Victorian dating etiquette

Sex and marriage: Victorian 19th century advice for single women - Telegraph

victorian dating etiquette

She also learned French and the rules of etiquette as well as the art of conversation and the art of silence. COMING OUT--THE COURTSHIP RITUAL. Coming. The British Library has unearthed a Victorian self-help book for single women that covers the benefits of marriage, shatters 'old-maid'. The Victorian era began with Queen Victoria's coronation in and ended to be as respectable as their wealthier counterparts, but the rules were more lax.

Another family member had to be present in the room. There was no physical contact between the woman and the gentleman until marriage.

Dating in the Victorian Era - Rejecting the Unsuitable Suitor

That was the only touch, which was accepted between a man and a woman, who was not engaged to him. A woman was allowed some liberties, however. She could flirt with her fan, as this behavior was within the protocol of accepted behavior. An unmarried girl would never date a man at the night. This was considered extremely impolite. Even if the girl entered the stage of courtship, she could never walk with the gentleman.

Women were restrained to ride alone in the closed carriage with a man, expect for a close relative. The girl should not be invited by any gentleman at his place.

victorian dating etiquette

If engaged, the gentleman could not turn back to see any other girl. Even after an engagement, the couple was not allowed to have sexual behavior.

The Dating Traditions During the Victorian Period

In the relationship, intelligence was not at all required, neither any interest in the politics. The dating would firstly begin when the couple would speak to one another. The next step was to go out for a walk and then lastly by keeping company. If her fan was half-open, she was friend-zoning him.

Victorian era courtship rules and marriage facts

If the fan was open wide, she really liked him. Gizmodo While men did not have fans to communicate with, they did carry some type of business or calling card in fact, women often had them too, but they were more for the purpose of social introduction. Some men had cards made for the express purpose of clandestine flirting, and would pass them to a woman without anyone noticing.

Unless and until the female recipient read the card, its true message would remain a mystery. What appeared in the cards was not always PG: Usually the tone of the letter is vague and contains assurances that the honored lady thanks the gentleman for his offer but she cannot accept his proposal.

10 Ridiculous Victorian Etiquette Rules

The Victorian precept that a lady "never explains or complains" is followed rigidly. To readers today the index titles for these letters sound wildly humorous. Consider the titles "Refusal on the grounds of dislike", "Refusal on the grounds of unsteadiness of the suitor", and "Refusal on the grounds that the suitor is much younger than herself".

victorian dating etiquette

The short paragraph headed "Refusal on the grounds of dislike" is important information to a historian today for what it reveals about the life of men in That such a letter was not absurd to include in a serious work is mute testimony to the number of young men who "failed" in the world.

The contents of the letter are brief: The man who assisted in effecting a brother's ruin, is not a suitable partner for his sister; and a moment's reflection might have convinced you that your agency in the matter to which I allude, has earned for you, not the love, but the unchangeable dislike of Your conduct during the last two years has been made known to me, and, viewing you in the light of a dangerous man, I do not desire anymore intimate acquaintance.

I could not reasonably expect happiness from a union with an individual who has destroyed the mental quiet of more than one young person, by his total disregard for what is due to the weaker by the stronger sex