Youth’s Behavior or Decency in Conversation Amongst Men by Francis Hawkins (Washington State University)George Washington wrote out a copy of the 110 Rules of Civility in his school book when he was about sixteen-years old. Vote for your favorite or comment on which Rule you think is still relevant today.

These maxims originated in the late sixteenth century in France and were popularly circulated during Washington's time. This exercise, now regarded as a formative influence in the development of his character, included guidelines for behavior in pleasant company, appropriate actions in formal situations, and general courtesies.

Rule No. 41

Undertake not to Teach your equal in the art himself Proffesses; it Savours of arrogancy.

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Rule No. 42

Let thy ceremonies in Courtesie be proper to the Dignity of his place [with whom thou conversest for it is absurd to ac]t the same with a Clown and a Prince.

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Rule No. 43

Do not express Joy before one sick or in pain for that contrary Passion will aggravate his Misery.

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Rule No. 44

When a man does all he can though it Succeeds not well blame not him that did it.

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Rule No.45

Being to advise or reprehend any one, consider whether it ought to be in publick or in Private; presently, or at Some other time in what terms to do it & in reproving Shew no Sign of Cholar but do it with all Sweetness and Mildness.

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Rule No. 46

Take all Admonitions thankfully in what Time or Place Soever given but afterwards not being culpable take a Time [&] Place convenient to let him him know it that gave them.

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Rule No. 47

Mock not nor Jest at any thing of Importance break [n]o Jest that are Sharp Biting and if you Deliver any thing witty and Pleasent abtain from Laughing thereat yourself.

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Rule No. 48

Wherein wherein you reprove Another be unblameable yourself; for example is more prevalent than Precepts.

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Rule No. 49

Use no Reproachfull Language against any one neither Curse nor Revile.

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Rule No. 50

Be not hasty to beleive flying Reports to the Disparag[e]ment of any.

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