How to Marry Harry: Chivalry, Part Two

British etiquette expert Dowager Robinson here. When courting a prince, one must keep their guard up, which is where this second part of my chivalry guide comes in handy. And after reading the guide, cast a vote on your favorite British bachelor in our facebook poll.

Love a man in uniform? Vote for Harry here.

So, notebooks out. First point, a man should stand up to greet a woman the first time he meets her but there is no need to be a jack-in-the-box – jumping up and down every time she goes to powder her nose. The modern British gentleman should focus on instinctive gestures rather than contrived behaviour that feels outdated and oppressive. If you notice these acts are anything other than genuine kindness, he is not doing his job properly.
It’s important to remember that chivalry does not guarantee a good catch. There may be a rascal or two out to get their hands on your trust fund, or who’ll pick up the check but will shoot
 at the waitress while they’re at it. Be wary of these dark knights and lechy lotharios. Here’s my checklist; only a take home a man home if he tickes all the boxes:
  • He rarely loses his temper, and never in public.
  • He can seemingly handle any situation that is thrown at him.
  • He is patient, and left unruffled by life’s daily irritations.
  • He is modest, yet confident, and cultivates an air of ease.

Now that we’ve given you the rundown. tell us your ideal Brit catch. Is it Harry’s hand you’re after, or the foppish charm of Mr. Colin Firth? Or if you’re one for the bad guys, step forward Simon Cowell. Let us know by voting in our facebook poll… we’ll publish the results next week!

With a smile like that, how bad can he be? If you're one for the bad guys, cast a vote for Simon here.

How to Marry Harry: Chivalry

Did you miss our ‘How to Marry Harry’ guide this Monday? Unfortunately our etiquette expert Dowager Robinson was struck down with a case of Acute Manneritis (the politest illness of them all). But she’s back to fighting fit and here to give you the third lesson readying you for your very own Royal wedding. And this week, she’s talking chivalry.

The only photograph of the mysterious Dowager Robinson known to be in existence.

Hello ladies; and gentlemen at the back. After the rip-roaring success of my guides to the correct frame of mind, the importance of discretion, and how to act at the dinner table, it’s time you got something in return. Having wowed your prince, he should be trying his damndest to keep you in the bag. And this is where chivalry comes in: aka. the courteous behavior of a man towards a woman.

We're almost there!

Throughout history, flawless manners and polite masculinity were the defining characteristics of the British gent. Smooth talking Mr Smiths have been holding doors open and helping put coats on for centuries. Indeed, many believe it all started with Sir Walter Raleigh placing his cloak over a puddle back in the 1600’s to prevent Queen Elizebeth I muddying her shoes.

Sir Walter Raleigh: the archetypal gentleman.

So, the big question: when is chivalry appropriate and when is it patronizing?

Adapting traditional gestures to fit in with Britian’s new relaxed ways is a tricky challenge. Chivalry is no longer about treating a woman differently or making grand gestures, it’s about generally being a good bloke. This doesn’t come naturally to all men but, unlike a sense of humour, good etiquette can be learned.

Madison Avenue, 1956. It's the simple gestures that count. Now don't you want yourself a man like that?

To be chivalrous in 2012 is to strike a balance between showing a woman you treasure her while also respecting her independence. Chivalry has been somewhat on the wane since World War II, but in order to achive this properly you MUST genuinlly both treasure and respect her. Until you do you will never be a TRUE gentleman and you will get found out.

Your prince in shining armor.

We’ll get into specifics next week, but for the meantime, here’s four key traits your prince should display at all times:

• He has an air of sociability and hospitality.

• He is unrushed, calm and always has time.

• He is in control of life, and never stressed.

• He is naturally charming to everyone he meets.