Conversational Pointers from 150 Years Ago


Though these tips for being a good conversationalist are reprinted on The Art of Manliness, they apply to any speaker regardless of gender.

What’s truly surprising about them is that they were published in 1875 but are still, for the most part, good advice. For example:

20. Speak your own language correctly; at the same time do not be too great a stickler for formal correctness of phrases.

Lauren O'Neal is an MFA student at San Francisco State University. Her writing has appeared in publications like Slate, The New Inquiry, and The Hairpin. You can follow her on Twitter at @laureneoneal. More from this author →