Our Deportment eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 348 pages of information about Our Deportment.

When balls are given, if the weather is bad, an awning should be provided for the protection of those passing from their carriages to the house.  In all cases, a broad piece of carpet should be spread from the door to the carriage steps.

Gentlemen should engage their partners for the approaching dance, before the music strikes up.

In a private dance, a lady cannot well refuse to dance with any gentleman who invites her, unless she has a previous engagement.  If she declines from weariness, the gentleman will show her a compliment by abstaining from dancing himself, and remaining with her while the dance progresses.



Etiquette of the Street.

The manners of a person are clearly shown by his treatment of the people he meets in the public streets of a city or village, in public conveyances and in traveling generally.  The true gentleman, at all times, in all places, and under all circumstances, is kind and courteous to all he meets, regards not only the rights, but the wishes and feelings of others, is deferential to women and to elderly men, and is ever ready to extend his aid to those who need it.


The true lady walks the street, wrapped in a mantle of proper reserve, so impenetrable that insult and coarse familiarity shrink from her, while she, at the same time, carries with her a congenial atmosphere which attracts all, and puts all at their ease.

A lady walks quietly through the streets, seeing and hearing nothing that she ought not to see and hear, recognizing acquaintances with a courteous bow, and friends with words of greeting.  She is always unobtrusive, never talks loudly, or laughs boisterously, or does anything to attract the attention of the passers-by.  She walks along in her own quiet, lady-like way, and by her pre-occupation is secure from any annoyance to which a person of less perfect breeding might be subjected.

A lady never demands attention and favors from a gentleman, but, when voluntarily offered, accepts them gratefully, graciously, and with an expression of hearty thanks.


A lady never forms an acquaintance upon the street, or seeks to attract the attention or admiration of persons of the other sex.  To do so would render false her claims to ladyhood, if it did not make her liable to far graver charges.


No one, while walking the streets, should fail, through pre-occupation, or absent-mindedness, to recognize friends or acquaintances, either by a bow or some form of salutation.  If two gentlemen stop to talk, they should retire to one side of the walk.  If a stranger should be in company with one of the gentlemen, an introduction is not necessary.  If a gentleman meets another gentleman in company with a lady whom he does not know, he lifts his hat to salute them both.  If he knows the lady, he should salute her first.  The gentleman who accompanies a lady, always returns a salutation made to her.

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Our Deportment from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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