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Five Rules for the Wearing of Jewellery

The Pearl Necklace, c.1905 by Henry Tonks 1862-1937
The Pearl Necklace, c.1905 by Henry Tonks 1862-1937

1) A lady’s morning dress should be simple and refined, and suited to the time of day. Neither is much jewellery consistent; plain gold and silver ornaments are permissible, but never precious stones, except in rings.

2) In the ball-room jewellery is generally worn in sets; ornaments never look so well if pieces of different sets are displayed together; that is to say, if diamonds are in the brooch, a necklet of pearls and earrings set with emeralds would not look well if worn on the same occasion. All the ornaments should match in character as much as possible, but variety is allowed in the matter of bracelets.

3) It is not considered good taste for a man to wear much jewellery. A plain, handsome ring, studs, and sleeve-links, a watch-chain without pendants, will always look more seemly than a great display of elaborate ornaments.

4) Brides do not wear much jewellery, especially when they are young girls.

5) At the opera, the full brilliancy of evening dress is seen, with tiaras or diamond stars or combs in every head, and a proportionate display of jewellery on the neck and dress.

Etiquette of Good Society by Lady Colin Campbell
Etiquette for Every Day by Mrs. Humphry

Manners for Men: In Church


Worshippers amused by off-key singer

I know a young man who makes it a practice to arrive late in church every Sunday. I often wish that he did not go to church, for he makes me cordially despise him, thus disturbing the calm and quiet of the proper frame of mind for Sundays. I conclude that he likes to be looked at, though why he should do so is not apparent. It is, in fact, not only rude, but irreverent, to be late in church for the beginning of the service.

If one should be accidentally late, it is good manners to wait till the congregation rises from the kneeling posture before making one’s way to a seat. It is almost an awful thing to interrupt a prayer. But I have seen people do it with no more scruple than if they were passing in a crowded street.

Eighteen inches are the measurement of space allowed to each sitter in the churches. In some on the space it may be more; in others ma? occupy, it may be less. But I have reason to believe that this is the average. Now, if any man of extra size should find himself in a pew with other persons, he must, in common courtesy, keep himself as well within the limits of eighteen inches as the width of his shoulders will allow. But I have occasionally seen quite slim young men sprawl far beyond the frontier lines.

Lounging is a habit of the day, and there are men who get themselves into marvellously corkscrew attitudes, in church as elsewhere. Fidgety men are more so in church than anywhere else. They seem to find it impossible to keep still. Sometimes they even produce a cough wherewith to amuse themselves, though they are not troubled with it at any other time. The charm of a reposeful manner is denied to them. Reverence for the sacred place conduces to a quiet manner; but this is not always felt by those who attend public worship.

The conventional idea seems to be that such assemblies are merely phases of social life; that it is respectable to be there; and that the service and the sermon are things to be worried through in deference to a prevalent idea that they form part of an institution that is generally regarded as excellent. The small minority are those who regard church services in their true light as lifting the thoughts above earthly things, and yet by no means unfitting them for earth. Where, for instance, could a better law of good manners be found than in the Book of Books? A glance at the end of the fourth chapter of Ephesians will show a code of conduct that, if followed, would make a man a perfect member of society.

Manners for Men by Mrs. C. E. Humphry

Manners for Men: At a Restaurant

William Strang - Bank Holiday, 1912
William Strang – Bank Holiday, 1912

When accompanying ladies who express a wish for refreshment, it is not necessary to select a very expensive restaurant or confectioner’s. One suitable to the social status of the party should be chosen. The young man must pay for what his companions eat and drink, and very often this is a most embarrassing matter. He may have enough money in his pocket to defray the bill, and he may not. In any case, he is often unable to afford it, but the probabilities are that if he has the wherewithal about him, he will pay in order to extricate himself from an awkward predicament, even though he may consequently be crippled financially for some days to come.

If he has only two or three shillings in his pocket, he feels extremely uncomfortable. No well-bred woman or girl woman would would ever place an acquaintance on the horns of such a dilemma. But unfortunately there are many girls and women who are lacking in taste and refinement, and who would regard it as an excellent joke to play such a trick upon a “fellow,” as they would probably call him, and enjoy his discomfort.

The best thing to do in such a case is to be perfectly frank and open. “I’m extremely sorry, but I have not sufficient cash with me for the purpose.” It is very disagreeable to have to say so, but it is less The best mortifying than to have to acknowledge it to the waiter at the restaurant. A young man told me that he had once, in such a case, to leave the table on pretense of speaking to the proprietor and fly round to a pawnbroker’s to pledge his watch.

A really well-bred girl or woman would make it clear that she intended to pay for her own bear her own meal, and that only on that condition would she accept the escort of the young man.

Sometimes after a run on a bicycle or a hot walk, a young man will say to his sister and her friend, “Come in and have an ice.” If the a man’s friend is one of the unscrupulous sort, she will very probably run him into what, for him, is a considerable expense. He must pay it, however, and the worst of it is that he cannot sit there and let her eat all by herself. Even his sister, should she be present, must in good manners join in to a certain extent. Otherwise the implied reproof would be too obvious for good breeding.

Manners for Men by Mrs. C. E. Humphry