Letter writing and manners

” Every letter should be carefully and distinctly written. No one has a right to inflict on another an illegibly written missive, it being the height of egotism to assume that a communication will be of sufficient interest to the recipient for him to be willing to make a study of it.”

Caroline Bantung, in an 1897 Good Housekeeping.  She wrote an entire article on the niceties of writing letters, giving crisp, clear, and quite firm opinions on everything from the colour of the paper and ink (creamy white, black), type of pen (steel), to punctuation, spelling, closing, and postage.

 

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One Comment

  1. Frances
    Posted May 14, 2018 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    I really must, in justice to Jane, apologise for her writing so short a letter—only two pages you see—hardly two—and in general she fills the whole paper and crosses half. My mother often wonders that I can make it out so well. She often says, when the letter is first opened, ‘Well, Hetty, now I think you will be put to it to make out all that checker-work’—don’t you, ma’am?—And then I tell her, I am sure she would contrive to make it out herself, if she had nobody to do it for her—every word of it—I am sure she would pore over it till she had made out every word.

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