Polite Society At Home And Abroad Book Antique Victorian.
This fascinating antique book from 1891 is entitled Polite Society at Home and Abroad, and is authored by Annie Randall White. It is just full to the brim, overflowing with all things that pertain to Victorian society, that is, its social norms, customs, manners, etc. The inside chapters include: Value of etiquette. Home manners. A few words to the children. In the street. Salutations. Washington etiquette. Introductions. Going into society. Parties, balls, and like entertainments. Traveling manners. Conversation an art. Wedding customs. In the dining room. Table manners. Gentlemen’s calls. Ladies’ calls. Appearance in public. Anniversaries. The timid, the awkward, and shy. The guest chamber. Letter writing. Taste and harmony in dress. The boys and girls at home. The house of mourning. Etiquette of visiting. A short chapter on business. Parents and children. After marriage. Floral language. Etiquette of births and christenings. Miscellaneous rules of etiquette. Home courtesies. Toilet recipes. Etiquette of the schoolroom. What shall we read?. The section on the Language of Flowers is especially endearing, as the Victorians believed that every flower symbolized some virtue. A bouquet could be assembled with all the virtues you would want to portray, and young men would “read” these things about a young woman by the flowers she would carry.
The Toilet section covers all things important to beauty of its day, such as: care of the teeth, care of the complexion, foul breath, removing flesh-worms, removing freckles, perspiration, bran mittens, preventing chapping, beautiful hair, remedy for baldness, preventing the hair from turning gray, dyeing gray hair, soaps on the hair, moles, the bath, care of the eyes, removing styes, cutting the nails, care of the hands, moist hands, pomades and oil for the hair, care of the feet, bunions and corns, chilblains, tincture of roses, how to darken faded false hair, remedy for burned kid or leather shoes, to clean black dresses, nightcaps, to whiten the arms, walnut stain, hair restorer, fat people, freshness of the skin, mosquitoes, to remove tan, to prevent discoloration by a bruise, watermelon juice, danger of cosmetics, hives, to avoid wrinkles, toilet recipes, cold feet.
A couple fun passages read:
"Both ladies and gentlemen will be very careful to keep their breaths sweet and pure. We wish there were some law to prevent people from polluting their breaths with onions and tobacco when they are going into mixed company. No one has a right to make himself in any manner offensive to others. All the laws of good breeding forbid it."
"A young bride's outfit should be selected with special reference to the position in life she expects to occupy, and the income of her future husband." "Green corn is a problem, some eating it from the cob, others calling it barbarous. We think it is the proper way, however; and we are borne out by the usages of good society."
All in all quite a considerable source of information for all things Victorian, whether how a young debutante should enter society, to gentlemen and ladies’ social calls. This blue cover hardbound book has a lady with a fan and gentleman caller embossed into the front, with silver and gold contrasts. The cover boards and spine have very little wear wear. The endpapers have the usual cracking, and are tight and holding well. Each page has a red rectangular cartouche around the text. All the pages are gilt tipped and the gold is bright. The pages have a nice aged patina, and are very clean. Please note: the frontispiece illustration and title page are not as yellow as shown, but the same color as the following photos. About 450 pages, quite entertaining and a great source of American life in the Victorian age. Overall size is aprox 6.5 x 8.75 x 2 inches thick.
Antique Rose Prints, Paul de Longpre, Catherine Klein, Etiquette and Medical Books, Yard Long
Layaway. Antique Victorian Rose Prints, Yard Long, Etiquette and Medical books. Combined shipping.