History Of Etiquette
It all began when human kind first began to interact with each other during the prehistoric age. People realised they wanted to find a way to communicate that didn't involve fighting and stealing. These thoughts turned into gentle actions with certain rituals forming the basics of politeness and rules for proper social and commercial conduct. This was the beginnings of etiquette and manners.
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continuing The History of Etiquette - The French Royal Court
It's amusing that during the 17th and 18th century it was the French Royal court that set the guidelines for formal etiquette as we know it today.
Royal court members needed only to be present at the King's palace attending to his every request. Thus, the nobles who lived at court developed what could be regarded as an 'action plan' of how persons were to act in certain social and business situations. It was this code of practice that became know across Europe as 'Etiquette' (an old French word meaning ticket), and adopted by other European courts and the upper classes.