Part 2 out of 3
inquired, "Reader, have you ever drunk a cup of tea?" There is something
undeniably heart-warming and conversation-making in a cup of steaming
hot tea served with delicious cream; it is an ideal prescription for
banishing loneliness. Perhaps it is not so much the tea itself, as the
circle of happy friends eager for a pleasant chat.
As the simple tea does not require very much preparation or planning, we
will discuss it briefly here and take up only the formal tea in detail.
The simple tea may be served for any guest who chances in between four or
six o'clock in the afternoon. Sometimes a hostess devotes a stated time
each day or on certain days in the week which are known to her friends,
to tea, and she lets her friends know just what the hour is and that they
are welcome to join for a bite and a little chat whenever they feel so
inclined. There may be one or several little tea tables which are
brought into the drawing-room when the guests are ready for tea.
Covering each one is a dainty lace or linen doily, or an embroidered
tea-cloth. If tea tables are not available, one large table may serve
the purpose, but it also must be covered with small doilies at each cover
instead of one large table-cloth.
The hostess and one or two of her friends may serve. The tea is made at
the table and served with very small, dainty sandwiches and all kinds of
quaintly-shaped cakes. Bonbons, salted nuts and sometimes ices are also
If the hostess does not own dainty tea equipage, the beverage may be made
in the kitchen and brought in ready to serve, fragrant and steaming. The
custom of the afternoon tea is confined almost wholly to women, though it
is not bad form by any means to have gentlemen present for tea.
A tea wagon offers the most attractive service for an afternoon tea. It
should not be in the room where the hostess receives but should be
wheeled in from an adjoining room (the dining-room usually). The maid,
if there is one, performs this service, the hostess herself if there is
no maid. The table should not be overcrowded and if there is not ample
room for sandwich trays these should be brought in separately.
The china should be thin and of the same general kind though not
necessarily of the same pattern. There should be sugar--preferably
block sugar with tongs, a pitcher of cream, slices of lemon, mint leaves
and cloves. If the hostess makes the tea herself she adds sugar, cream,
lemon or whatever else the guest may desire before she passes the cup.
The hostess who cares about her reputation for hospitality will perfect
herself in the gentle art of making delicious tea before the day comes
for her to prove herself before her guests.
THE FORMAL TEA
When the afternoon tea becomes formal and ceremonious it takes the place
of the customary "at home." Invitations must be sent a week or ten days
in advance, and if one is unable to attend, a polite note of explanation
must be sent. However, no answer is necessary if one intends to be
With this more pretentious affair, the refreshments are served in the
dining-room instead of in the drawing-room or outdoors as is sometimes
done at simpler teas. The hissing urn always holds the place of honor
(except on very warm days when iced tea or iced coffee may be served).
Trays of thinly sliced bread are on the table, and dainty sandwiches in
large variety. Fruit salads are never amiss, and strawberries with cream
are particularly delightful when in season. Then, of course, there are
cakes and bonbons and ices, although the latter are usually confined to
At a ceremonious tea, the hostess stands near the drawing-room door to
greet each guest as she arrives. If her daughters receive with her, they
stand to her right, and help in making any necessary introductions. As
many guests as can be conveniently entertained may be invited to the
formal tea; but the refreshments must never be so substantial that they
will interfere with dinner. In fact, the tea must be kept true to its
name, for if other eatables besides those fashionable to the tea are
served, it is a reception in substance if not in name.
When one wishes to invite eighteen or twenty friends, and does not wish
to undertake the trouble or expense of a dinner, the "high tea" is in
order. It is usually held on a Sunday evening. At these "high teas"
small tables are invariably used, four guests being placed at each table.
It is customary to allow the guests to form their own quartettes, for in
this manner they will usually find table companions who will be
congenial--and a most unfortunate occurrence at a "high tea," or in fact
any reception, is a seating arrangement untasteful to the guests
themselves. The little tables are covered with snowy tea cloths and
decorated with a sprig of flowers in a colored vase occupying the
position of honor.
Perhaps more important than the tea itself, is the appearance of the
tea-table. The well-equipped table is adorned with fine china and
gleaming silver, and there are always a few flowers to add to the beauty
of the setting. Ferns may be used instead of flowers, but there must be
no elaborate ribbons or decorations such as appear on the dinner-table.
As a matter of fact, the tea-table should always present an appearance of
unpremeditated simplicity. It must never seem as though it had been
especially prepared and planned for the occasion. Candles, dimmed with
pale shades, may be on the table when the day is gloomy and dark. In
winter, for instance, when the days are shorter, softly-glowing candles
aid considerably in the cheerful ness of the afternoon tea. Tea napkins
are used instead of those of regular dinner size.
A pretty manner of serving sandwiches or cakes is to have them in
silver-rimmed wicker baskets which can be passed easily from one guest to
another. If the tea is informal, wicker chairs and tables may also be
used. This is especially pleasing and appropriate when the tea is served
on the porch or in the garden.
DRESS AT TEA TIME
Tea time is always the fashionable time of the day and there is
sufficient variety in appropriate materials and style for a woman to find
a gown that is more than ordinarily individual and becoming. For an
informal tea the hostess may wear a clinging gown of silk but she should
not dress very sumptuously for her guests will come simply attired and it
is hardly hospitable to be a great deal more elaborately dressed than
they. Afternoon frocks of silk, velvet, cloth, etc., or of summer
materials are suitable for the guest. When the weather demands it she
wears an attractive wrap.
In selecting dresses for teas, and, indeed for all occasions, it is well
to remember that the more ornamentation there is the less elegance there
will be. The materials should be rich but not showy--the best-dressed
person is the one who calls least attention to his or her clothes.
One may wear jewels but not heavy necklaces or glittering brooches or
other flashing stones. If the affair is a formal one the hair may be as
elaborately marcelled as for the evening. In this case the gown should
be a rich creation of the kind suitable only for such events.
If the tea is given for a debutante it may be a very festive occasion and
/decollete/ gowns may be worn. Dark colors are rarely worn and the
debutante herself should be a fairy dream in a lovely creation of silk,
georgette, crepe-de-thane, or something else equally girlish and
Elderly women wear black lace or satin though certain shades of brown and
blue and nearly all shades of gray are irreproachably good taste if--and
this "if" is an important one--they are becoming.
THE GARDEN PARTY
Charming indeed is the simple entertainment of the garden party. It is an
undebatable fact that informal entertainments are always more enjoyable
than those that are strictly formal, and the easy harmony of the garden
party is certainly informal to an acceptable degree.
Someone once said of the lawn fete (which is merely another name for a
garden party) that "a green lawn, a few trees, a fine day and something
to eat" constitute a perfect garden party. To this we add, that the
guests must be carefully selected and the grounds must be attractive.
The garden party must be held in the open air; refreshments are served
outside and the guests remain outside until they are ready to depart. At
Newport, where garden parties are quite the vogue, the invitations are
sent weeks in advance, and, if the weather is bad, the party is held
indoors. But ordinarily it must be held entirely on the grounds. A
large porch is a great advantage, for if there is a sudden downpour of
rain, the guests may repair to its shelter.
There are many opportunities for the hostess to show consideration and
hospitality at the garden party. Easy chairs arranged in groups or
couples under spreading trees always make for comfort. Some hostesses
have a tent provided on the lawn for the purpose of serving the
refreshments--a custom which earns the approbation of fastidious guests
who search the food for imaginary specks of dust when it is served in the
RECEIVING THE GUESTS
Invitations to garden parties may be sent ten days to two weeks in
advance, and a prompt reply of acceptance or regret is expected. The
hostess receives on the lawn--never in the house. The guests, however,
drive up to the door of the house, are directed upstairs to deposit their
wraps (if they wish they may keep them with them), and then are shown to
the part of the grounds where the hostess is receiving. A servant should
be in attendance to see that each guest is properly directed, unless the
grounds where the hostess is receiving are visible from the house.
After being greeted by the hostess, guests may wander about the grounds,
stopping to chat with different groups, and seeking the refreshment table
when they are weary. The hostess must be sure that her lawns are
faultlessly mowed, and that the tennis courts are in order. Lawn tennis
has had a large share in the making of the garden party's popularity, and
the wise hostess will always be sure that her courts are in readiness for
those who enjoy the game.
Cold refreshments are usually served at the garden party. Salads, ham and
tongue sandwiches, fruits, jellies, ices, cakes, candies and punch are in
order. Particular care must be taken in serving the refreshments to
avoid any accidents or mussiness. There is nothing more disturbing to
both hostess and guest than to have a glass of punch or a dish of
strawberries overturned on a lawn, and pains should be taken to avoid
accidents of this kind.
ON THE LAWN
Music is a pleasing feature at the garden party. A pretty custom, now
enjoying vogue among the most fashionable, is to have the orchestra
hidden by a clump of trees or shrubbery, but near enough to be heard
distinctly. In the outdoors music is never too loud to interfere with
conversation, and it is always a source of keen enjoyment to the guests.
Also, it adds a solemn charm to the natural beauties of the occasion.
In planning a garden party, it is best to hire all the glass, silver and
china from the caterer, as there is always considerable breakage no
matter how careful the servants may be. If the hostess does use her own
china and glassware, she must never use her best unless she is willing to
take the risk of having it broken. Undoubtedly, the garden party is
troublesome, but it offers possibilities of tremendous enjoyment and
amusement, and when properly arranged is always a success.
The correct time for a garden party is between three and six in the
afternoon. Sometimes it lasts until seven if the day is long and the
guests are congenial. It rarely lasts into the evening, however, unless
it is in celebration of some special event. Sometimes evening lawn
receptions are held, and they are remarkably pretty. An appropriate time
to hold an evening garden party is in celebration of a summer wedding
anniversary. The grounds are brilliantly lighted with many-hued Japanese
lanterns or tiny colored electric lights twining in and out among the
trees. Benches and chairs are set in groups or pairs underneath the
trees. Music is usually or the porch instead of on the grounds. The
house is open, and the younger guests may dance if they wish. Supper is
served either outdoors or indoors as convenient. Altogether the garden
party, whether held in the afternoon or evening, is a picturesque,
charming and delightful affair and deserves the wide popularity it is
enjoying both in America and England.
DRESS FOR GARDEN PARTIES AND LAWN FESTIVALS
Summer frocks, in their airy flimsiness and gay colors are ideally fitted
for the colorful background of a garden or lawn party. And the lady's
escort, in his white trousers and dark sack coat adds still further a
note of festivity.
