I have several excerpts about ball etiquette on this blog. But given how many balls I must attend during my hectic social season, I like to keep brushed up on proper deportment. (Full disclosure, I’ve attended zero balls, and I don’t have a hectic social season … or any social season for that matter) Therefore, I’m piqued by Etiquette for Ladies: With Hints on the Preservation, Improvement, and Display of Female Beauty because it was published in 1838 in Philadelphia, which makes it a relatively early “how-to” etiquette book. If you enjoy historical romances, you probably won’t find any new information here. However, it’s still an amusing, brief read.
Please note, in the past, I’ve tried to post images that reflect the timeframe and location of what I’m excerpting. I’m no longer going to do that because, simply, it’s not fun for me. This is my Floating World, which is about pleasure, imagination, and entertainment, and there are so many wonderful images that I want to share. So going forward, I’m posting images that reflect the spirit of the text.
alls, Concerts, and Evening Parties
These amusements presuppose a fortune and good ton; the practice of society, therefore, and consequently a forgetfulness of the precepts of politeness in respect to them, would be truly preposterous.
When you wish to give a dance, you send out invitations a week beforehand, that the ladies may have time to prepare articles for their toilet.
If it is to be a simple evening party, in which we may wear a summer walking-dress, the mistress of the house gives verbal invitations, and does not omit to apprise her friends of this circumstance, or they might appear in unsuitable dresses. If, on the contrary, the soirée is to be in reality a ball, the invitations are written, or what is better, printed, and expressed in the third person.
A room appropriated for the purpose, and furnished with cloak-pins to hang up the shawls and other dresses of the ladies, is almost indispensable. Domestics should be there also, to aid them in taking off and putting on their outside garments.
We are not obliged to go exactly at the appointed hour; it is even fashionable to go an hour later. Married ladies are accompanied by their husbands; unmarried ones, by their mother, or by a chaperon. These last ladies place themselves behind the dancers; the master of the house then goes before one and another, procures seats for them, and mingles again among the gentlemen who are standing, and who form groups or walk about the room.
A lady cannot refuse the invitation of a gentleman to dance, unless she has already accepted that of another, for she would be guilty of an in civility which might occasion trouble; she would, moreover, seem to show contempt for him whom she refused, and would expose herself to receive in secret an ill compliment from the mistress of the house.
Married or young ladies, cannot leave a ballroom, or any other party, alone. The former should be accompanied by one or two other married ladies, and the latter by their mother, or by a lady to represent her.
Ladies should avoid talking too much; it will occasion remarks. It has also a bad appearance to whisper continually in the ear of your partner.
The master of the house should see that all the ladies dance; he should take notice particularly of those who seem to serve as drapery to the walls of the ball-room, (or wall-flowers, as the familiar expression is,) and should see that they are invited to dance. But he must do this wholly unperceived, in order not to wound the self-esteem of the unfortunate ladies.
Gentlemen whom the master of the house requests to dance with these ladies, should be ready to accede to his wish, and even appear pleased at dancing with a person thus recommended to their notice.
Ladies who dance much, should be very careful not to boast before those who dance but little or not at all, of the great number of dances for which they are engaged in advance. They should also, without being perceived, recommend to these less fortunate ladies, gentlemen of their acquaintance.
In giving the hand for ladies’ chain or any other figures, those dancing should wear a smile, and accompany it with a polite inclination of the head, in the manner of a salutation. At the end of the dance, the gentleman reconducts the lady to her place, bows and thanks her for the honour which she has conferred. She also bows in silence, smiling with a gracious air.
In these assemblies, we should conduct ourselves with reserve and politeness towards all present, although they may be unknown to us.
Persons who have no ear for music, that is to say, a false one, ought to refrain from dancing. Never hazard taking part in a quadrille, unless you know how to dance tolerably; for if you are a novice, or but little skilled, you would bring disorder into the midst of pleasure. Being once engaged to take part in a dance, if the figures are not familiar, be careful not to advance first. You can in this way govern your steps by those who go before you. Beware, also, of taking your place in a set of dancers more skillful than yourself. When an unpractised dancer makes a mistake, we may apprize him of his error; but it would be very impolite to have the air of giving him a lesson.
Dance with grace and modesty, neither affect to make a parade of your knowledge; refrain from great leaps and ridiculous jumps, which would attract the attention of all towards you.
In a private ball or party, it is proper to show still more reserve, and not manifest more preference for one gentleman than another; you should dance with all who ask properly.
In public balls, a gentleman offers his partner refreshments, but which she very seldom accepts, unless she is well acquainted with him. But in private parties, the persons who receive the company, send round cake and other refreshments, of which every one helps themselves. Near the end of the evening, in a well regulated ball, it is customary to have a supper; but in a soirée, without great preparation, we may dispense with a supper; refreshments are, however, necessary; and not to have them would be the greatest impoliteness.
We should retire incognito, in order not to disturb the master and mistress of the house; and we should make them, during the week, a visit of thanks, at which we may converse of the pleasure of the ball, and the good selection of the company.
