COUGHING, SNEEZING, ETC.
Coughing, sneezing, clearing the throat, etc., if done at all, must be done as quickly as possible. Snuffing, hawking and expectorating must never be done in society. A sneeze can be checked by pressing the thumb or fingers firmly across the bridge of the nose. If not checked, the face should be buried in the handkerchief, during the act of sneezing, for obvious reasons.
ANECDOTES, PUNS AND REPARTEES.
Anecdotes should be seldom brought into a conversation. Puns are always regarded as vulgar. Repartee should be indulged in with moderation, and never kept up, as it degenerates into the vulgarity of an altercation.
A SWEET AND PURE BREATH.
The breath should be kept sweet and pure. Onions are the forbidden fruit, because of their offensiveness to the breath. No gentleman should go into the presence of ladies smelling of tobacco.
It is neither respectful nor polite to smoke in the presence of ladies, even though they have given permission, nor should a gentleman smoke in a room which ladies are in the habit of frequenting. In those homes when the husband is permitted to smoke in any room of the house, the sons will follow the father’s example, and the air of the rooms becomes like that of a public house.
SUPPRESSION OF EMOTION.
Suppression of undue emotion, whether of laughter, of anger, or of mortification, of disappointment, or of selfishness in any form, is a mark of good breeding.
A GOOD LISTENER.
To be a good listener is almost as great an art as to be a good talker; but it is not enough only to listen, you must endeavor to seem interested in the conversation of those who are talking. Only the low-bred allow their impatience to be manifest.
GIVE PRECEDENCE TO OTHERS.
Give precedence to those older or of higher social position than yourself, unless they required you to take the precedence, when it is better to obey than to refuse. Be more careful to give others their rank of precedence than to take your own.
Always express your own opinions with modesty, and, if called upon, defend them, but without that warmth which may lead to hard feelings. Do not enter into argument. Having spoken your mind, and thus shown you are not cowardly in your beliefs and opinions, drop the subject and lead to some other topic. There is seldom any profit in idle discussion.