For the garden party, the woman wears her prettiest light-colored frock
and flower-trimmed hat. Gay parasols may be carried if they match, or
harmonize with, the rest of the costume. Light shoes are more attractive
than dark ones with light frocks.
A garden party night be compared with a drama, the costumes of the guests
deciding whether or not it would be termed pure romance or light comedy.
Here, amidst summer flowers, woman's natural beauty is heightened, and
the wrong color schemes in dress, the wrong costumes for the setting, jar
as badly as a streak of black paint across the hazy canvas of a landscape
painting by an impressionist.
WOMAN'S GARDEN COSTUME
Organdie seems to be the material best suited for the garden-party
frock. For the younger person there could be no prettier frock for
garden or lawn party, or indeed for any outdoor afternoon occasion.
For the older woman, a dress of dotted Swiss, pierette crepe, or French
lawn is becoming. The color should be light and attractive, but the
style may be as simple as one pleases. Lilac is a pretty color for the
older woman, and sunset yellow is becoming both to age and youth alike,
when it is appropriately combined with some more somber shade.
There are several color combinations that are very beautiful in lawn and
garden settings. We will mention them here, as they might be valuable in
selecting frocks for such occasions as mentioned. Violet and orange,
both pale and not vivid, offer a delicate harmony of color that is
nothing short of exquisite. Old rose and Nile green are equally
effective. Orchid, for the person whose complexion can bear it, may be
combined with such vivid colors as red, green and blue, presenting a
contrast so strong and clear and beautiful that it reminds one of a
glorious sunset. Black satin, for the elderly person, is quite festive
enough for the garden party when it is combined with a pretty shade of
henna or old blue or some other bit of color.
Styles may be simple, but colors must always be gay and rich as the
colors from Nature's own palette. And the hat that is broad-brimmed and
massed with bright flowers, is a fitting complement for such a costume.
THE MAN AT THE GARDEN PARTY
Of course the decorative art of dress has for a long time been entrusted
wholly into the hands of woman, but man may be just as attractive on
festive occasions, if he follows the rules of correct dress. For him
there is less color to be considered, but just as much effect.
The younger man is well-dressed for the garden party when he wears a suit
of white flannel or serge with colored or white linen, a bright tie,
straw or panama hat, and oxfords of white or black, or a combination of
white and black. Loose jackets of black and white striped flannel may
also be worn with white duck trousers, if one is young. Then there are
the attractive light suits of gray twillett that are so effective when
worn with a white waistcoat and bright tie.
For the older man, a jacket of black and white homespun is extremely
appropriate. It is smart when worn with a waistcoat of white flannel,
white shirt and collar and gayly figured tie of silk foulard. Trousers
of white flannel would complete this excellent costume for the elderly
man, and with a panama hat that boasts a black band, and black-and-white
oxfords he is ready for the most exclusive garden or lawn party.
No one should attempt a house party whose home is not comfortably large
enough and who is not able to provide every convenience for the guests.
One need not necessarily be a millionaire to hold a successful house
party, but it is certainly necessary to have a spacious home and
sufficient means to make things pleasant for the guests every minute of
the time that they are in the house.
While the success of a house party rests directly on the host and
hostess, it also depends largely upon the guests themselves. They are
expected to contribute to the entertainment. They may be good
conversationalists, or witty humorists, or clever in arranging surprises.
A man or woman who is jolly, eager to please is always invited to house
parties and welcomed by both hostess and guests with equal pleasure and
SENDING THE INVITATION
The invitations to house parties are important. While it is
complimentary for a guest to be invited to "spend a few days with me next
week" he or she will undoubtedly be ill at east during the visit and
fearful of encroaching upon the hospitality of the hostess. It is always
more considerate and better form to state the definite duration of the
visit, for instance, mentioning that a train leaves the guest's town at
eleven-thirty on a certain day, and that another train leaves for that
same guest's town, at a certain hour on the day he is to leave. Thus
gives the guest clearly, and without discourtesy, the precise time he is
expected to remain at the home of the hostess, and he may remain the full
time without any vague pre monitions of undesired presence. If the
hostess did not state the time of arrival and departure the guest should
in her acceptance give suggestive dates leaving them subject to change at
the discretion of the hostess. Any other plan is embarrassing to both
hostess and guest since neither can make plans for the future until she
finds out what the other intends to do.
The usual duration of house party visits are three days--often they last
for a week end--although some continue a week or even longer. The lady
of the house usually writes a note in the name of her husband and herself
both, inviting Mr. and Mrs. Blank to her house for three days or three
months as she (the hostess) pleases. A clear explanation as to how to
reach the house is given, and also the necessary information regarding
trains and schedules.
These invitations must be answered promptly and if for any reason the
invited one cannot attend, the reason should be given. If there is any
doubt as to how to get to the house of the hostess; questions may be
asked in the answer to the invitation, and the hostess must answer them
WHEN THE GUESTS ARRIVE
If the hostess cannot be present to receive her guests, the duty devolves
upon the daughter of the house or an intimate friend. As soon as a guest
arrives he is shown to his room for after the long railroad trip one is
usually dusty, tired and not in the mood for conversation or
pleasantries. A bath, a nap, and a cup of coffee or tea, or, if the
weather is warm, an iced drink are most welcome.
The taxi fare from the station may be paid by either hostess or guest.
The former may consider that the other is her guest from the moment she
arrives and the latter may include this item in her traveling expenses.
Generally speaking, the hostess bears all of the expenses of the guest
while she is in her home but special services such as laundry work,
pressing, etc., may be paid for by the guest herself.
It is bad form to invite numerous friends and then to crowd them two in a
room to make a place for all. Of course a mother and daughter may be
asked to share the same room if individual beds are provided; but two
women, meeting at the house party for the first time, cannot be expected
graciously to accept and enjoy sharing the same bed and room together.
The furnishing of the guest chamber may be modest, but it must always be
neat and comfortable. To make the visit a pleasant one, the room that
the guest will occupy during his stay must be one that invites
memory--one that by its very cheerfulness and comfort remains fondly in
one's memory. The personal tastes of the guests themselves should be
ascertained in assigning rooms to them; some may like a sunny room,
others may not be able to endure it; and the considerate hostess will so
arrange that each one of her guests is pleased.
There are numerous little services that the hostess must make sure are
provided for her visiting guests. Scissors, thread and needles should be
in one of the dressing-table drawers; stationery, pens, ink, and a
calendar should be in the writing-desk. Books, chosen especially for
the occupant, should be scattered about. The thoughtful hostess will
make a round of the rooms before the arrival of the guests and make sure
that every detail is attended to. Fresh flowers should be placed in the
It is the duty of the guest to see that her room is kept in order. If
there is no maid she should attend to it herself and in any case she
should keep her own things in place and watch carefully to see that the
room is at all times exquisitely neat.
ENTERTAINING AT THE HOUSE PARTY
At eight o'clock, or a little later if it is more convenient, all the
guests meet in evening dress at dinner. It is then that the necessary
introductions are made and the guest of honor, if there is one, is
presented. Plans may be made for the next day or two, the hostess
offering suggestions and deferring to the wishes of her guests when they
have attractive plans to submit. The hostess also informs the guests at
what time breakfast and luncheon is served. It is not obligatory for
every guest to be present at luncheon, but it is strictly so at dinner.
The considerate hostess, while endeavoring to fill every moment of her
guests' stay with her, with pleasure and happiness, does not overdo it to
the extent that they will have no time for writing their correspondence,
reading a bit, or taking their customary nap. Unfortunately many of our
hostesses who entertain lavishly at house parties and spare no expense or
effort in making the party a brilliant success, spoil it all by trying to
crowd too much entertainment into the day, forgetting that their guests
need a little time to themselves.
In planning entertainments for the morning, the hostess must remember
that breakfast will be preferred late, and that the women guests,
especially, may prefer to forego breakfast entirely and keep to their
rooms until just before luncheon. Thus it is always best to start any
entertainment in the afternoon. Long drives through the country, tennis,
hockey, golf, card parties--all these are appropriate for the afternoon.
The evening is usually devoted to some special entertainment prepared
sufficiently in advance to render it an important occurrence. A dance
after dinner, a fancy dress ball, or private theatricals are suitable;
and often long moonlight drives, ending with a jolly little picnic, are
planned with great success.
HOSTESS AND GUESTS AT THE HOUSE PARTY
The first duty of the hostess is personally to meet or have her husband
meet the guests as they arrive at the railroad station. It is better form
to have him meet them while she remains at home to receive them.
There are several important rules that the guest must observe. In the
first place, he must not fail to arrive and depart at the exact time
signified in the invitation. If a train is missed, the correct thing to
do is wire immediately so that the host and hostess will not be awaiting
the arrival in vain. Another important rule for the guest is rigidly to
follow and adhere to the laws and the customs of the house: thus if
smoking is not allowed in the bedrooms, the gentlemen must be sure to
refrain from so doing and each guest should adapt his hours to those of
the host and hostess.
One of the most difficult of guests to entertain is one who is peculiar
about his eating. It is an awkward situation and the guest if he can
should eat what is set before him. If this is impossible he may speak
quietly with his hostess, explain the situation and make special
arrangements for food that he can eat. This is excusable if he is on a
diet prescribed by a physician but not if he is simply expressing a
fastidious preference. So many people are vegetarians nowadays that the
hostess will make provision for them and she should in planning her menus
consult the individual tastes of the guests who are under her roof.
Perhaps a guest is unwisely invited to a house-party where someone he or
she particularly dislikes is also a guest. In this case it is a mark of
extreme discourtesy to complain to the host or hostess, or in any way to
show disrespect or dislike towards the other guest. To purposely ignore
him or her, obviously to show one's prejudice, is very rude. It is most
disconcerting to the host for either of them to show discontent or to
leave the house party because of the unwelcome presence of the other. It
is best for them to be formally courteous to each other and not in any
way to interfere with the enjoyment of the other members of the house
party or of the host and hostess who are responsible for it.
To return to the hostess, she has two very important duties--not to
neglect her guests, but to provide them with ample amusement and
entertainment, and again, not to weary them by too much attention. She
may go out during the day if she pleases, either to visit friends or to
do shopping, but she must always be at home for dinner. And she must not
go out so often that the guests will begin to feel slighted.