The proprieties in deportment, which concerts require, are little different from those which are recognised in every other assembly, or in public exhibitions, for concerts partake of the one and the other, according as they are public or private. In private concerts, the ladies occupy the front seats, and the gentlemen are generally in groups behind, or at the side of them. We should observe the most profound silence, and refrain from beating time, humming the airs, applauding, or making ridiculous gestures of admiration. It often happens that a dancing soirée succeeds a concert, and billets of invitation, distributed two or three days beforehand, should give notice of it to the persons invited.
Maybe you were slighted at a ball? Or perhaps the person you love is so far above you in station that no union is possible? Don’t fret, my dears, the self-help classic Anatomy of Melancholy is here to lift your depressed spirits.
Please note, if you want to earnestly study the history of mental health, I recommend the Anatomy of Melancholy as it was published in 1683, or the faithful editions thereafter. Those volumes include diagnosis, herbal remedies, as well as old-fashioned purging and bloodletting. However, I have not excerpted from the original tome but from a rather crazy, abridged 1824 version. The editor describes his volume as a smaller boat built from the wood of the original. He writes, “so trimmed, it is hoped, as to be capable of shewing to its passengers, the superior pleasures that are to be experienced on the calm and unruffled surface of a virtuous life; while it exhibits to their view, the terrifying dangers of that turbulent ocean, which, agitated by the storms of Passion and the winds of Vice, dashes with rude and raging violence along its surrounding shores.
Bread made of good wheaten flour, pure, well purged from the bran, and kneaded with rain-water, is of itself “the staff of life.” The thinnest beer, and lightest wines, are, of all liquors, the best, except fine pure water, sweet to the smell, and like air to the sight, such as is soon hot, and soon cold. … Of fruits, the sweetest are the best, particularly the juice of the pomegranate; and of herbs, borage, bugles, endive, fennel, anniseed, and balm, are to be preferred. The use of rose-water, if it be sweet, and well distilled, is particularly serviceable in the cure of this disease.
Melancholy men have, in general, good appetites and bad digestions; and nothing sooner poisons both the body and mind, than to eat and ingurgitate beyond all measure, as many of them do.
Fasting and feasting in extremes are equally pernicious, and best restrained by tasting only of one dish of plain food, and never eating until hunger requires to be satisfied.
njoy Fresh Air and Cleanliness
A clear air cheers up the spirits, and exhilarates the mind; but a thick, black, misty, and tempestuous atmosphere, contracts the powers both of body and of mind, and overthrows, in time, the strongest health. A good prospect alone will relieve melancholy.
He, therefore, who wishes either to recover or enjoy the invaluable blessings of health, and particularly he who is disposed to be melancholy, should frequently wash his hands and face, shift his clothing, have clean linen, and be comfortably attired; for, sordes vitiant, nastiness defiles a man, and dejects his spirits; but above all, he should shift his place of residence, and always choose, at each remove, a dry and airy eminence.
ake a Bath
Bathing, either in natural or artificial baths, is of great use in this malady, and yields, as many physicians, particularly Ætius, Galen, Rhasis, and Montonus, contend, as speedy a remedy as any other physic whatsoever. Crato and Fuschius recommend baths medicated with camomile, violets, and borage. Laurentius, and others, speak of milk baths, the body afterwards to be anointed with oil of bitter almonds; and some prescribe a bath in which ram’s heads, and other ingredients of the like kind, have been previously boiled.
Exercise, both mental and corporeal, when duly regulated, and discreetly taken, highly contributes not only to the restoration and establishment of general health, but to the prevention and expulsion of this particular disease. The heavens themselves are in constant motion; the sun rises and sets, the moon increases and decreases, the stars and planets have their regular revolutions, the air is agitated with winds, the waters ebb and flow, and man also should ever be in action. Employment, which Galen calls “Nature’s physician,” is indeed so essential to human happiness, that indolence is justly considered as the mother of misery.
Let the world, I say, have their may-games, wakes, whitsunales; their dancings and concerts; their puppet-shews, hobby-horses, tabors, bagpipes, balls, barley-breaks, and whatever sports and recreations please them best, provided they be followed with discretion.
ead a good book
No person can be so wholly overcome with idleness or involved in the labyrinth of worldly cares, troubles, and discontents, who will not find his mind, if he has any, much enlightened by reading.
et Some Sleep
Sleep, by expelling cares, and pacifying the mind, is particularly serviceable in the cure of melancholy; and must not only be procured at proper intervals, but protracted, if possible, beyond its ordinary duration. Crato is of opinion that seven or eight hours is a competent time for a melancholy man to rest. He who wishes to taste the sweets of sleep, must go to bed, animo securo, quieto, et libero, with a secure and composed mind, in a quiet place; for to lie in bed, as some do, and not sleep night after night, giving assent to pleasing conceits and vain imaginations, is extremely pernicious. All violent perturbations of the mind must, in some sort, be qualified before we can look for soft repose. The quietude and security of rural retirement greatly encourage this composure of the mind. Ficinus recommends the concord of sweet sounds to the ear of a patient, previous to the usual hours of rest, as a certain means of procuring undisturbed and pleasing repose; others the reading of some amusing tale; and others, to have a basin of water gently dropping its contents near the bedside. But perhaps a good draught of muscadine, with a toast and nutmeg, may prove as efficacious a remedy against that disinclination to sleep, and those fearful and troublesome dreams with which melancholy are molested, as any that can be prescribed; always including, however, the two indispensable requisites for this purpose, a clear conscience, and a light supper.
