1889′s Hints To Lady Travellers reprinted~
The Royal Geographic Society is reprinting Lillias Campbell Davidson’s Hints To Lady Travellers.
“the book was liberating for many women in the late Victorian world – and catered for the fledgling market of independent women travellers with practical, and at times opinionated and outspoken, advice.
Back in 1889, travel was not only more difficult and dangerous (for both sexes), but also deemed by society to be an unsuitable and unseemly pursuit for the ‘weaker sex’.”
ADVICE FROM ‘HINTS FOR LADY TRAVELLERS’
On appropriate dress for cycling tours:
‘Wear as few petticoats as possible; dark woollen stockings in winter, and cotton in summer; shoes, never boots; and have your gown made neatly and plainly of flannel without loose ends or drapery to catch in your [bicycle]… Grey is the best colour, or heather mixture tweed, which does not show dust or mud stains, and yet cannot lose its colour under a hot sun.’
On tipping cab drivers:
‘The demand usually made by a cabman for ‘something for himself’ is one which has no legal foundation, and cannot possibly be claimed. Still when one considers the wretched life of a cab driver one is not inclined to grudge a small sop to Cerberus.’
On British reserve:
‘There is certainly something very agreeable in the Continental habit of exchanging bows with every stranger who enters one’s railway carriage or hotel coffee room, and it grates a good deal on one’s sense of human kindliness to return to the cold repellent stare which replaces this habit of courtesy in our own country.
On tea while travelling:
‘There cannot be a doubt that the intemperate use of this most delightful and refreshing beverage is becoming a grave evil amongst Englishwomen…It is a thousand pities to abuse by excess one of the most rational, pleasant and innocent indulgences which are open to the use of womankind.’
‘Care should be taken in selecting a deck chair not to get one which is too light, otherwise your enjoyable after-dinner nap on deck may be abruptly terminated by a sudden lurch of the vessel, and you may find yourself overturned, chair and all, and sent flying to the other side of the ship in a manner more sudden than graceful.’
And remember, never travel without a ‘small flask of brandy’, ‘strong smelling salts’ and an ‘eau de toilette.’