The good-natured and hospitable host and hostess will put at the disposal
of their guests their entire house and grounds, including their books,
horses, cars, tennis courts and golf links. The duty of the guest is to
avail himself of these privileges with delicacy, neither abusing them nor
hesitating to use them at all. There are some guests who have a tact of
perception, an ease and poise of manner, a savoir faire and calm, kind
disposition that makes them welcome everywhere. They are never petty,
never disagreeable, never quarrelsome, never grouchy. It is a pleasure
to include them in the house party--and they are invariably included.
"TIPPING" THE SERVANTS
The question of feeing or "tipping" the servants has always been a
puzzling one. It may be of advantage here to give an approximate idea of
what the fees should be and to whom they should be given. Attending
circumstances, of course, always govern the exact conditions. Very often
guests, both men and women, unable to estimate correctly what amount is
befitting the servants' services, tip lavishly and without any regard for
services. This borders on the ostentatious, and hence, may be considered
Here are the recognized tips expected of a single woman: for the maid who
keeps her room in order, one dollar or a dollar and a half. (These
figures are based on a period of a week's stay). If this maid has also
helped the guest in her dressing, and preparing the bath for her, two or
two and a half dollars are the customary fee. A tip of from one to two
dollars must be given to the maid who waits on the guest at the table,
and if a chauffeur takes her from and to the station, a dollar is his
A bachelor is expected to be somewhat more generous with his tips. The
boy who cleans and polishes his boots and shoes receives a fee of fifty
or seventy-five cents.
When a married couple is visiting, they usually divide the tips between
them. The wife gives the maid a dollar or a dollar and a half, and the
husband tips the men servants. The butler should receive two dollars at
least, and if he has rendered many special services both to the man and
his wife, he should undoubtedly receive two or three dollars more. On
some occasions the cook is remembered, and the gentleman sends her a
dollar or two in recognition of her culinary art. It must be remembered,
however, that there are no established rules of tipping, and no precedent
to go by. One must be guided by the extent of his income and by the
One more word in closing this chapter. Not everyone can afford to give
elaborate house parties. But this need not interfere with one's
hospitality. The host or hostess who is discouraged from offering
friends simple entertainment because of someone's else magnificent
parties, should cease being discouraged and take pride and pleasure in
the knowledge that they are entertaining their friends as hospitably as
they can. To do a thing simply and sincerely is infinitely finer than to
do a thing extravagantly merely for the sake of ostentation and display.
In homes where there are no servants the guests should take part in the
work around the house unless the hostess shows distinctly that she
prefers for them not to do it. After the visit the guest may send some
little gift in appreciation of the hospitality enjoyed. A bit of
household linen, a book, flowers, or candy are most appropriate. This is
one case where an unsuitable gift is inexcusable for ample opportunity
has been given the donor to study the needs and desires of the hostess.
Within ten days after her departure the guest should write a
bread-and-butter letter to her hostess. This is simply a grateful
expression of appreciation for the hospitality which she enjoyed during
her visit. Great care should be taken to avoid stilted forms.
WHEN THE BACHELOR ENTERTAINS
WHEN THE BACHELOR IS HOST
Until very recently, the bachelor was rarely a host, was rarely expected
to entertain. In fact, some people considered it unconventional to
attend a bachelor entertainment. But with the tremendous increase of
bachelor apartments and bachelor hotels and even bachelor clubs, it is
now quite the usual custom for him to entertain friends at dinner
parties, theater parties, teas and in almost any other way which strikes
However, no bachelor should invite guests to his home unless he has a
full retinue of servants to care for their wants. There should be no
confusion, no awkwardness. If he is a professional man--an artist,
author or musician--he may entertain guests at his studio without
servants, except perhaps one to attend to the buffet supper which is most
usual at such functions. But that is the only exception; a large
entertainment in a bachelor's establishment requires as careful
preparation as a fashionable social function in a well-regulated
When an unmarried man gives house parties, dinners or entertainments of
any kind whatever, he always asks a married woman of his acquaintance to
act as chaperon. She should be the first person invited, and the usual
method of invitation is a personal call at her home.
WELCOMING THE GUESTS
The host receives his guests at the door, welcoming each one with
outstretched hand, and introducing immediately to the chaperon or
chaperons those guests whom they do not already know. When the reception
is a particularly large one, a man servant usually awaits the guests at
the door and the host receives in the drawing-room.
The question has arisen on various occasions, whether or not the bachelor
is expected to provide dressing-rooms for his guests. If as many as
thirty or forty are expected the bed-rooms may be made to serve the
purpose of dressing-rooms for the evening. The matter is one entirely
dependent upon circumstances and convenience when the entertainment is
held in the home of the bachelor himself; but when a large entertainment
is given in a hall, dressing-rooms are of course essential.
Very often, when the reception is held in the bachelor's own apartments,
where there is only one servant, the chaperon is asked to pour the tea
while the host himself serves it. This is a very pretty custom; it
certainly lends dignity and impressiveness to the bachelor entertainment
to see a charming, matron at the head of the table. And having the
bachelor himself serve the refreshments, a certain companionship and
friendliness is created among the guests.
THE BACHELOR's DINNER
Although he is not expected to retaliate in the matter of invitations to
dinners and luncheons, the bachelor often gives dinner parties. For the
host is no less eager to entertain than the hostess, and many unmarried
men find keen pleasure in gathering their friends about them for a
In detail, the bachelor's dinner, formal or informal, is very much like
the ordinary dinner. The same holds true of the luncheon or supper
party. The menu may be identical, if he pleases; but often an elaborate
Chinese, French or Italian menu is decided upon as a novelty.
If the guests are all gentlemen, one butler may attend to all their
wants, including the serving of the courses. But if there are ladies in
the party, the chaperon must be present, and perhaps one or two
white-capped maids to serve the dinner.
If the dinner is given in honor of a lady, her seat is always at the
right of the host at the table. If there is no guest of honor, this
place is filled by the matron who is serving as chaperon.
It is she who makes the first move to leave the dining-room.
The host must extend cordial thanks to the chaperon when she is ready to
depart. It is usually upon her good judgment and influence that the
success of the dinner depends, and surely the host owes her a debt of
gratitude if everything has run smoothly and pleasantly. He also bids
his guests a cordial adieu and graciously accepts their thanks for a
Music is often provided for the entertainment of the guests after a
dinner-party. It is not unusual for the host to obtain the services of
well-known professional singers and players for the evening.
TEA AT A BACHELOR APARTMENT
The bachelor who feels that he must be hospitable to his friends and
entertain them at his home, may safely choose the afternoon tea without
apprehension as it is the simplest of entertainments. Of course a
chaperon is necessary, as she is at all his entertainments; but there is
less restraint and less formality at a tea than at almost any other
Invitations should be issued a week or ten days before the day set for
the tea. Guests may include both sexes; but if there are only gentlemen,
they may be invited verbally. The tea is served in the dining-room, or
if he wishes, the host may have small tea tables laid out in the
drawing-room. A silver tea service is always attractive and pleasing,
and the host may pour the beverage if the guests are all gentlemen. If
ladies are present, either the chaperon may pour, or a servant.
Refreshments should consist of delicate sandwiches, assorted cakes and
wafers, salted almonds, confections and tea. If there are some among the
guests who do not drink tea, chocolate may be served.
As they depart the bachelor host accompanies each one of his guests to
the door bidding him or her a cordial goodby. The chaperon must be
especially thanked for her service and shown particular deference.
Indeed, her host should accompany her after the reception, to her own
door if she is without car or escort.
THE BACHELOR DANCE
Wealthy bachelors find pleasure and diversion in giving huge balls and
dances. Dinner or a midnight supper may be a delightful adjunct to the
dance. A fashionable ball of this kind is sometimes given for the
important purpose of introducing a young sister or another relative to
The ball is rarely, if ever, held in the bachelor's own apartments. He
hires a hall for the occasion, and arranges with several of his married
friends to act as chaperons. They also receive with him and help him
introduce the guests. As these arrive, they divest themselves of their
wraps, in the dressing-rooms provided for the purpose, and then are
received in the ballroom by the host and the chaperons. Introductions
are made, and the music and dancing begins.
There are not very many bachelors who can entertain in this lavish
fashion; but the simpler entertainments, if they have the correct spirit
of cordial hospitality, go a long way in establishing the desired
relationship between the host and his friends. After all, it is the
little things that count; and little courtesies may fittingly repay
elaborate ceremonials and fashionable functions, if they are offered in
sincere friendliness and warmth.
Always a favorite with the bachelor, the theater party has recently
become his main forte. First in importance, of course, is the selection
of a play, a matter which is largely determined by the kinds of visitors
the host intends to invite. There is nothing more disturbing than to
invite one's friends to a play, and then to feel that they have not
enjoyed it. In selecting something light and amusing, or else the
performance of some celebrated star, the host is comparatively sure of
pleasing most of his guests.
Another important point is to bring together only congenial people for
the theater party. One person out of harmony with the rest will spoil
the whole evening as certainly as a sudden summer shower spoils the most
elaborately planned garden party. It is important to select only those
people whose tastes and temperaments blend.
Invitations are informal. A brief, cordial note handwritten on personal
stationery is preferred, although some men like to use their club
stationery. The name of the play may be mentioned in the invitation. An
immediate response is expected, as the host must be given sufficient time
to choose another guest, if for some reason, the one invited cannot
attend. Men and women may be invited to the theater party, and if there
are married couples in the party, a chaperon is not particularly
When a bachelor invites several men and women friends to dine on his
yacht, or to take a short cruise, it is absolutely bad form to omit the
chaperon. She must be a married woman, and she may join the party with
or without her husband. Another important point regarding yachting
parties; the host must supply a gig or rowboat to carry his guests to and
from the shore, and he must stand on the gangway to greet each one as he
arrives, and assist him to the deck of the yacht.
In giving entertainments, the bachelor must remember at no special social
obligations are expected of him. He need not be lavish in his dinners
and parties, unless he wishes to and can afford it. Simple
entertainments, given the spirit of good fellowship and hospitality, are
always appreciated and tend to substantially strengthen friendships.
MUSICALES AND PRIVATE THEATRICALS
PREPARATIONS FOR THE MUSICALE
The only time that music is not subordinated to other purposes of the
evening's gathering, is at the musicale. Here it is the sole
entertainment of the evening, and it reigns supreme.
