What is a gentleman?

What makes a gentleman?  Do they exist anymore?  Did feminism kill the gentleman? Do women still like having a man open a door for them?  Is chivalry dead?

I must admit I still like men opening doors for me, showing respect, curbing their language when I am around and dashing to my aid when in need?  In today’s feminist world this is all a little old-fashion and I can see many women frowning at me for saying this.  My dad is a gentleman and he is my gauge of how I expect men to behave and the way I have tried to bring up my sons.  However my sons have said to me that when they hold doors open for women they find that some women are downright rude to them.  So they stop doing it because of the comments they receive.   It’s a sad world.

According to the Webster’s Dictionary a gentleman is defined as: "A polite, gracious or considerate man with high standards of propriety or correct behaviour".

Below are attributes that I think makes a gentleman — what do you think? 
  • giving up a seat for a lady
  • holding a door open for a lady
  • gives women respect
  • lending a helping hand when someone is in need
  • looking to the welfare and comfort of others
  • honest, keeps his word
  • well mannered
  • hold good moral values
  • does not take an undue advantage of his power or the weaknesses of those around him
  • never arrogant
  • polite and kind
  • dislikes gossip
  • keeps himself away from badmouthing people
 What makes a Christian gentleman — all of the above plus:
  • gracious and considerate man with high standards of propriety and correct behaviour based on the scriptures
  • keenly aware of the influence of his life on others
  • setting the right examples in being gentle and kind in all of his dealings with his wife, children, friends, relatives and neighbours
  • providing for his family
  • loving his wife as Christ loved the church
He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?  Micah 6:8

When I do come across a man that behave like this, I sadly admit I am often surprised as I just don’t see it very often.  Gentlemen come in all ages and from all backgrounds,  I have met some very rude elderly men and some very polite young men.

Lets bring up our sons so the ideal of being a gentleman doesn't die and teach our daughters to show respect to our gentleman.



  1. Obviously you don't use public transport. When I was young, any man would give up his seat so a woman would not have to stand. This does not happen today. Men do not give up seats for women anymore. I believe women have only themselves to blame since they want to be treated as equal with men but only when it suits them. Now ones sometimes sees women as well as men giving up seats for "needier" people, but this is not often.
    How sad that your sons have stopped doing what is right just because of other people's rudeness. If we all stopped showing acts of kindness to others because of the response we received none of us would do anything for anyone else anymore.
    Maybe this extends into family life as well and contributes to disfunctional families.

  2. Anonymous: My sons are still polite and respectful and hold doors open etc.. and try and do the right thing, they are just more aware of how rude women can be and when you are 18 or 20 you don't really want negative comments all the time for doing the right thing. One works in retail and has witnessed all types of rudeness and now far more wary of how people treat each others. If people are so rude in public I do wonder what they are like at home.

    No, I don't catch the bus often and when I do I have seen older women and pregnant women standing and have noticed on occasions other women standing up and giving up their seats. Children don't seem to give up their seats very often either.

    Yes I do think women have brought this on themselves, which is rather sad.

  3. Jo,

    Our society seems to be short on manners, in general, rather they are male or female, old or young.

    When I am out in the public, I find that true Manliness (e.g., being a gentlemen) is a "mixed bag." Sometimes, I will come across men who are polite, and at other times, I come across men who are quite rude and obnoxious. I guess it just all depends on the individual.

    However, I will agree that the concept of being a gentlemen for a man is going by the wayside. I'm sure there are many reasons for this, and obviously, the development of feminism has not helped to quench this epidemic.

    -Lady Rose

  4. Well said, Jo.
    I couldn't agree more!

  5. I think it is very very sad that women no longer want to be or act like or be treated like ladies/gentlewomen, and that men are no longer needed to be or respected for being a gentleman (as a generalisation - I realise there are exceptions). I am definitely trying to raise my son to be a gentleman, my daughter to be a lady, and I am very thankful that my father and my husband are gentlemen. I often think the degradation we see today in society is the result of a loss of respect for ourselves (again, a generalisation). People don't act like they want respect (in the old-fashioned sense of being treated like a lady or gentleman), they don't dress like they want respect and they don't speak like they want respect - and I think it all ties in together. There is almost NO dignity and respect left, except among the very few who retain good courtesy and manners.

  6. WE also need to teach our duaghters how to gracious receive gentlemanly gestures.

  7. I agree, Jo. While there are certainly times when it makes sense for me to open the door (in a case where my husband has his hands full), I do enjoy having my husband treat me like a lady. The problem, though, is that in modern society, we are supposed to believe that there aren't differences between women and men. In truth, though, I think it is our differences that make us so interesting!

  8. ha...I must have been tired when I wrote that comment :-)
    Daughters and graciously make more sense!


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