isten to Music
Music, divine music, besides the excellent powers it possesses of expelling many other diseases, is a sovereign remedy against despair and melancholy, and will drive even the Devil himself away.
elax in the Company of Friends
False friendship, like the ivy, decays and ruins the walls it embraces; but true friendship gives new life and animation to the object it supports; forming the most pleasing remedy against, not only melancholy, but every grievance and discontent: for Discontents and Grievances are the lot of man: our whole life, as Apuleius well observes, is a glucupicron, a bitter-sweet passion, a mixture of pleasure and of pain, from which no man can hope to go free: but as this condition is common to all, no one man should be more disquieted than another.
He who desires but neighbours’ fare,
Will for no storm or tempest care.
Mirth and Merry Company are the companions of music in the cure of melancholy. The merrier the heart the longer the life.
Every good physician rings this remedy in his patient’s ears; and Marsilius Ficinus thus concludes an epistle to Bernard Canisianus, and other friends: “Live merrily, O my friends! free from cares and grief: again and again, I exhort you to be merry; and if any thing trouble your hearts, or vex your souls, cast it off with contempt. This I enjoin you not only as a divine, but as a physician; for without mirth, physic is of no force.”
I can’t recall why I was skimming through The Picture of London for 1804. As with most of my random, chaotic research, I didn’t find what I was seeking but instead stumbled upon something else: a listing of London tea gardens. Tea gardens! What a wondrous thing! My curiosity was piqued.
Despite writing historicals, I could never imagine myself in Regency or Victorian England. I have too much of a fondness for soft knit clothes, slang talk, and lounging about. However, I can envision myself in a tea garden, casually strolling about the flowers while chatting with friends.
Tea gardens, frequented by the middle classes, were humbler versions of pleasure gardens. They were known for tea, of course, as well as food and for providing venues for sports and concerts. Most were located in the green spaces outside London, which in those days wasn’t very far away. In The Amusements Of Old London William Biggs Boulton writes, “When George the Third came to the throne, London, including Westminster, was bounded by Oxford Street and Holborn on the north, by the river on the south, by the outer boundary of the city on the east, and by Hyde Park, Arlington Street, and St. James’ Street on the west. All the rest of modern London was suburban merely, or open and pleasant country interspersed with wild heaths, and dotted with ancient villages.”
Below I’ve excerpted some of the recommended tea gardens found in The Picture of London for 1804 and some tidbits from other books. I added some illustrations from those sources, but I struggled to find paintings of tea gardens, so I inserted images of Georgian-era people in outdoor settings.
Bagnigge Wells Tea Gardens, near Cold-bath-fields. An elegantly finished place. In one of the rooms there is a good organ, regularly played every afternoon, Sundays excepted.
The gardens at that time were extensive, and laid out in the old-fashioned manner, clipped trees, walks in formal lines, and a profusion of leadened statues. A fountain was placed centre, as shown in our cut. A Dutch Cupid half-choking a swan was the brilliant idea it shadowed forth. The roof of the temple is seen above trees to the left; it was a circular domed colonnade formed by a double row of pillars and pilasters; in its centre was a double pump one piston supconcert plying the chalybeate the other the cathartic water; it was encircled by a low balustrade. A grotto was the other great feature of the garden; it was a little castellated building of irregular hexagonal form, covered with shells, stones, glass, & c forming two apartments open to the gardens. They were drunk for the charge of threepence person or delivered from the pump-room at pence per gallon. As a noted place for tea drinking it is frequently alluded to by authors of the century. In the prologue to Colman’s comedy Bon Ton 1776 a vulgar city-madam from Spitalfields thus defines that phrase:
Bone Tone’s the space twix’t Saturday and Monday, And riding in a one-horse chair on Sunday, ‘Tis drinking tea on summer afternoons At Bagnigge Wells with china and gilt spoons
White Conduit-house Tea Gardens Many years famous for the hot rolls peculiar to it. A delightful situation in summer, and has to boast of the finest toned organ in England for the size. Good wines, &c.
“A description the place [White Conduit House] in 1774 presents a general picture of the Tea Garden of that period : “The garden is formed into walks, prettily disposed. At the end of the principal one is a painting, which seems to render it (the walk) longer in appearance than it really is. In the centre of the garden is a fish pond. There are boxes for company, curiously cut into hedges, adorned with Flemish and other paintings. There are two handsome tea-rooms, one over the other, and several inferior ones in the house.” The fish-pond was soon after filled up, and its site planted, the paintings removed, and a new dancing and tea tea saloon, called the Apollo-room, built. In 1826, the gardens were opened as a “ Minor Vanxhall;” and here Mrs. Bland, the charming vocalist, last sang in public. In 1829, the small house, the original tavern, was taken down, and rebuilt upon a more extensive plan, so as to dine upwards of 2000 persons in its largest room. But in 1849 these premises wore also taken down ; the tavern was re-erected on a smaller scale, and the garden-ground let on building leases for White Conduit-street, &c.