In preparing for a musicale, invitations should be engraved and issued at
least ten days in advance of the time chosen for the occasion. In
inviting her guests, the hostess must be sure that she includes only
those among her friends and acquaintances who understand and appreciate
good music, and who enjoy it for itself alone. It is not wise to include
people who are not fond of music (if there really are any such people!)
for they are likely to be bored, and instead of listening quietly to the
selections, talk and fidget and so disturb the other guests who are
anxious to give their undivided attention to the musicians.
The invitations to a musicale require prompt answers. The third person
should be used in both invitations and answers, as the occasion is
strictly a formal one.
The drawing-room, in which the musicale is ordinarily held, should be
bare of all unnecessary furniture save the piano, chairs for the
performers, and seats for the guests. Programs may be printed
sufficiently in advance to distribute at the musicale; they always serve
as appropriate mementos.
THE AFTERNOON MUSICALE
The usual time for the afternoon musicale is from four to six. It is
considerably less formal than a similar affair in the evening, although
still requiring strictly formal third-person etiquette in invitations and
It is usual, in issuing invitations for musicales, whether held in
afternoon or evening, to have the word "Music" engraved in the lower
left-hand corner. If a famous musician is to play his name may appear on
The musical selections include various numbers to suit the tastes of the
hostess, and those of her guests if she happens to know what they are.
Sometimes there are vocal selections in addition to the instrumental
selections. All professional singers and players are paid for their
services, unless they themselves offer them free. It is very bad form
indeed, to invite a singer or player as a guest, and then expect him to
give his services. And yet it is done so often, by hostesses who think
that they are following the dictates of etiquette to the highest letter
of its law! If the performers are friends of the hostess she should
present each one with a gift of some sort as an expression of her
gratitude for their services.
The lighter music should always be played first, retaining the important
numbers for the end. Many hostesses, when they have a famous
professional for the afternoon's entertainment, start the musicale with
singing or playing by unimportant persons, and end it with the
performance of the celebrated professional. It is always pleasing to the
guests--and also the professional himself.
The hostess, in receiving her guests, stands in the drawing-room and
greets each one as he or she arrives. When the music begins, she seats
herself near the door, and whenever a tardy guest arrives, sees that he
is comfortably seated. Incidentally, it is bad form to come late to a
musicale; it is disturbing to the performers and guests alike.
Guests do not remain long after the afternoon musicale. The chairs are
removed from the drawing-room and ices, punch, little cakes and bonbons
are served. As the guests leave, it is customary for them to thank the
hostess for her entertainment.
THE EVENING MUSICALE
Similar in general aspect is the evening musicale and yet there are
several details that are strikingly different.
It may be held any time in the evening. Again the hostess receives in
the drawing-room, and again the selections may be either vocal or
instrumental. But the general appearance of the entire affair is more
ceremonious, more formal. And after the musicale, instead of simple
refreshments, an elaborate supper is usually given.
This supper may consist of jellied bouillon, roast meats, salads, ices,
confections, punches and coffee. If an important singer or player
contributes to the share of the evening's entertainment he is invited to
join the guests. After supper the guests converse for a half hour or so,
CARD PARTIES AT THE MUSICALE
Very often, instead of giving a dinner, a hostess will arrange several
small tables at which four guests can be comfortably seated. She will
serve light refreshments, such as dainty sandwiches, salads, muffins,
bouillon and perhaps ices or coffee. After the light repast, the tables
will be cleared and cards brought out.
If the hostess decides to have cards, after the musicale, she must
mention it in the invitation. The guests may attend only the musicale,
if they wish, and leave when the other guests begin the card game. But
if the musicale is held in the evening, and supper is served, the guest
who remains must also remain for the card games as a matter of courtesy
and politeness. If he does not wish to play he may watch the others and
join in the conversation during the intervals between games.
DUTIES OF GUESTS AT MUSICALES
The one important rule of conduct at the musicale is to maintain absolute
silence during the selections. It is an unforgivable breach of etiquette
to speak, fidget or otherwise disturb the guests while the numbers are
being performed. Encores are permissible, but loud applause is
undeniably vulgar. Silence, interest and attention characterize the
ideal guest at the private concert.
Another duty of the guest is to be prompt. It is very disagreeable to
the performers, and to the hostess, to have guests arrive late and
disturb everyone. However, if one is unavoidably late, to offer profuse
apologies, while the musicians are performing, is to make matters worse
by prolonging the disturbance. Instead the guest should nod, take his or
her seat, and after the musicale, seek out the hostess and offer
apologies for not having been on time.
In taking leave of the hostess, cordial thanks for her entertainment are
in order. Remarks about the playing of the guests are not very good
form, especially if they are in adverse criticism. A word of sincere
praise, however, is never amiss.
DRESS AT THE MUSICALE
Dress at the musicale is essentially what it would be if the occasion
were an elaborate reception, and if it is given in the evening formal
evening dress is worn. In the summer this convention may be set aside in
favor of comfort.
ARRANGING PRIVATE THEATRICALS
Everyone enjoys private theatricals, amateur and otherwise--the hostess,
the guests, and the actors and actresses themselves. It is an ideal means
In arranging a private theatrical, which is almost invariably an amateur
venture, the first important thing to do is to find a play which is
adapted to that talent which is available. It is wise to appoint a
committee to read numerous plays and select for final consideration those
that seem best fitted to the type of actors and actresses available. If
one of the young men is naturally witty and bubbling over with hilarity
and good fun, he must not be given a part that necessitates grave and
solemn behavior. If he, and the other actors, are given parts not suited
to them, the play is doomed to failure before it is even staged.
Unless the performers have had some experience in theatricals it is best
to choose a comedy--for even a Greek tragedy in all its poignant
simplicity may become a farce in the hands of unskillful actors.
Rehearsals are of vital importance. The members of the cast must
rehearse and rehearse and rehearse again until they know their parts
perfectly. They must be punctual and regular in their attendance of the
rehearsals; continually to miss them is to spoil the play and a lack of
preparation on the part of one actor is unfair to the others, for
ultimate success depends on each one of the players.
The performance is usually given in the drawing-room of the host who
issues the invitations, which, by the way, must be sent out two or three
weeks in advance. The host must arrange for stage, lighting effects,
seating facilities and all the other incidental details.
In assigning parts care must be taken, as was pointed out above, in
selecting that character which is most in accord with the player's own
character. This is so important that it cannot be overemphasized. And
when finally the correct part is chosen for him, he must learn his lines
so thoroughly that he will be able, figuratively, to "say them in his
Costumes for the play may be obtained from any theatrical supply house.
They must be of the style prevalent at the date of the play; Colonial
clothes in a Mid-Victorian setting foredoom the play to failure. A
curtain may also be hired from a theatrical supply house, but it is very
simple to adjust one made at home by means of brass rings such as are
used in hanging portieres. There should be a separation in the center so
that the curtain may be drawn back from both sides.
Footlights may consist of a row of small electric lights, or a row of
reflector lamps will impart the desired effect to the improvised stage.
For wings, large Japanese screens will do or they, too, may be hired from
the people who supply the costumes.
To give the effect of lightning, a magnesia torch is most effective.
Thunder is simulated by beating slowly on a bass drum. Hoof beats seem
quite real when produced by beating two cocoanut shells on marble.
The danger of stage fright can be lessened and almost obliterated after a
sufficient number of rehearsals, and with that poise and self-confidence
that comes with true culture, one should be able to stand before the
largest audience without embarrassment or nervousness. It is one of the
rewards of correct training.
As in the musicale, silence is essential. There is nothing more
disconcerting to actors than to notice whispering, giggling or lack of
interest in the audience. Whether the play is worthy of interest or not,
courtesy towards guests and performers demands the appearance of
Guests must answer invitations promptly. In fact, in almost every
detail, attending a theatrical given in the home of a friend requires the
same etiquette as is observed at a fashionable evening musicale. In
departing, the hostess must be cordially thanked for the pleasant
evening, and if the actors are friends of the assemblage and join the
guests after the play, they, too, must be thanked for their share of the
HOST AND HOSTESS
The host and hostess usually receive together at private theatricals.
They stand together at the door of the drawing-room, welcome each guest
and make the necessary introductions. When the curtain is drawn, they
take seats near the back and rise to greet any delinquent guest.
After the play a supper may be served. If the actors are friends they
join in the supper. But sometimes these private theatricals are not
amateurish, but given by professionals, in which case the etiquette is
somewhat different, and the performers may or may not be invited, as the
Engraved cards are issued, and in the lower left-hand corner appears the
name of the play and the leading actor (if he happens to be a celebrity).
The guests are expected to arrive at a definite hour, and lateness in
this case is inexcusable. If the professional players do not offer their
services free, they must receive remuneration for them.
DANCING AS A HEALTHFUL ART
Dancing is an art. More than that, it is a healthful art. In its
graceful movements, cadenced rhythms, and expressive charms are evident
the same beautiful emotions that are so eloquently expressed in music,
sculpture, painting. And it is through these expressions of emotion,
through this silent poetry of the body that dancing becomes a healthful
art, for it imparts to the body--and mind--a poise and strength without
which no one can be quite happy.
It is because the vital importance of dancing on the Mind and body has
been universally recognized, that it has been added to the curriculum of
public schools in almost every country. We find the youngsters revelling
in folk-dances, and entering dancing games with a spirit that gives vigor
to their bodies, balance and grace to their movements.
Consider, for a moment, the irresistible witchery of music, of rhythmic
cadences. We hear the martial note of the drum, and unconsciously our
feet beat time. We hear the first deep chords of the orchestra, and
involuntarily our fingers mark the time of the measure. With the soft,
mellow harmony of triplet melodies we are transported to the solemn
vastness of a mountain beside a, gayly rippling stream. With the deep,
sonorous bursts of triumphant melody, we are transported to the ocean's
edge, where the rumbling of the waves holds us in awed ecstasy. Thoughts
of sorrow, of gladness, of joy, of hope surge through us and cry for
expression. Dancing is nature's way of expressing these emotions.
Then let us dance, for in dancing we find poise and strength and balance.
Let us dance for in dancing we find joy, pleasure, hope. It is the
language of the feelings, and nature meant it for the expression of those
It is only when dancing is confined to hot, crowded rooms where the
atmosphere is unwholesome, that it loses its healthful influence on mind
and body. But where there is plenty of room and fresh air, plenty of
good, soul-inspiring music--we say dance, young and old alike, dance for
the keen pleasure and joy of the dance itself, and for the health that
follows in its wake!
