Wednesday, August 3, 2011

George Washington Disapproves

 George Washington, sometime before the age of 16, transcribed many Rules of Civility & 
Decent Behaviour In Company and Conversation.
The Prude has found a kindred spirit in Young George. 
Below she shares her Ten Favorite Rules in no particular order.
She didn’t change the spelling. What was good for George is good for her.

5th If You Cough, Sneeze, Sigh, or Yawn, do it not Loud but Privately; and Speak not in your Yawning, but put Your handkercheif or Hand before your face and turn aside.

7th Put not off your Cloths in the presence of Others, nor go out your Chamber half Drest.

12th Shake not the head, Feet, or Legs rowl not the Eys lift not one eyebrow higher than the other wry not the mouth, and bedew no mans face with your Spittle, by approaching too near him when you Speak.

16th Do not Puff up the Cheeks, Loll not out the tongue rub the Hands, or beard, thrust out the lips, or bite them or keep the Lips too open or too Close.
49th Use no Reproachfull Language against any one neither Curse nor Revile.
50th Be not hasty to beleive flying Reports to the Disparagement of any.
65th Speak not injurious Words neither in Jest nor Earnest Scoff at none although they give Occasion.

74th When Another Speaks be attentive your Self and disturb not the Audience if any hesitate in his Words help him not nor Prompt him without desired, Interrupt him not, nor Answer him till his Speech be ended.

76th While you are talking, Point not with your Finger at him of Whom you Discourse nor Approach too near him to whom you talk especially to his face.

82d undertake not what you cannot perform but be carefull to keep your promise.


Lori said...

Dearest Prude,

I remember reading Washington's rules about ten years ago or so. I recall that one rule declared you should not hum in public.

I am such a hummer that I've modified the rule for myself: Hum not within three feet of another soul when you are out in public. And yet I found myself breaking the rule today on more than one occasion. I don't believe another was "bedew-ed by my spittle, however, so that's some consolation.

Joanie said...

Great rules for us to live by.
Thanks for the reminder.

Robin J. Steinweg said...

I wonder if the 12th and the 16th would account for the serene expression on George's face? I wonder if these behaviors, if taught to our young, would negate the need for wrinkle creams?
I wonder if the Prude might someday grace us with more Washingtonian wisdom?