19th century gentleman caller


Hi, Amy. Yes, I agree. Charlotte looks lovely in the dress you loaned her. She looks quite modern considering it's the 19th century you live in.

Something special happening?

Someone came to visit Charlotte? A gentleman caller? You accepted a calling card from him to her? They're in the parlour talking to one another right now? Who? Who is in the parlour with Charlotte? As if I even need to ask.

You actually did it. You gave the guy at the ball who likes Charlotte the address of the house you live in. You knew the lady of the house and her husband wouldn't be home tonight. Sneaky beyond words! I'm sure you also mentioned to Charlotte not to let it be known that she's a maid in the very house you're both living in, isn't that right?

I sound angry? Of course I'm angry. Just like the lady and master of the house will be when they find out what's been going on behind their backs.


Of course I realize you're doing this for Charlotte's sake. You want her to be happy. I get it. But there's no use fighting for what you believe in if you can only win by lying.

Charlotte is a maid who formerly worked in a factory after being raised as a farm girl. There's no changing that reality. Her social standing is far below this gentleman's. The truth will come out.

In the 19th century, a gentleman caller is expected to possess the highest standards of politeness and formality. A calling card, or visiting card, is used by the most refined gentleman as a way of getting acquainted, and  to show high intellect and individuality. 
An acceptable time of arrival would be in the late afternoon, and the visit itself should last not long - fifteen or twenty minutes is considered proper. To arrive before lunch is considered contemptible, rude and a certain rebuff of future visits. The gentleman should be dressed in a waistcoat.


The calling card began as a simple piece of paper with only a signature upon it, but soon evolved to a beautifully crafted and adorned purposeful means of communication.

Along with chaperones, calling cards will become obsolete in the 20th century, especially with the advancement of bicycles, when young men and women will have more freedom to engage in their own communication, away from the prying eyes of their elders.