DANCE-GIVING NO LONGER A LUXURY
The day of the strictly formal dance, entailing elaborate suppers,
pretentious decorations and large orchestras has passed. In its place is
the simple, enjoyable, inexpensive dance which is at once the delight of
the guests and the pride of the hostess.
Simplicity is the keynote of the modern ball. A piano and two stringed
instruments usually comprise the entire orchestra. The charm of the home
is no longer spoiled by over-decoration; a vase or two containing the
flowers of the season offer the sole touch of festivity. There are, of
course, numerous personal innovations that may be instituted; but as the
guests are assembled for dancing, space and a good floor and plenty of
fresh air are the primary and paramount requisites.
Light refreshments have taken the place of the large suppers of not so
long ago. Hostesses no longer feel overburdened with a sense of
obligation. The dance has become simple and inexpensive; and because it
is also so thoroughly enjoyable and healthful, it has become a favorite
sport, especially during the cooler months.
THE DEBUT DANCE
Perhaps the most important dance of all is that given in honor of the
/debutante/. No matter how large or formal a dance may be, it is never
called a "ball" in the invitation. The latter is used only in case of a
large public dance or function. The usual "at home" form of invitation
is used, and in the lower left-hand corner the word dancing is printed.
The name of the young debutante may be included if it is so desired,
although it is not essential. But if it is an evening occasion, the name
of both host and hostess must appear on the invitation.
Whether the dance is held in her own home or in a hall hired for the
occasion, the hostess receives and welcomes each guest. She may be
assisted by several of her friends who are well-known in society. Her
daughter stands beside her and is introduced to those of her mother's
guests whom she has not already met.
The debutante has her first partner selected for her by her mother. She
may not dance with one man more than once on the occasion of her
introduction to society. But she is expected to dance every dance,
returning to receive guests during the intervals. Sometimes the young
debutante has several of her chums receiving with her for the first half
hour. She offers her hand to every guest who arrives, and introduces in
turn the friends who are assisting her.
The father of the debutante may receive with his wife, but his duty is
more to see that all the women have partners, and that the chaperons are
taken into supper. He also sees that the gentlemen do their duty as
dancers instead of remaining in the dressing room to smoke and chat. The
hostess does not dance at all, or if she does, it is usually late in the
evening. She remains at her post at the door, welcoming guests and
seeing that all shy men get partners and all the young girls have a good
time. One paramount duty of the hostess is so to arrange her invitations
that there will be very many more men than women; this eliminates the
chance of there being any unhappy wallflowers. Another consideration is
to arrange the chairs in informal little groups instead of close to the
walls in a solemn and dreary line.
The costume ball is conducted very much on the same order as the formal
ball. The invitations are issued two or three weeks before the date set
for the dance, and as for the debut dance, the word ball does not appear
on it. Instead the words "Costumes of the Twelfth Century" or
"Shakespearean Costumes" or whatever may be decided upon are printed in
the lower left-hand corner of usual "at home" cards.
In selecting a fancy costume, one must be careful to choose only what is
/individually/ becoming. It must be in perfect harmony with one's
personality. To assume a character that is in every way opposed to one's
own character is unwise and ungratifying. A sedate, quiet young miss
should not choose a Folly Costume. Nor should a jolly, vivacious young
lady elect to emulate Martha Washington, And furthermore, a character
must not be merely dressed--it must be lived. The successful costume
ball must be realistic;
What is the purpose of the subscription dance? The question is a common
one. And the answer is simple.
A subscription dance is given for the same reason that any other dance is
given--to be surrounded by one's friends, to enjoy music and dancing, and
generally to have a "good time" It is conducted very much on the order of
the formal dance, except that it is semi-public and is usually held in a
public hall. There is no host or hostess, of course; their place is held
by an appointed committee or by the patronesses of the dance. They stand
at the door of the ballroom to welcome guests, and they may either offer
their hands or bow in greeting. It is the duty of the patronesses to
introduce those of the guests who are not already acquainted.
Each subscriber to the dance has the privilege of inviting a certain
number of friends to the function. Or, if the membership decide to give
several periodic dances, he is entitled to invite a certain number of
friends to each one of them. The invitations are issued two weeks ahead
and require a prompt acceptance or regrets.
Sometimes elaborate suppers are served at the subscription dance, the
money for the expenses having been appropriated from the subscription
fees for the entertainment. Or simple refreshments, such as dainty
sandwiches, salads, ices, cakes and punch, may be served at small, round
In departing, it is not considered necessary to take leave of the
patronesses. However, if they are on duty at the door, a cordial word or
two of consideration for their efforts may be extended.
Everything in the ballroom should suggest gayety, light and beauty. The
floor, of course, is the most important detail. A polished hardwood
floor offers the most pleasing surface for dancing. If the wood seems
sticky, paraffine wax adds a smoothness that actually tempts one to
Flowers are always pleasing. Huge ferns may grace unexpected corners and
greens may add a festive note, if the hostess so desires. But there must
not be an obvious attempt at decoration.
Rather nothing at all, than so very much that it borders on the
In fact, the dance is tending more and more to become a simple and
unpretentious function. The elaborate decorations and fashionable
conventions that attended the minuet and quadrille of several decades ago
have given way to a jolly informality which makes the dance so delightful
and popular a way of entertaining.
MUSIC AT THE DANCE
The music, of course, is important; A piano and one or two stringed
instruments are sufficient. The musicians should be hidden behind a
cluster of palms, or placed in a balcony.
Ordinarily the selections are arranged previously by the hostess. She
must also arrange for encores, and should make provision for special
selections which the guests may desire.
The dance program is rarely used now except at college dances, or army
and navy dances. It has lost prestige with the passing of the
old-fashioned ball. But sometimes there are special occasions when the
hostess wishes to have programs, in which case they serve not only as
pretty and convenient adjuncts to the occasion, but as appropriate
Gilt-edged cards attached with a silk cord and provided with a tiny
pencil are pretty when an attractive little sketch or a bit of verse
enlivens the front cover. Each dance is entered on the program--and many
a delightful memory is kept alive by glancing at these names days after
the dance was held. These programs may be filled beforehand or they may
be filled at the dance.
At the dinner dance, the hostess issues two sets of invitations, one for
those whom she wishes to invite for dinner and dance both, and one for
those whom she wishes to invite to the dance only. For the former the
ordinary dinner invitation may be issued, with the words "Dancing at
Nine" added in the left-hand corner. For the latter, the ordinary "at
home" invitation with the same words "Dancing at Nine" added also in the
left-hand corner is correct form.
Often the hostess has a buffet supper instead of a dinner. All the
guests partake of this refreshment. On a long table, decorated with
flowers, are salads, sandwiches, ices, jellies and fruits which may be
partaken of throughout the entire evening. Sometimes hot bouillon is
also served, and very often a midnight supper is given at which hot
courses are in order.
If a dance is scheduled to be held in the ballroom of a hotel, the guests
who are invited to dinner may be served in the dining-room of that
hotel. The small tables are usually decorated with lamps and flowers for
the occasion, and the dinner may be ordered by the hostess several days
Whether the dance be large or small, dressing rooms, or coat rooms, as
they are sometimes called, are essential for the convenience of the
guests. There must be one for the gentlemen and one for the ladies, each
It is usual to have a maid servant in attendance in the dressing room set
apart for the ladies. She helps them relieve themselves of their wraps
when they arrive, and to don them again when they are ready to depart. A
dressing-table, completely furnished with hand-mirror, powder, perfume
and a small lamp, should be provided. A full-size mirror is always
appreciated. Sometimes, when a great number of guests are expected, a
checking system is devised to simplify matters and aid the maid in
identifying the wraps.
The men's dressing room may be provided with a smoking table supplied
with all the necessary requisites for smoking, matches, ash-trays,
cigar-cutters, etc. Here also a servant is usually on hand to offer the
gentleman his service wherever it is needed.
There is a lesser formality, a greater gayety in the ballroom of to-day.
The dance-card and program are no longer enjoying unrivaled vogue as they
did when our grandmothers' danced the waltz and cotillon. The pauses
between dances are shorter. Something of the old dignity is gone, but in
its place is a new romance that is perhaps more gratifying. It is not a
romance of the Mid-Victorian period, or a romance that carries with it
the breath of mystery. It is a strangely companionable and levelheaded
romance which pervades the ballroom and makes everyone, young and old,
man and woman, want to get out on the floor and dance to the tune of the
But the ballroom of good society, must retain its dignity even while it
indulges in the new "romance of the dance." It must observe certain
little rules of good conduct without which it loses all the grace and
charm which are the pride and inspiration of the dancing couples. There
is, for instance, the etiquette of asking a lady to dance, and accepting
the invitation in a manner graciously befitting the well-bred young lady
of the twentieth century.
WHEN THE LADY IS ASKED TO DANCE
Before asking anyone else to dance, the gentleman must request the first
dance of the lady he escorted to the ball, Then he takes care that she
has a partner for each dance, and that she is never left a wallflower
while he dances with some other lady.
At the conclusion of the dance, the gentleman thanks the lady for the
dance and goes off to find his nest partner. The lady does not seek her
partner for the next dance, if she has promised it to anyone, but waits
until he comes to claim her. A man should never leave a woman standing
alone on the floor.
A modern system of "cutting in" seems to be enjoying a vogue among our
young people. While a dance is in progress, a young man may "cut in" and
ask the lady to finish the dance with him. If the dance has not been very
long in progress, and the young lady wishes to continue it, she may nod
and say, "The next time we pass here" The dance continues around the
room, and when the couple reach the same place again, the lady leaves her
partner and finishes the dance with the young man who has "cut in."
Perhaps this custom of "cutting in" carries with it the merest suggestion
of discourtesy, but when we consider the informal gayety of the ballroom,
the keen and wholehearted love of dancing, we can understand why the
privilege is extended. Like many another privilege, it becomes
distasteful when it is abused.
It is not good form for a couple to dance together so many times as to
make themselves conspicuous.
Men should not neglect their duty as dancers because they prefer to smoke
or simply to act as spectators.
Dancing has been revolutionized since the day when the German waltz was
first introduced to polite society. And it is safe to say that some of
our austere granddames would feel righteously indignant if they were
suddenly brought back to the ballroom and forced to witness some of the
modern dance innovations!
There seems to be an attempt, on the part of the younger generation
(although the older generation is not so very far behind!) to achieve
absolute freedom of movement, to go through the dance with a certain
unrestrained impulsiveness unknown to the minuet or graceful quadrille.