[The] cut represents the aspect of both buildings, as they stood in 1827. The conduit was then in a pitiable state of neglect — denuded of the outer case of stone, a mere core of rubble the house was a low roofed building, with a row of clipped trees in front, and a large garden in the rear, well supplied with arbours all round for tea drinking; and such was its popularity at the commencement of this century that fifty pounds was often taken on a Sunday afternoon for sixpenny tea-tickets. Its bread was as popular as the buns of Chelsea and White Conduit loaves was a London cry, listened for by such old ladies as wished to furnish a tea-table luxury to their friends. On week-days, it was a kind of minor Vauxhall, with singing and fire-works on great occasions; the ascent of a balloon crowded the gardens, and collected thousands of persons in the fields around. It was usual for London ‘roughs’ to assemble in large numbers in these fields for foot ball play on Easter Monday; occasionally the fun was diversified by Irish faction fights.”
Hornsey-wood-house for Tea Gardens. A most interesting place, celebrated for the peculiar beauty of the wood adjoining. As no expense has been spared to render this an elegant house of accommodation, it stands first on the list of places of this description. Dinners provided for large parties.
Willoughby’s Tea Gardens, &c. usually known by the name of Highbury Barn. A very pleasant place in summer, where parties are accommodated with dinners or tea, hot rolls, liquors, &c. on reasonable terins.
Chalk Farm, near Hampstead. A house of the above description, where parties meet also for convivial entertainment every afternoon in the summer season.
Chalk Farm, corrupted from the old village of Chalcot, shown in Camden’s map, was another noted tea-garden. This was *the White House,’’ to which, in 1678, body of Sir Edmund Herry Godfrey was carried, after it had been found, about two fields distant, upon the south side of Primrose Hill. Several duels have been fought here: here John Scott (of the London Magazine) was shot by Mr. Christie, Feb. 16, 1821; and the poet Moore, and Jeffrey, of the Edinburgh Review, met in 1806. Chalk Farm now gives name to the railway station here.
Canonbury-louse, near Islington. Frequented in the summer-time by tea-drinking parties, who are comfortably accommodated, on reasonable terms. Large dinner parties provided for.
Hoxton Tea Gardens, Hoxton-square. Upon the same plan, has a good room, with a neat orchestra, and a small organ, Tea, wines, &c.
Yorkshire Stingo Tea Garden, Lisson-green, New-road, Paddington. A house many years celebrated for rustic sports on May-day. Wines, Ales &c.
Pursuing the road toward Paddington ‘The Yorkshire Stingo’ opposite Lisson Grove, invited wayfarer to its tea garden and bowling green; it was much crowded on Sundays when an admission fee of sixpence was demanded at the doors. For that a ticket was given, to be exchanged with the waiters for its value in refreshments; a plan very adopted in these gardens to prevent the intrusion of the lowest classes, or of such as might only stroll about them without spending anything. The Edgeware Road would point the way to Kilburn Wells, which an advertisement of 1773 assures us were then ‘in the utmost perfection the gardens enlarged and greatly improved the great room being particularly adapted to the use and amusement of the politest companies, fit for either music dancing or entertainment.”
‘The Monster’ and ‘Jenny’s Whim’ in the fields near Chelsea. Walpole, in one of his letters, says that at Vauxhall he ‘picked up Lord Granby, arrived very drunk from Jenny’s Whim.’ Angelo, in his Pic-nic or Table talk describes it as a tea garden situated after passing a wooden bridge on the left previous to entering the long avenue, the coach way to where Ranelagh once stood. This place was much frequented from its novelty, being an inducement to allure the curious by its amusing deceptions particularly on their first appearance there. Here was a large garden, in different parts of which were recesses; and treading on a spring, taking you by surprise, up started different figures, some ugly enough to frighten you; like a Harlequin, Mother Shipton, or some terrific animal. In a large piece of water, facing the tea alcoves, large fish or mermaids were shewing themselves above the surface. This queer spectacle was kept by a famous mechanist, who had been employed at one of the winter theatres. The water served less reputable purposes in 1755 when according to a notice in The Connoisseur it was devoted to ‘the royal diversion of duckhunting.’
Adam and Eve Tea Garden, Sc. Tottenham-court-road. Similar to the above. A small organ in the room upstairs, where tea, wine, and punch are regularly served.
Toten Hall, at the north west extremity of Tottenham-court-road, was the ancient court house of that manor, and subsequently a place of public entertainment. In the parish books of St Giles’s in the Fields year 1645 is an entry of Mrs Stacye’s maid and others being fined for drinking at Tottenhall Court on the Sabbath daie, xijd a piece.” The premises next became the Adam and Eve Tea Gardens before the house is laid the scene of Hogarth’s March to Finchley; and in the grounds May 16 1785, Lunardi fell with his burst balloon, and was but slightly injured. The Gardens were much frequented but the place falling into disrepute, the music house was taken down, and upon the site of the Skittle-grounds and Gardens was built Eden street, Hampstead road, the public house being rebuilt.
