Manners for Men
Mrs Humphry (1898)
Imagine giving a modern day young man a handbook telling him how to behave at a dinner party. Or perhaps a manual on the proper ways to court and ultimately marry a young woman. One can only imagine his reaction.
Many guides were published in the 19th century that were useful for a gentleman in his everyday life. Some focused on general advice for young men on such topics as their duties and conduct in various social and work scenarios. Others provided education on recreational activities such as hunting, horse riding, football and croquet.
Many of the etiquette guides and manuals for gentlemen back in the day revolved around the fairer sex. From the customs of courtship to humorous how-to guides to help pick up women, there certainly was no shortage on this subject.
Although some customs employed in the 19th century are no longer relevant, and are even ridiculous today, there are also many that survived into contemporary custom. If you're looking to brush up on your manners and etiquette, any one of the books below will help to make you an outstanding member of society Ė or at least give you a good laugh.
See our selection of Ladies Handbooks.
Etiquette for Men
by G.R.M. Devereuxsold
A guide including the art of conversation, attending a dance, table etiquette and letter writing.
How to Watch Football
by Lou Littlesold
Help would-be football fans understand the game as they watch it.
The Perfect Gentleman: A guide to Social Aspirants
by Graham Harrysold
A guide to social aspirants.
Manners Makyth Man
by Edward John Hardy
An anthology illustrating English manners and customs.
Etiquette for Gentlemen - A Guide to the Observances of Good Society
A guide to the observances of good society.
Gentlemen Behave: Charles Hanson Towne's Book of Etiquette for Men
Charles Hanson Towne
An etiquette book for gentlemen from an author who enjoyed a long career as a poet, author and editor.
Advice to Young Men
Advice to young men on their duties and conduct in life.
The Young Man's Friend
Daniel C. Eddy
Containing admonitions for the erring; counsel for the tempted, encouragement for the desponding; hope for the fallen.
How Men Propose
by Agnes Stevens
Divided into sections such as the youthful proposal, the humble proposal, the unsuccessful proposal etc.
The Young Man's Guide
by William A. Alcott
Strong opionions on tobacco, gaming, shooting, and most other things that might be considered enjoyment.
The Young Man's Own Book
Self-improvement, etiquette manual, popular and much-reprinted in the first half of the 19th century.