These newer dances and dancing interpretations are charming and
entertaining; and yet there is the possibility of their becoming vulgar
if proper dancing positions are not taken. The position is especially
important in the latest dances.
In guiding a lady across the polished floor to the tune of a simple waltz
or a gay fox-trot, the gentleman encircles her waist half way with his
right arm, laying the palm of his hand lightly just above the waist line.
With his left hand, he holds her right at arm's length in the position
most comfortable for both of them, taking special care not to hold it in
an awkward or ungainly position. His face is always turned slightly to
the left, while hers usually faces front or slightly to the right. The
girl should place her left arm on her partner's right arm. She must
follow him and not try to lead the dance herself.
When the dance requires certain swaying movements, as almost all modern
dances do, the lady inclines her body in harmony with that of her
partner, and if the proper care is taken to retain one's poise and
dignity, not even a most exacting chaperon can find fault with the new
WHEN THE GUEST DOES NOT DANCE
Always at a dance, formal or informal, there are guests who do not dance.
Usually they are men, for there is rarely a woman who does not know the
steps of the latest dances--that is, if she ever does accept invitations
at all. But "the guest who does not dance" is one of the unfortunate
things the hostess has to put up with at every one of her dances.
And there is rarely ever an excuse for it. Every man who mingles in
society at all, who enjoys the company of brilliant women and attractive
young ladies, who accepts the invitations of hostesses, is failing in his
duty when he offers as an excuse the fact that he doesn't know how to
dance for there are sufficient schools of dancing in every city and town
where the latest steps can be learned quickly.
If for any reason, a gentleman does not know how to dance, and does not
want to learn, he may make up for it by entertaining the chaperons while
their charges are dancing--conversing with them, walking about with them
and escorting them to the refreshment table, and altogether show by his
kind attentiveness that he realizes his deficiency and wishes to make up
for it. To lounge in the dressing-room, smoking and chatting with other
gentlemen is both unfair to the hostess and essentially rude in the
matter of ballroom etiquette. The true gentleman would rather decline an
invitation than be unfair to his hostess and her guests in this respect.
Very often public dances are given in honor of some special occasion or a
celebrated guest. They are very much like private dances, except that a
specially appointed committee fulfills the position and duties of the
hostess. At most public balls, the committee is composed of men and
women who wear badges to indicate their position, and who stand at the
door to receive and welcome each guest. These men and women do not dance
the first dance, but wait until later in the evening when they are quite
sure that all the guests have arrived; and then they are always back at
their duty during the intervals between dances.
Guests arriving at a public dance greet the patronesses with a smile of
welcome and a word or two, but rarely offer their hands to be shaken
unless the ladies serving as patronesses take the initiative. They may
stay for one or two dances, or throughout the whole evening, as they
prefer; and when departing, it is not necessary to seek out the
patronesses and bid them good-by.
Engraved invitations are usually issued three weeks before the date set
for the ball. On these cards the names of the patronesses are also
engraved. If the entrance to the ball is by purchased ticket, such as is
always the case when the ball is given for some charity, the invitations
must be preserved and shown at the entrance.
Sometimes a supper is included in the arrangement of the public ball, and
in such case a caterer is engaged to attend to all details, including
servants. A buffet supper is always the most pleasing and satisfactory
as the guests may partake of the foods when they desire and there is no
confusion or interruption to the dance. Hot bouillon, various meats,
salads, cakes, ices, fruits and confections are an ideal menu. Coffee or
punch is sometimes added.
When a public ball is given in honor of some special person, that person
must be met on his arrival and immediately introduced to the women on the
reception committee and escorted to the seat reserved for him. He must
be attended throughout the evening, introduced to everyone he does not
know, and all his wants carefully taken care of. When he departs, he
must be escorted to his carriage, and if he is a celebrated personage
thanked for his presence--although truly cultured gentlemen prefer not to
have this honor paid them.
A public ball is either a tremendous success or a miserable failure.
There is no in-between. And the success or failure rests solely on the
good judgment and influence of the ladies and gentlemen of the
committees, including, of course, those who receive. To mingle freely
among the guests, to join in the conversation, to introduce guests to
each other and find partners for the "wallflowers" all these little
services tend to arouse a spirit of friendliness and harmony that cannot
but result in an evening that will be long remembered in the minds of
A PLEA FOR DANCING
Lately there has been a great deal of unfavorable criticism directed
against the modern dances. There have been newspaper articles condemning
the "latest dance fads" as immoral and degrading. There have been
speeches and lectures against "shaking and twisting of the body into
weird, outlandish contortions." There have been vigorous crusades
against dance halls. And all because a few ill-bred, fun-loving,
carefree young people wrongly interpreted the new dances in their own way
and gave to the steps the vulgar abandon appropriate only to the cheap
vaudeville stage or the low dance hall.
Dancing, even the shoulder-shaking, oscillating dancing of to-day, is
really not intended to be vulgar or immoral at all, despite the crusades
of the anti-immorality dancing committees! What is dancing, after all, if
not the expression of one's ideals and emotions? It is only the man or
woman with a vulgar mind, with base ideals, who will give a vulgar
interpretation to a dance of any kind. But the essentially fine girl,
the really well-bred man, the people who, by their poise and dignity have
earned for America the envied title of "Republic of the
Aristocrats"--they dance these latest creations for the sheer joy of the
dance itself, reveling in its newness, enjoying the novelty of its
"different" steps, seeing nothing in its slow undulations or brisk little
steps, but art--a "jazzy" art, to be sure, but still the beautiful art of
And so we plead--let the younger generation enjoy its giddy waltzes and
brisk-paced fox-trots and fancy new dances just as grandmother, when she
was young, was allowed to enjoy the minuet and the slow waltz. They are
different, yes, and rather hard to accept after the dignified dances of
not so long ago. But they are picturesque, to say the least, and
artistic. The gracefully-swaying bodies, keeping step in perfect
harmony to the tunes of the newer symphony orchestras, are delightful to
watch; and in good society, young men and women can always be trusted to
deport themselves with utter grace and poise.
The minuet was decidedly graceful. The old German waltz with its dreamy,
haunting melody was beautiful as it was enjoyable. But they have been
relegated into the days of hoop skirts and powdered wigs. To-day the
"jazzy" dances are in vogue, and society in its lowest and highest
circles is finding intense pleasure in the whirling, swirling dances
decreed by fashion as her favorites. Why complain? Perhaps in another
year or two, these giddy-paced dances will be "out of style" and in their
stead will be solemn, slow dances more graceful and stately than even the
minuet of yore.
THE CHARM OF DRESS IN DANCING
Immediately after the Reign of Terror, France was plunged into a reckless
round of unrestrained gayety that can come only from love of life and
youth and laughter long pent-up. It was as though an avalanche of joy
had been released; it was in reality the reaction from the terrors and
nightmares of those two years of horror. The people were free, free to
do as they pleased without the fear of the guillotine ever present; and
all France went mad with rejoicing.
It was then that dancing came into its own. Almost overnight huge dance
halls sprang up. The homes of wealthy aristocrats who had been
sacrificed to the monster guillotine, were converted into places for
dancing. Every available inch of space was utilized for the dance. And
the more these freed people danced, the more their spirits soared with
the joy of life and living, until they found in the dance itself the
interpretation of freedom and all that it means.
A biographer who was an eye-witness of this madcap Paris, wrote in detail
about the dance and the dress of these people. He told how they dressed
in the brightest clothes they could obtain, for maddened with happiness
as they were, they instinctively felt that bright clothes would enliven
their spirits. And they did!
"The room was a mass of swirling, twirling figures," the biographer
writes, "men, women and children in weird, vivid clothes. It seemed
natural that they should be dancing so wildly in their wild costumes; in
their sabots and aprons of two months ago they would not have been able
to take one step."
It is, then, the spirit of clothes that imparts to one the spirit of the
dance. We have mentioned these facts about the Reign of Terror to show
what effect clothes do have on the spirit, and incidentally to show what
the ballroom owes to dress. For it is undoubtedly the gayly-colored
dance frock of the miss of the twentieth century, and the strikingly
immaculate dance suit of her partner that gives to the ballroom to-day
much of its splendid brilliance.
AT THE AFTERNOON DANCE
There can be no comparison between the mad dance of freed France and the
simple, graceful dance of to-day. Yet we can see the effect of clothes
in relation to both.
It is not often that dances are held in the afternoon, but when the
occasion does arise, dress is just as gay and colorful as one can wear
without being gaudy. The decorous effect of these bright-colored
costumes is what brings the "giddy kaleidoscopic whirl of colors and
costumes, modes and manners" that the historian speaks of when he
mentions the ballroom.
For the afternoon dance, we would suggest that the very young person
choose the fluffiest and most becoming style which fashion permits. Trim
it gaily, but above all, make it youthful--for youth and dancing are
The older woman will want a gown that is more suited to her years. It
may be of taffeta, Canton crepe or crepe-de-chine; but satin is one of
the materials that is preferred for more formal occasions than the
afternoon dance. The colors may be somber, to match one's tastes, but
the trimming should have a note of gayety.
Décolleté is never worn at the afternoon dance. Short sleeves may be
worn if Fashion favors them at the time, and the neck of the gown is also
cut on the lines that agree with the prevalent mode. But it is extremely
bad taste, even for a very celebrated guest of honor, to attend the
afternoon dance in a sleeveless, décolleté gown.
A late custom seems to favor the wearing of satin slippers to match the
gown. It is not by any means bad taste, but patent leather or kid pumps
are preferred for the afternoon, reserving the more elaborate satin pumps
for evening wear. Long white silk or kid gloves and a light-colored
afternoon wrap complete the correct dress for the afternoon dance. The
hat, of course, depends on Fashion's whim at the moment.
GENTLEMEN AT THE DANCE
In summer, the gentleman may wear a complete suit of gray with a white
duck waistcoat and light linen to the afternoon dance, completing his
costume with black patent leather shoes or oxford ties, light gray
gloves, and straw hat with black and white band. But whether it be for
summer or winter, the dark suit is always better taste.
It may be of serge, twillet or homespun, preference being given always to
the conventional navy blue serge. Double-Breasted models are appropriate
for the young man; single-breasted for the older. Light linen and bright
ties are in full accordance with the gay colors worn by the women at the
dance. The coat may be the ordinary unlined, straight hanging overcoat
of thin material in a light color, or it may be an attractive full belted
raglan coat of tan or brown fleece. In either case it is worn with the
conventional afternoon hat of the season.
