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