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A Victorian Scrapbook

A Scrapbook of Newspaper Articles Compiled by George Burgess (1829-1905)

Victorian Family, People and Relationships

A Few Hints for Femininity

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Transcript from original newspaper article: -


A Few Hints for FemininityThe following “loud” hints are respectfully submitted by one of the sex: - Don’t make a confidante of the first interesting young lady you meet. A woman can’t keep a secret any more than a sieve can hold water; and ten to one she’ll tell the whole story to the sister of a nice young man of her acquaintance. Then you can imagine the consequences! Don’t sit down to your crotchet-work of embroidery unless you have first mended that home in your stocking. No use crowding it under the heel of your shoe. Rags, like murder, will out; and they speak with terribly loud voices and at inconvenient seasons, sometimes. Don’t undertake to write skim-milk poetry, whenever you feel little indisposed towards enthusiasm. Go and do a kind action, or speak an encouraging word to somebody, it the “poetic” impulse must have vent. Depend upon it, you’ll be better satisfied afterwards. Don’t pretend to be angry because gentlemen have the audacity to look at you when you promenade the streets in your best bonnet. What do you go there for, if not to be seen? The more you affect indignation, the more the offending wretches won’t believe it. Don’t pay two or three pounds for the aforesaid bonnet, and then complain that “pa” is in such narrow circumstances that you cannot afford to give a shilling in charity. Don’t keep a gentleman waiting half an hour, when he calls, while you put on lace and ribbons, and arrange curls; he isn’t a fool, whatever you may think on the subject, and will probably form his own ideas upon your original appearance. Don’t run and hide like a frightened rabbit when a gentleman puts his head into the room where you are sweeping or dusting. If there is anything to be ashamed of in the business why do you do it? Don’t proclaim to the world that you can’t exist without six Paris bonnets in the year, and that life would be a burden without an opera-box and diamonds, and then wonder that the young men “sheer off.” And, above all, when some one does propose, don’t say no when you mean yes. He may take you at your word! If you follow all these precepts, you may one day succeed in getting married, and that you know, is the summit of all earthly ambition!