DRESS FOR THE BALL
When the dance is held in the evening, it often assumes an air of
It is at the ball that such important events as introducing one's
daughter to society or celebrating the graduation of one's son from
college, takes place.
Of course, one wears one's most important jewels to the ball, and
indulges in a headdress that is a trifle more elaborate than usual. The
event is a brilliant one, and if gaudiness and ostentation are
conscientiously avoided, one may dress as elaborately as one pleases.
This does not mean, however, that the woman whose purse permits only one
evening gown, need feel ill at ease or self-conscious at the ball, for
simplicity has a delightful attractiveness all its own, and if the gown
is well-made of excellent materials, and in a style and color that is
becoming, one will be just as effectively dressed as the much-bejeweled
DRESS OF THE DEBUTANTE
A gown is chosen with much premeditated consideration for so momentous an
occasion as being ushered into society. The young lady does well to seek
the advice of her friends who are already in society, and of her modiste
who knows by long experience just what is correct and becoming. But
perhaps we can give some advice here that will be helpful.
A delicately tinted gown, in pastel shades, or one that is pure white is
preferred for the happy debutante. Tulle, chiffon, net and silk
georgette are the most popular materials. The style should be youthful
and simple, preferably bordering on the bouffant lines rather than on
those that are more severely slender. The neck may be cut square, round
or heart-shaped, and elbow-length sleeves or full-length lace sleeves are
preferred. The sleeveless' gown is rarely worn by the young debutante.
The debutante who wears many jewels displays poor taste. Just a string
of softly glowing pearls, or one small diamond brooch, is sufficient.
Her hair should be arranged simply in a French coil or youthful coiffure,
and should be wholly without ornamentation. Simplicity, in fact, is one
of the charms of youth, and the wise young person does not sacrifice it
to over-elaboration, even on the day of her debut.
WRAPS AT THE BALL
The woman wears her most elaborate evening wrap to the ball. Soft
materials in light shades are suggested, with trimmings of fur for the
winter months. A wrap of old blue or old rose velvet with a collar of
white fog is becoming and attractive when it is within one's means. But
the simple wrap of cloth, untrimmed, is certainly better taste for the
woman whose means are limited. However, discrimination should be shown in
the selection of lines and colors. A simple wrap, well-cut, and of fine
material in a becoming shade, is as appropriate and effective as a wrap
completely of fur. For the woman who must dress economically a dark
loose coat of black satin is serviceable for many occasions.
Hats are never worn to the ball. A shawl or scarf of fine lace may be
thrown over the hair and shoulders. Or a smaller shawl may be tied
merely around the head. Satin pumps are worn, usually with buckle
trimmings; and long gloves of white silk or kid, or in a color to match
the gown, complete the outfit.
BALL DRESS FOR MEN
Nothing less strictly formal than the complete full dress suit is worn by
the gentleman at the evening ball. His costume strikes a somber, yet
Whether it be summer or winter, the gentleman wears the black full dress
coat, lapels satin-faced if he so desires, and trousers to match. Full
rolled waistcoat, small bow-tie and stiff linen are all immaculately
white. Patent leather pumps and black silk socks complete the outfit.
In summer, the gentleman wears over his full dress suit a light unlined
coat, preferably black in color. If the lapels of the suit are
satin-faced, the coat lapels may correspond. White kid gloves are worn,
and a conventional silk hat. In winter, the coat may be a heavy,
dark-colored raglan, although the Chesterfield overcoat more suits his
dignified dress. With it he wears white kid gloves and a high silk hat
or felt Alpine as he prefers.
FOR THE SIMPLE COUNTRY DANCE
There can be nothing more picturesque and delightful than some of the
pretty little social dances held in the smaller towns. Sometimes they are
held in the afternoon; more often in the evening, but always they are a
source of keen enjoyment both to the participants and to those who "look
We are going to tell you about a dance held recently in the home of a
social leader in a typical small town. Everyone of any consequence
whatever attended, and the occasion proved one worthy of remembrance in
the social annals of the town. There were perhaps one hundred and fifty
women and one hundred men. Three rooms in the hostess' home were thrown
open into one huge ballroom. The dancing began at eight o'clock in the
evening--rather early for the city, but unusually late for this country
To a visitor from so gay a metropolis as New York, the simplicity of the
women's dress was a pleasing change. They were in evening dress, yes,
but a strangely more conservative evening dress than that described
previously for the formal ball. There were no sleeveless gowns, no
elaborate decolletes. Taffetas, chiffons and silk brocades were
developed simply into gowns of dignified charm. One did not notice
individual gowns, for no one woman was dressed more elaborately than
another. This is what everyone should strive for simplicity with charm
and a complete absence of all conspicuousness.
Fashion has been condemned. Women have been ridiculed for their "extreme
tastes." As a matter of fact, civilization owes dress a great debt, and
women have an inherent good taste. And both these facts are forcibly
proved at the country dance, where simplicity and harmony of color
combine to give an effect that is wholly delightful and charming.
The lesson we might take from this is that simplicity in dress has more
beauty and effect than elaborate "creations."
GAMES AND SPORT
WHY THE WORLD PLAYS
All the world loves to play. In childhood, it is the very language of
life. In youth, it vies with the sterner business of young manhood or
womanhood. When we are older and the days of childhood are but a fading
memory, we still have some "hobby" that offers recreation from our
business and social duties. It may be golf or tennis or billiards; but it
is play--and it is a relaxation.
It is a fundamental law of nature that we shall play in proportion to the
amount of work we do. The inevitable "tired business man" finds
incentive in the thought of a brisk game of golf after closing hours.
The busy hostess looks forward to the afternoon that she will be able to
devote exclusively to tennis. The man or woman who does not "play" is
missing one of the keenest pleasures of life.
But there is an etiquette of sport and games, just as there is an
etiquette of the ballroom and dinner table. One must know how to conduct
oneself on the golf links and at the chess table, just as one must know
how to conduct oneself at dinner or at the opera. And in one's play, one
must remember that touching little fable of the frogs who were stoned by
boys, in which the poor little creatures cried, "What is play to you is
death to us." Be kind, unselfish and fair. Do not sacrifice, in the
exciting joyousness of the game, the little courtesies of social life.
Remember Burns' pretty bit of verse--we cannot resist the temptation of
printing it here:
"Pleasures are like poppies spread, You seize the flower, its bloom
is shed; Or, like the snowfall on the river, A moment white, then
Nothing so quickly betrays a person as unfairness in games. It hardly
seems necessary to mention it, to caution anyone against it. Yet so many
people are prone to believe that the courtesies we observe in social
life, may be entirely forgotten in the world of sport and pleasure--and
that with them, we may forget our scruples. "Cheating" is a harsh word
and we do not want to use it. But what other word can be used to
describe unfairness, to describe selfish discourtesies?
"Fair play is a jewel." This proverb has been handed down to us among
other old sayings of the Danish, and Denmark loves its games and sports
as few other countries do. It was here that the game of Bridge first had
its inception. It was here that the game of "Boston" first won
prominence. Many of the games and sports practiced in America to-day had
their origin in Denmark. And it was that country that gave to us the
golden proverb, "Fair play is a jewel."
We could fill a complete volume on the ethics of sport, but it is not
necessary to elaborate on the subject in a book of etiquette. When you
are on the tennis courts or at the billiard tables remember only to
observe the same good manners and courtesies that characterize your
social life--and you will play fair.
Bridge and chess have long been the boon of puzzled hostesses. These
indoor games offer a wealth of interest and enjoyment to visiting guests,
and in social circles they are frequently resorted to, to make an
afternoon or evening pass pleasantly.
Every woman who ever invites people to her home should know the etiquette
of indoor games. It is also necessary that she herself know how to play
the games as it will be expected that she join her guests. At a recent
silver wedding the host and hostess evolved the novel idea of spending
the evening playing bridge with the guests and offering silver prizes to
the winners. Every one enjoyed the evening, and it saved the hostess the
trouble of worrying about providing satisfactory entertainment.
Some women who enjoy indoor games form clubs for the purpose of devoting
one or more afternoons or evenings a week to the favored game. There are
numerous chess and bridge clubs that meet in private homes or in
club-rooms rented for the purpose. The usual method is to meet at the
home of one of the members, rotating each week so that each member has
her turn at being hostess.
There is something romantic, something strangely fanciful in the old game
of chess. Its origin is forgotten in a dim past--a past around which is
woven historical tales of kings and queens, interesting anecdotes of
ancient sports and pleasures. There is perhaps no indoor game as old and
as beloved. [To inspire interest in certain games, and to give renewed
zest to those who have already made one of these games a hobby, it was
considered worth-while to give in these chapters the interesting facts
regarding the origin of some of our popular modern games. We are
indebted to Paul Mouckton, whose splendid book, "Pastimes is Times Past"
ha helped us to make this possible.]
Chess is also one of the most universal of games. In slightly altered
form, it is played in almost every country. Games resembling chess are
found even in uncivilized countries. To know the rudiments of the game,
is to be able to enter into at least one sport when traveling in other
We trace the origin of chess to the ancient Sanscrit Indians. At that
time it was known as "chatauranga." From this word, the word "shatrang"
was evolved, developing slowly into our modern word "chess." It was in
the sixteenth century that the surface of the chess-board was chequered
black and white. Just as the capture of a king by enemies meant the
terminating of his rule of the kingdom in those days, the capture of the
"king" on the chess-board to-day terminates the game.
It is interesting to note that the different "pieces" used in the game of
chess all have their origin in ancient history. The game is one of the
most interesting in existence, and the man or woman who does not already
know how to play it, should learn how as soon as possible. There are
numerous authorities who are only too glad to teach it.
The hostess who plans a chess-party for her guests should arrange a
sufficient number of small tables in the drawing-or reception-room.
Usually coffee and wafers are served as refreshment in the afternoon; but
if the party is held in the evening, it usually terminates in a cold
Bridge is one of our most popular card-games--particularly so among
women. It is also one of the most interesting indoor games ever
invented, and therefore usually adopted by the hostess who wishes to
entertain her guests for the afternoon or evening.
England greeted the origin of bridge, about fifty years ago, with great
delight. The game speedily became one of the most popular ones in social
circles. Perhaps if we exclude whist, bridge has taken a greater hold
upon the popular imagination than any other card-game ever invented.
