“Specific regulations were drawn up as to the height of the stove-pipe hats which men were to wear on state occasions.
The old Prince Albert coat, which European capitals have long discarded, was elevated to a place of distinction.”
The Prince Alberts in “Modern China” of 1915
PEKING, Nov. 28. —Chinese dressmakers, milliners and tailors are all in a flurry over the announcement that under the prospective Monarchy fashions will be quite unlike those of the Republic. So sure are the government officials of the result of the coming elections, that the Bureau of Rites has been instructed to prepare regulations for the etiquette of the Monarchy. Under the Republic the costumes and rules of conduct were wholly unlike those which prevailed in Imperial China.
Specific regulations were drawn up as to the height of the stove-pipe hats which men were to wear on state occasions.
The old Prince Albert coat, which European capitals have long discarded, was elevated to a place of distinction. In warm weather, distinguished gentlemen calling upon the President were permitted to wear a Prince Albert of unlined alpaca. Practically every detail of the costumes which members of Parliament must wear was fixed by mandate, and there was great confusion when the Chinese officials found it was necessary to shelve their native garb and imitate the dress of western nations. President Yuan Shi-kai has intimated that there will be no restoration of the gorgeous attire assumed under the Manchu regime, but it is generally believed that the new Monarchy will not adhere to the strictly severe toilet of the Republic.
At conferences held by the Bureau of Rites the following topics have already been considered: First – The etiquette to be adopted in foreign and diplomatic affairs, such as the form of correspondence, the ceremony of receiving guests, the ceremony for diplomatic funerals; Second — The etiquette in connection with domestic affairs, such as the ceremony to be performed when the “Heavenly Son” is ascending the throne; Third— The etiquette for the Imperial household, including funeral ceremonies, marriage rites and birthday celebrations.
In discussing the deliberations of the Bureau of Rites, the Peking Daily News, which is a staunch supporter of the Monarchial movement, says: “As the re-establishment of the Monarchy is a foregone conclusion, there is every likelihood that changes will be brought about in a very short time, and the etiquette promulgated by the Republic will no longer be applicable when the Monarchial form of government is restored. In view of these facts, conferences have been held by the Bureau of Rites for the various kinds of etiquette and rites to be adopted by the new government, so as to ‘get shelters ready before the rainfall comes in.’” – Associated Press Correspondence, 1915
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