Adam and Eve Tea Garden, &c. St. Pancras. A pleasant distance from town, where is an excellent bowling green, and a regular company meet in summer, in the afternoon, to play at bowls and trap-ball. A very good room for parties to dine, drink tea, &c.
Camberwell-grove House and Tea Garden. A very comfortable place, where there is a good bowling green, and such excellent accommodation as is usual to places of this description.
The Montpellier Tea Garden, Walworth, near Camberwell. A compact place, something similar to the above, and noted for a small maze at the bottom of the garden. Tea, hot rolls, good wines, spirituous liquors, &c. Large parties provided for.
Bermondsey Spa, Southwark. Conducted upon a pian something similar to Vauxhall. By paying one shilling the visitor is entitled to the amusement of the evening, which consists of a concert of vocal and instrumental music, and frequently of fireworks. There are some very decent paintings; and among them an excellent butcher’s shop, by the late Mr. Keys, who was unrivalled in this species of painting. Parties are accommodated with tea, wines, and good suppers.
Mermaid Tea Gardens, Hackney. An ordinary on Sundays; a good larder, wines, &c. with an assembly room.
Cumberland Tea Gardens, Vauxhall. In addition to the garden, this place has to boast of one of the pleasantest rooms near the metropolis. It is situated on the banks of the Thames, and commands a delightful view of that beautiful river, and of the places adjacent.
The Sluice House, near Hornsey. Celebrated for eel pies, excellent tea, and hot rolls.
Marlborough Tea Gardens, near Sloane-square, Chelsea. Diners, tea, &c. An excellent cricket ground.
When I go for a walk, I typically wear workout clothes, which only match if I’ve done the laundry recently. I’m by myself, listening to music on my earbuds, and waving at passing dogs (and, sometimes, people.) It’s a good thing that I don’t live in Victorian England, because according to Lady Constance Howard in her 1885 volume Etiquette: What To Do, and How To Do It, I would scandalize polite society with my blatantly offensive behavior. Let’s have Lady Constance Howard explain the egregious err of my modern ways.
With regard to walking in London, a young lady would not walk out by herself ; she would be accompanied by her maid ; until she was old enough to be presented, by her governess, after she was presented, by her mother, father, brother, or some relation.
This rule should always be enforced, but now-a-days young ladies are often seen walking by themselves, but it does not look well ; it makes them liable to accusations of fastness, and etiquette requires that they should not be permitted so to break its established laws. In the country it is a different thing. In a park, village, town, suburban district, and seaside resort, a young girl would, with perfect propriety, and without any breach of etiquette, walk about alone, unattended and unaccompanied, and so go from one house to another of the friends and relations who might chance to reside in close proximity to their houses.
The rules before mentioned only apply to walking in London and in places of general assembly, public streets, and promenades at fashionable watering-places like Folkestone and Brighton, and at continental seaside towns.
Married ladies, when they are young and good looking, very often secure the companionship of a younger sister, or some lady who is a relation or friend, to walk with them, not from a sense of its being necessary that they should have someone with them, or from a feeling of propriety, but because to walk in London or a town alone is always a shy thing to do. Any lady doing so is more or less conspicuous; she is more or less noticed, and when she is well dressed and decidedly handsome and attractive in appearance, it would not always be an agreeable thing to do, whereas two ladies walking together would experience less shyness and attract less attention from those who see them.
Still, young married ladies often walk long distances alone, and if they are not shy and do not mind being stared at (those who do are, alas ! the exception), there is no reason why they should not walk alone, if it pleases them: it is quite correct etiquette that they should do so.
Married ladies, whether young or middle-aged, can at all times walk out alone and unattended; but when going to the Park or a public promenade at a fashionable seaside resort, they would nearly always ask another lady to walk with them. It does not look well to see a lady walk down Rotten Row in the height of the London season, whether in the morning or afternoon, alone.
Generally, during the season, ladies prefer the Park to the more crowded thoroughfares, such as Bond Street, Piccadilly, St James’ Street, etc. They would avoid them as much as they could, and if obliged to walk down them, would always do so accompanied by someone, either lady or gentleman.
Twelve to two o’clock are the usual hours for walking in London, especially in the summer. In the winter two-thirty to four-thirty-three to six in the summer. Both in summer and winter those who possess carriages generally drive in the afternoon, and devote the morning to walking.
The hours named are the fashionable and usual hours for walking at seaside towns and English watering-places.
If two ladies of different rank and but slightly acquainted were to meet in the Park or street, the lady of highest rank would, of course, bow first. If their rank were equal, it would not matter in the least which bowed first, so long as they acknowledged each other’s presence by this small act of courtesy.
To omit to bow would be a sign of ill-breeding, and a want of the knowledge of what is required by the laws of etiquette, that would reflect very much upon the lady neglecting this social duty.
