fold twice around the neck, like a man's riding stock, though it will tie in the form of a bow instead of an Ascot. The tie proper in both the women's and men's articles will be of a material to match tho shirt or shirt waist. In mentioning women's cycling hats we can only say that there is such a variety of headgear for cycling that it would be an impossible task to enumerate and describe all of them. It is enough to say that the Tam-o-Shanter and the Tourist form of hats, neatly trimmed, and of a color to match the suits worn, and a black straw sailor, will be proper and most effective. Almost any kind of a stout glove goes well for cycling, although there are varlous special designs of cycling gloves on the market. — San Francisco Examiner, 1896



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