Lord Chesterfield to His Son: On Women
July 29, 2010 Leave a comment
September 5, O.S. 1748.
“As women are a considerable, or at least a pretty numerous part of company; and as their
suffrages go a great way toward establishing a man’s character in the fashionable part of the
world (which is of great importance to the fortune and figure he proposes to make in it), it
is necessary to please them.
you to know, but which you must, with the utmost care, conceal and never seem to know.
wit; but for solid reasoning, good sense, I never knew in my life one that had it, or who
reasoned or acted consequentially for four-and-twenty hours together. Some little passion or
humor always breaks upon their best resolutions. Their beauty neglected or controverted,
their age increased, or their supposed understandings depreciated, instantly kindles their
little passions, and overturns any system of consequential conduct, that in their most
reasonable moments they might have been capable of forming.
with a sprightly forward child; but he neither consults them about, nor trusts them with
serious matters; though he often makes them believe that he does both; which is the thing in
the world that they are proud of; for they love mightily to be dabbling in business (which by
the way they always spoil); and being justly distrustful that men in general look upon them
in a trifling light, they almost adore that man who talks more seriously to them, and who
seems to consult and trust them; I say, who seems; for weak men really do, but wise ones only
seem to do it.