Friday, December 3, 2010

Left or Right? - Part 1


SIR - A dispute having arisen on a subject on which some bets have been made, we have agreed to refer to you for your decision in the matter (as being the best judge we could think of). It is this, viz. - Whether a gentleman handing a lady down to dinner should give her his right arm or left. If you would be kind enough to answer this in your next, you will oblige your constant reader,
Trin. Coli., Cambridge, Monday, April 26.

[We hold that there is but one rule in the case referred to: the gentleman gives the wall to the lady. Is it quite true that some two or three years ago the law was violated for a short time, like many other laws, for the sake of expediency. The ladies then - the more's the pity - wore enormous sleeves, and a proximity to the wall was considered dangerous to the contour of the manches bouffantes. During the continuance of this very absurd fashion, it became advisable to secure as much space as possible for the gigots, and the lady, therefore, preferred being placed next the banisters. But now that the sex have returned to something like their fair proportions, the necessity no longer exists, and the "majesty of the law" is vindicated. The lady resumes the post of honour - ED. MORNING POST.]

Source: The Morning Post, Wednesday April 28, 1841, Page 5, Issue 21929

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