Ladies should be careful to bow graciously. A little curt nod, a jerk of the head, a quick movement of the head, or the “inane smile’ which is all many people now vouchsafe to their acquaintances and friends by way of recognition when they meet them walking, driving, or riding, are all in the worst of possible taste.
Many ladies give an imperceptible nod to the gentlemen of their acquaintance, a decided proof of bad manners.
A bow should be a decided and graceful bend of the neck and head, indicating that it is a pleasure to the person making the bow to acknowledge her friends by so doing.
If I may be humbly permitted to say so, let people watch Her Majesty when she acknowledges the loyal salutations of her people, and see what a bow should be. It is at once dignified and most gracious, and those on whom it is bestowed feel both pleasure and a keen sense of the honour that has been accorded to them.
It is the same with all our Royal Family, and people in general would do well to profit by the example set to them.
The degree of empressement exhibited by a gentleman when he meets a lady whom he knows, would be entirely regulated by the fact of their acquaintance being a slight one or their being very old friends. In the latter case, he would take his hat quite off; in the former, he would only slightly raise it off his head, and his bow should be of the most ceremonious and respectful description, their acquaintanceship not warranting more cordiality on the part of the gentleman.
If he bowed in any other way than these two, he would either seem to be too familiar, or to look as if he wished to avoid the lady altogether, only rendering her the least courtesy possible under the circumstances.
It is a mistake to be too gushing and empressé in manner; it is equally a mistake to snub people unmercifully: no gentleman or lady would ever be guilty of either.
A gentleman cannot, of course, bow to a lady with whom he is unacquainted, nor do gentlemen raise their hats to each other when they meet in the Park or street; they would say, ‘How are you, B.?’ or nod, or say ‘Glad to see you, Charley,’ and would then pass on.
The only occasion on which a gentleman would raise his hat to another gentleman would be, if two gentlemen met in the Park or street who knew each other, and one was walking with ladies or a lady with whom the other gentleman was unacquainted; he would raise his hat to his friend, instead of speaking to him or nodding.
This would be simply done as a mark of civility and respect to the ladies or lady with whom his friend was walking ; it would not be looked upon as a bow to the ladies or lady, as the gentleman had not been introduced to them; nor would it constitute an acquaintanceship between them ; nor could the gentleman meeting the same ladies or lady in future bow to them, or show that he had seen them before, unless he was first of all introduced to them by some mutual friend, or by the friend with whom he had seen them walking.
In the same way, no lady could, under any circumstances, bow to a lady or gentleman, without a previous introduction to them, even if she had known them by sight for years,-knew their names and all about them, from constantly seeing them with friends of her own, and meeting them at different balls and réunions in society.
Etiquette permits no bows to be exchanged, except between those who have already been presented to each other.
On the Continent, the rule of bowing is the exact contrary to that which is observed in England,—that is to say, the gentleman bows first instead of the lady.
In England, when bowing to friends or acquaintances, it is a lady’s privilege to bow first.
The gentleman would then take off his hat to the lady who had given him this sign of recognition; he would, as a general rule, not bow until the lady had bowed to him ; on most occasions both would bow at the same moment, as the lady would be sure beforehand that the gentleman would return her courteous bow, or she would not take the initiative and bow to him.
In the case of a lady meeting a gentleman with whom she is acquainted, walking with a gentleman who was a stranger to her, she would at once bow to the gentleman who had been introduced to her ; she would do the same (except under particular circumstances) were he walking with a lady whose acquaintance she had not made.
Many husbands and wives, when taking a ramble together, walk arm-in-arm. It is a good old fashion, and should always be observed.
The same applies in the case of a mother and son, father and daughter, daughter or son-in-law with their mother or father-in-law, and in all cases where the lady is lame, or not very young, it is a proof of civility that every lady has a right to expect from the gentleman walking with her, more especially at dangerous crossings in London, which are a source of unfeigned terror to most ladies.
It is not necessary for a lady when walking with a gentleman to introduce any other gentleman she may meet, to him, unless she has a special reason for doing so, or thinks they both wish for the introduction.
If she were walking with her husband or father, she would of course do so, but in the case of her brother, nephew, cousin, or the husband of any lady in whose house she was staying, it would be unnecessary and not expected, except under the circumstances before mentioned.
The rule with regard to introductions between a guest and her hostess, with regard to the ladies they meet when out walking, would be that the guest would present the friends or relations she met during the walk to her hostess, which civility the hostess would also show her, if they stopped and had a conversation sufficiently prolonged to admit of such an introduction being effected.
If the friend of either lady was antagonistic to the other, no introductions would be made, and after the hostess and her guest had continued their walk, matters would be duly explained and discussed, and the true reasons given for the course pursued.
Ladies would not exclude any ladies from the conversation; it would be very rude to do so, and would make the lady so treated very uncomfortable she would feel snubbed and ignored.
If two ladies meet out walking, and take a walk together, and other ladies join them in the course of their walk, no introductions, except with special reasons, or expressed wishes that such should be the case, would be made by any of them to any of the others.
