Though today we know there is no hard and fast rule for what exactly makes a woman“ladylike” (orhowever else you’d describe a female acting “properly” in public), that definitely wasn’t the case for women in the Victorian era.
Obviously, every culture has itsown set ofrules that everyonemust follow in order to remain polite and kind regardless of whether they’re at a fancy dinner party or simply hanging out with their friends. Women, however, had a much stricter set of guidelines that varied throughout history until finally finding a way to break free from such absurdly high expectations.
You could definitely argue that those living in the 1800s during Queen Victoria’s reign had it worst of all. Guidelines described in bookslikeA Hand-Book of Etiquette for Ladies, authored by “an American Lady,” and Charles Varle’sMoral Encyclopaedia, detailed exactly how every female should carry herself in order to be considered a “lady.”
Take a look at some of the examples from those guides below and let us know if we missed any of the more ridiculous rules you’ve heard about from back in the day.
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1. Go Easy On The Shine
2. Keep Your Nails Tidy
3. Pipe Down
4. Don’t Venture Far From Home
5. Keep It Simple
6. Avoid Dirty Jokes
7. Wait For A Man To Make The First Move
8. Skip Frivolous Fictional Entertainment
9. Don’t Talk About Yourself
10. Skip The Handwear
11. Don’t Be A Literal Diva
12. Never Admit Guilt
13. Avoid Friends