Call on us! Victoriana Magazine is now on Instagram

Victorian etiquette would never approve of Instagram. See why.

You can “call on us” via today’s social media (Instagram • Twitter • Facebook • Pinterest) which is instant and has few rules of etiquette. It was quite different a hundred years ago with a multitude of rules which few would have the courage to break. These rules were explained by the Delineator.

calling cards

 

• It is generally understood that women leave their husband’s cards. The custom is for a married woman calling formally on another married woman to leave one of her own and two of her husband’s cards, one of his being for the hostess, the other for her husband….
• As a rule, it is impossible to do more than make a single call a year on acquaintances in large cities, and this is supposed to be sufficient…
• Occasions when other calls are obligatory. After a wedding breakfast, a luncheon, a dinner, a card party, or any evening entertainment to which one has been invited, a call should be made after the event whether one has accepted or not….
• When an invitation to a church wedding, or a marriage announcement, is received, it is necessary to send cards to those in whose name it was issued and to the newly married pair…
• In large cities it is usual to leave cards when attending an afternoon tea…
• It is bad form to write “regrets” or “accepts” on a card. A note of reply must be written in acknowledgement of an invitation…
• It is unreasonable to fancy that one’s acquaintance is not desired because a call has not been returned promptly. There are many reasons for delayed calls. Illness in the family, absence from town, many occupations, may prevent the best-intentioned persons from making calls….
• If an acquaintance calls after a long delay it is a duty to welcome her cordially… to hasten to accept any explanation she may offer and not to allude to it again….
[from…. Delineator]