At fashionable watering-places, sea-side resorts, on the Continent, etc., gentlemen meeting ladies with whom they are acquainted, walk about with them for some time, get them a chair if there happens to be a band playing, and show them any courtesy in their power, while the ladies, on their part, introduce the gentlemen to those ladies or gentlemen belonging to their party, whose acquaintance they have reason to believe will be pleasant and acceptable to them.
Two ladies walking together would not walk arm-in-arm-it would be very vulgar to do so; also, no lady should put on her gloves while walking in the street, she should put them on before she leaves the house.
Ladies cannot be too particular when out walking; an exaggerated style of dress, gaudy colours, much jewellery, painted faces, a walk that makes people turn round and stare, in a word, anything that attracts attention in the public streets, more especially from gentlemen, is in the worst possible taste; no real lady would ever commit such a breach of recognised etiquette and the fitness of things; no true lady would court the stares and exclamations her appearance so dressed would attract; to be the object of such so-called admiration, would be a direct insult to the title of honour she ought to hold,—that of being ‘a lady !’
Black dresses, quietly made, and simply trimmed ‘gown’ become a lady when out walking, in a way befitting her claim to the name.
Let her dress herself with any other view except that of receiving respect from all passers-by, and she is no longer what she wishes the world to believe her to be-a true lady.
Gentlemen when out walking together generally walk ‘bras dessus-bras dessous. It is more sociable altogether to do so.
No gentleman swings his stick or umbrella about when walking, as he would be in danger of bestowing a gratuitous and unexpected blow on a passer-by, who might make him rue his carelessness and rudeness.
If a gentleman passes a lady when he is walking, and the pavement is crowded, so that one or other of them must step into the road to make room for the other to pass, the gentleman would not permit the lady to be the one to do this; he should walk along the road until the crowd lessened.
He would pursue this course whether he were acquainted with the lady or not; to do otherwise would exhibit a great want of good manners, a total absence of knowledge as to what is due to a lady. When a lady and gentleman are walking together, the lady would take the gentleman’s left arm, otherwise, if he met any lady of his acquaintance, he would not be able to take off his hat to her.
If a gentleman is escorting his two sisters out walking, they would walk on either side of him. Neither of them (unless one was not strong) would take his arm; and on no account would they each take an arm, and so walk in the Park or street.
A lady walking with a gentleman, whether taking his arm or not, would usually walk on his left hand.
A muff and umbrella in winter, and a parasol in summer, are the only articles usually carried by ladies when out walking ; but let me assure them that there will be no loss of dignity on their part, should it fall to their lot to carry a brown paper parcel through the streets of London.
People whose opinion is worth having will admire them for their absence of false pride. A lady would not, perhaps, do it from choice, but if the parcel has to be carried, she can do it with impunity.
The cost of cottages necessarily depends on the amount of accommodation they afford, and the strength and substantiality of the structure itself.
The extent of accommodation which rural cottages should possess has recently been somewhat arbitrarily determined on sanitary grounds. The miserable hovels in which large families were crowded, and which still unfortunately exist, to the disgrace of our country, have called forth the indignation of all right-minded men, and we have been gradually led to conclude that no cottages are suitable unless they contain five rooms, of which three are bed-rooms, of prescribed dimensions, with minor offices. The principles upon which these dimensions of space have been determined are not very distinctly acknowledged, as will be seen by an examination of the views of different authorities and the regulations of different institutions. These show that the space considered necessary to maintain health in dwellings varies from 240 to 1500 cubic feet for each person.
According to Dr. Arnott—perhaps the greatest authority on this subject as connected with ventilation—the actual quantity of air respired by an adult human being amounts to 300 cubic inches per minute—not quite one-sixth of a foot, or 240 cubic feet in the course of the day, while the total quantity of air, directly or indirectly vitiated during the same period, is 2880 cubic feet. Tredgold, however, states the amount of air respired by an individual to be as much as 800 cubic inches per minute, or nearly half a cubic foot, while the total quantity vitiated during 24 hours he considers to be at least 4320 cubic feet.
These figures are quoted to show the wide difference of opinion which has been expressed by high authorities on the vital point of respiration ; and if we examine the views practically carried out at our various national institutions in the space given to each person, we shall find parallel instances of diversity. For example, the space admitted to be sufficient by the police authorities under the Lodging-house Act is 240 cubic feet per person ; in the dormitories of the barracks of our army the quantity deemed sufficient has been 500 cubic feet, although the Commission on Warming and Ventilation to the General Board of Health urged that this space should be increased to 700 or 800 cubic feet per man. In hospitals, where obvious reasons exist for increased space, the amount varies from 1000 to 1500 cubic feet each person ; in the prisons 800 cubic feet seems to be the recognised space, and in the model lodging-houses about 550 cubic feet is given.