The origin of the word "bridge" itself is buried in the mists of
uncertainty. Some say that it comes from the Tartar word "birintch"
which means "town-crier." Others contend that it comes from the Russian
word "biritch" meaning Russian whist. But whatever its origin, the word
means a game of such utter interest and delight, that it should be well
understood and frequently indulged in by hostesses and their guests.
There are two kinds of bridge; one, known as Auction Bridge is for three
players. Ordinary bridge is for four players. In the former game, one
depends largely upon luck. But skill is a very necessary requisite to
the one who wishes to play and win in ordinary bridge. Writers on games
declare that Auction Bridge is more of a "gambling" game than ordinary
bridge. But hostesses who do not favor "gambling" in any form, had
better choose chess as their popular game, for it is the only game from
which the element of chance is entirely absent. But bridge, perhaps by
virtue of its very element of chance, is to-day one of the most popular
The hostess who invites friends to a bridge-party should provide
sufficient card tables for the purpose. If the party consists entirely
of ladies, it is usually held in the afternoon and light refreshments are
served. If men join the party it is usually held in the evening and
terminates in a midnight supper.
BILLIARDS AND CROQUET
There seems to be some very intimate connection between croquet and
billiards. But while croquet is a very old game and now rapidly lapsing
into disuse, billiards is a comparatively new one enjoying very wide
popularity. The fact that small billiard tables are being made to fit
conveniently into the drawing-room at home, proves that the modern host
and hostess recognize the popularity of the game. Croquet, we find from
studying the history of games, was played in the thirteenth century.
Billiards, which we speak of as being "comparatively new," was known in
the seventeenth century, for does not Shakespeare have Cleopatra say in
Antony's temporary absence:
"Let us to billiards: Come, Charmian."
Billiards is a game that lends itself to betting. While this may be
permissible in a public billiard place, it is not good form in a private
home where the hostess invites a few friends to enjoy the game with her.
She should not invite many people unless she has several tables to place
at their disposal.
Croquet is played on the lawn. Hidden in the forgotten origin of
billiards, there must be some connection between the green lawn of
croquet and the green baize cloth of the billiard table. Croquet is
played with mallets and balls, very much on the same order as the game of
The game of croquet is derived from the same source as hockey. The old
French word "hoquet," meaning a "crooked stick" has very much the same
meaning as the word "croquet." Both are excellent outdoor sports that
guests at a house party will find enjoyable and interesting.
One hostess we know, who is a billiard enthusiast, has six tables in her
"billiard room," as she calls it, where she entertains several guests
almost every afternoon. On the wall is a large picture showing two
stately old gentlemen playing a game of billiards, and beneath it in bold
handlettering, the following bit of verse from Cotton's book, "The
Billiards from Spain at first derived its name, Both an ingenious and
a cleanly game. One gamester leads (the table green as grass) And
each like warriors, strive to gain the Pass.
At garden parties, house parties, and lawn parties, there is always the
need for interesting, amusing games that will afford entertainment for
the guests. The hostess who knows the various games that are popular
among the younger and older sets, will be able to spend many jolly,
pleasant mornings and afternoons with her guests.
Not only for the hostess and her guest, but for every man or woman who
loves games and sports, who enjoys being outdoors, there are sports that
are as enjoyable as they are health-building. There can be nothing more
delightful, on a Saturday afternoon, than to go out on the links and
enjoy a good game of golf. And there can be nothing more invigorating to
the tired hostess than a brisk game of lawn tennis on a sunny afternoon.
To the splendid outdoor games of America, our young women owe their
lithe, graceful bodies and their glowing good health; and our young men
owe their well-knit forms and muscular strength. No appeal can be too
strong in encouraging people to indulge more freely in outdoor
sports--and especially people who spend a great deal of their time in
businesses that confine them to offices.
Tennis is always popular and always interesting.
Those who love the game will enjoy a bit of the history of its origin and
of its development in recent years. It is not a new game. The exact
date of its origin is not known, and perhaps never will be, but we do
know that it was imported into England from France at a very early date.
Originally it was called "palmplay" because the palm was used to cast the
ball to the other side. And instead of the net, a mud-wall was used to
separate the two sides.
The game of tennis flourished in the time of Joan of Arc, for we find her
namesake, a certain Jean Margot, born in 1421, called the "amazon of
medieval tennis" by Paul Mouckton in his book, "Pastimes in Times Past."
He tells us also that she could play ball better than any man in France.
In the fifteenth century, tennis fell into disrepute because of the large
amount of betting. But gradually, with the passing of the years and the
development of the tennis courts, it once more came into its own, and
soon we find that it had become so popular and fashionable that it
threatened to eclipse even cricket, England's most popular outdoor game.
Then once again it lapses into neglect, not to return to the lawns and
courts again until 1874. Since that year, Lawn Tennis has steadily risen
to the ranks of the most favored social game in America and England. In
the past few years changes and improvements have been made and as the
game now stands it is truly the "king of games"-as Major Wingfield
described it more than two decades ago.
The hostess who invites friends to a tennis game should be sure that her
courts are in good condition. It is her duty to supply the net, balls and
racquets, although some enthusiasts prefer using their own racquets.
Whether or not the hostess joins in the games herself, depends entirely
upon her personal preference, and upon convenience. Usually, however, she
is expected to play at least one set.
The fact that Pepys, in his well-known diary, tells us that he saw the
Duke of York playing golf (known then as Paille-Maille) is sufficient
evidence of the antiquity of the game. It is of Scotch origin, being
played in the Lowlands as early as 1300. The very words "caddie," "links"
and "tee" are Scotch. "Caddie" is another word for cad, but the meaning
of that word has changed considerably with the passing of the centuries.
"Link" means "a bend by the river bank,"' but literally means a "ridge of
land." "Tee" means a "mark on the ground."
It seems that golfing has some strange charm from which there is no
escaping once one has experienced it. To play golf and to learn its
fascination, is to love it always and be unable to forsake it. James I
and Prince Henry his son, were ardent golfers. Charles I was also a lover
of golf, and it is related that the news of the Irish Rebellion in 1642
was brought to him while he was playing at the Links at Leith. Sir John
Foulis, Earl John of Montrose, Duncan Forbes and the Duke of Hamilton are
other notables of history, known to have been addicted to the game.
In 1754 a Golf Club was founded in England, pledging themselves to
compete each year for a silver cup. In 1863 another Royal Golf Club was
founded of which the Prince of Wales was elected Captain. The minutes and
records of this club reveal many interesting, and ofttimes amusing,
customs that presaged the very customs practiced by golf-lovers to-day.
One reason why golf is so popular is that it is a sport in which old and
young can join on an equal footing. In this manner it is unlike hockey or
other similar games, where strength and training are essential. But one
must not have the impression that golf can be played once or twice, and
then known and understood thoroughly. It is the kind of game that must be
played enthusiastically and constantly; and gradually one becomes
conscious of a fascination that can hardly be found in any other game or
There is a distinct etiquette of the links that should be known by the
hostess who plans a golfing party, and also by everyone who plays the
game. Courtesy is one of the unwritten laws of the links. It is
considered an unpardonable sin to speak or move when watching another
player make a drive. It is also unpardonable to attempt to play through
the game of persons who are ahead on the links.
SOME IMPORTANT RULES ABOUT GOLF
In teeing-off, one should be quite sure that one's immediate predecessors
from the tee are at least two shots in advance. Otherwise there is danger
of injuring other players; and there is also the confusion of driving
balls among those of near-by players. If, however, a ball is driven into
the space of greensward where another player is concentrating upon his
ball an apology should be made.
Sometimes skillful and rapid players find their progress over the links
retarded by players who are slow and inaccurate. These slow players may
be new at the game, or they may prefer to play slowly. At any rate, it
is good form for the rapid players to request that they be permitted to
play through ahead of the others; or it is still better for the slow
players themselves, when they see that they are retarding others, to
volunteer stepping aside while the others play through. A courtesy of
this kind requires cordial thanks.
Putting is a delicate and difficult operation upon which the entire
success of the game rests. Spectators must keep this in mind when they
are on the links, and they must not stand so close to the player that
they will interfere with his concentration. It is extremely bad form to
talk, whisper or shuffle about while a player is putting, and those who
do so are revealing their lack of courtesy and of the knowledge of the
correct etiquette of sport.
We feel that a word about football is necessary, not only because it is
one of the most popular American sports, but because men and women alike
enjoy watching the game. At the Yale Bowl, where some of the most
spectacular football games are played--and won--thousands of men and
women from all over the United States gather every year.
Like all other ball games, football is based on many other games that had
their origin in medieval times. It was only after the game of kicking
the ball had been introduced in England, that it became a distinct sport
known as football. Since then it has flourished and developed, until
to-day it is as popular as tennis, hockey, baseball and golf.
Football is a strenuous game. In England it was confined largely to boys
and young men. Even in America elderly men never play the game, but that
is no reason why they cannot watch and enjoy it.
There can be no etiquette prescribed for the players in a football game
beyond that incorporated in the rules of the game and in the general laws
of good sportsmanship. But the people who are watching the game must
observe a certain good conduct, if they wish to be considered entirely
cultured. For instance, even though the game becomes very exciting, it
is bad form to stand up on the seats and shout words of encouragement to
the players. Yet how many, who claim to be entirely well-bred, do this
Of course it is permissible to cheer; but it must be remembered that
there are correct and incorrect ways of cheering. Noise is noise even in
the grandstand, and your loud cheering is very likely to annoy the people
around you. A brief hand-clapping is sufficient applause for a good play
or even for a victory. It is not necessary to be boisterous. And this
holds true of the game of baseball also, when loud cheering serves only
to create confusion and disorder.
The well-mannered person is known by his or her calm conduct and gentle
manners whether it be in the ballroom or at the football game.
With automobiling enjoying its present universal popularity, it is
necessary to add a few paragraphs here regarding the correct automobile
etiquette. For there is an etiquette of driving, and a very definite
etiquette that must be followed by all who wish to be well-bred.
First there are the rules by which the driver of the car must be
governed. In busy city streets, where there are no traffic regulations
to govern the reckless driver, one should drive slowly and cautiously.
It is time enough to drive speedily when the open roads of the country
are reached. But it is inconsiderate and selfish to speed one's car
along streets where children are likely to dash unexpectedly in front of