We live in an amazing time when the complexity of the functioning of the surrounding world simplifies the structure of the inner world. To be faster and more productive, you need resources, and the simplest thing is to draw them not from outside, but to the detriment of what touches, excites and allows you to improve.
Empathy and education are the first to be exchanged. Gaps can be covered up with good manners, but how much are they worth without other virtues? This is beautifully written by Theodore Dreiser in An American Tragedy.
If we are talking about classical terminology, then gentlemen in Britain were called noble young men with a good upbringing and noble manners, who, however, did not always have the opportunity to receive a title or inheritance.
As a rule, these were the youngest children of aristocratic families, who, by the will of fate, were at the end of the line for inheritance. When it is unfortunate to have a coat of arms, virtues and the ability to stand on an equal footing in a decent society come first. Manners, nobility, loyalty to one’s word and one’s principles – these are the main values of a worthy Englishman from the new gentry class.
Gentleman of the 21st century
In the 19th century a gentleman began to be called a person who, among other things, lived on the income from his property or inheritance and did not need to earn money. Any activity associated with manual labor deprived the right to be called a gentleman. This taboo persisted until the 20th century; in rare cases, only trade was allowed. Selfless doctors or people associated with the world of subtle matters (actors, violinists, artists, magicians) could not count on status.
Requirements for the lady were softer. The word itself in Old English sounded like “mistress”. The title and the material component were also not as important as refined manners and upbringing. But the observance of all the rules went against the habitual life of poor English women, therefore, wealthy townswomen and aristocrats fell into the circle of ladies.
Women not so long ago got equal rights with men to work and education, because the ladies did not take into their hands anything heavier than a needle and thread or a prayer book. But in the ability to keep oneself in society and control emotions, they had no equal.
Ladies and gentlemen successfully complemented each other in the ideal picture of secular society, sharing privileges and spheres of influence among themselves. But even a well-oiled mechanism, having lost one link, is not able to work as before. When we complain about the fact that “gentlemen are not the same”, it is worth considering, but where is the lady. Glasses embarrassment
Chasing the ideals of the 19th century is utopian and pointless, but finding their points of intersection with realities is quite reasonable. After all, a hundred years ago and now, all components are equally important – manners, nobility, loyalty to one’s word and education.
Yes, they don’t take off their hats to say hello. But on the other hand, this gesture was replaced by an earpiece removed from the ear. The taste of the candy remained the same, only the wrapper has changed. smile You can be polite, generous and well-mannered in any era.