In spite of this prevailing diversity, experience clearly points to the adoption of the following dimensions of space for cottages :
The ventilation which will render these spaces sufficient is gained by having a fire-place and window in each room, with the door entering directly from the porch, passage, or stairs. Practically, all minute refinements in the art of ventilation are found inapplicable. In addition to these desiderata, each cottage should be provided with a pantry within the dwelling, commanding a free passage of air through it. The scullery, and not the living room, should have a copper and sink for washing, which should be a fixture; an oven is a desirable, but not an essential addition. The out-offices should consist of a small shed, for wood and coal ; a privy detached, with facility for emptying it; and an ash-pit, so connected with the privy that the ashes may be used to prevent effluvium. The whole premises should be perfectly drained. All the roof water should be preserved, and a supply of well-water should also be provided. The yard and walks (if any) should be paved or gravelled, so as to preserve cleanliness within the dwelling.
* According to the population returns of the Census of 1861, the number of individuals constituting families of the sizes mentioned below appears to be in the following proportion ; of course, as there are families of other sizes in the same district, these figures represent only those families specially selected to illustrate the point before us :
The late Duke of Bedford, in 1819, published, in the Journal of the Royal Agricultural Society of England, the designs and particulars of the several kinds of cottages he was erecting on his Bedfordshire and Devonshire estates. He had directed his surveyor to prepare plans of cottages, suitable for families of different sizes, singly and in blocks, and some most excellent designs will be found in the tenth volume of the Royal Agricultural Society’s Journal. The Editor has selected from them the plans on the [above] :-one showing a block of four cottages, in which two have two bed-rooms, and two three bed-rooms each ; the other showing a pair of cottages, in which each has a single bed-room.
On Sir Henry W. Dashwood’s estate, in Oxfordshire, may be seen some excellent cottages, which contain three bed-rooms, but one is placed on the groundfloor and two above; and scullery, pantry, &c., form a lean-to.
Captain Dashwood, under whose direction the cottages on the Kirtlington estate were erected, thus explains the advantages of the design : “ The downstair bedroom is adopted because it is found that a farm labourer, though requiring a third bed-room at one stage of his family’s growth, does not require it for any length of time, as his family are either very young, or as soon as able go out to service. The ground floor bed-room can, at such times, be used for a lodger ; or when the parents get old they can retire to this room and admit a married child, or even another couple, to help to pay the rent. The old woman, by looking after the children, enables the young wife to attend to work, and the old man can help to gain a living, by doing duties which frequently devolve on children, to the loss of their education.
The advantages of this plan are
First—That of enabling old and young people to reside under one roof, thereby securing nearly all the advantages of two cottages.
Second—It secures greater privacy from the position of the rooms, as the rooms are all distinct from each other, and the partition walls are constructed of brick, and not lath and plaster, as is the case with ordinary three-roomed cottages.
Third—It secures greater warmth and less draught ; and
Fourth—The third down-stairs room will be found available, if required, as a workshop, or as a bed-room, especially suitable for a crippled child or an aged parent.”
A modification of the same arrangement of sleeping rooms is shown by the following woodcut of a cottage designed by the Editor, in which the scullery forms a small covered yard, extending from the cottage to the outbuildings. The advantage of this arrangement is, that the yard and scullery being one, and under cover, the former is always dry, and the latter more spacious than under ordinary circumstances, whilst it is so constructed that it cannot be misappropriated as a living room.
Provision for married people without children, and for old couples whose children have left them, is a desideratum of importance; and the single bed-room cottage, erected by the Duke of Bedford, is a very good one for the purpose. But the plan suggested by Lady Caroline Kerrison is perhaps superior, inasmuch as the bed-rooms are all on the ground-floor, and are therefore more suitable for old people than bed-rooms upstairs.
Lady Kerrison’s plan is shown beneath.
With respect to the improvement and alteration of old cottages to meet the requirements of the present day, Lord Palmerston is of opinion that “it is not necessary to pull down old cottages to build new ones. A great deal can be done, at a moderate cost, in improving the old ones.” At Broadlands, his lordship has personally superintended the enlargement and alteration of his old cottages, so as to render them free from those objections which are so repugnant to good feeling. Sufficient bed-room accommodation, good drainage, and ventilation have been his primary objects, while the poor man’s comfort has been studied by the substitution of boarded for stone or brick floors, and by the provision of those little conveniences, such as cupboards and shelves, which we all know how to appreciate in our own houses. Without entering upon any details as to the cost of alterations and additions which may be made to existing cottages to render them conformable to present views, it is manifest that very much may be done with them at a less expense than by the erection of new cottages, an advantage which will enable landowners to adjust the rent in some measure to the circumstances of the labourers on their estates.
It is not here intended to discuss the question of wages. Theoretically it would be affirmed that the able-bodied man should be in receipt of such pay as will enable him to satisfy the just demands of his landlord : practically, however, it is not so ; and we must deal with the question as we find it. In the northern counties, the average weekly wages of able-bodied men, employed on farms, will be found to be 13s. 6d. ; in the midland counties they are 11s. ; and in the southern counties not quite 10s. Although there is a wide difference in the earnings of the labourers in different counties, in no instance is it possible for any labourer with a large family, by which the wife is disqualified from earning anything, to pay 3s. 6d. a week out of his wages for house rent.