Pleasures and Pastimes of the Bourgeoisie


Etiquette in Social Clubs
~ Pre -revolution

~Fashion in Les Mis

~Rise in Popularity
~Economic and Social Symbolism
~Representation in Les Mis

Gardens ~17th Century ~18th Century ~19th Century ~Versailles

Gambling ~Pre-Revolutionary ~Cafés & Cercles

Opéra & Theatre
~The Revolution
~Social Status
~Les Misérables

Etiquette ~Promenade ~Dances ~Dinner ~Casinos and Salons

Bibliography ~Fashion ~Etiquette ~Restaurants ~Opéra ~Picture Bibliography


The Gentleman's Cercle

(click on image for coarse information)

"The decorum of a cercle was its most important asset. Statutes elaborated on members' conduct at length: no member was to enter a cercle exspecting that cafe standards of behavior applied. The policing of cercle was the main function of its administrative bureau, composed of officers elected annually. The reputation of the cercle as an assembly of worthy and responsible men depended on their ensuring that the manners and moral of the society never descended into the cafe." Harrison

"It was the duty of a gentleman always to pay his gambling debts, and that before any other kind of debt." In Diderot and d'Alembert's Encyclopedie it is written, "One might ask why gambling debts are so rigorously honored in polite society while the same people often feel little scruple in neglecting far more sacred debts. The answer lies in the fact that in gambling one assets a man's work in a situation where there is no legal recourse. A trust has been extended to which one must respond." Kavanagh

To find out more about the cercles visit Kelly's Cafes & Cercles page.


The Salon

Though both sexes could attend, the salon was the only social club where is was permissible for ladies to attend. The salon was a haven for those who craved intellectual conversation but the best salons were the ones that were frequented by those of exemplary manners.

"When M. Gillenormand lived in the Rue Sirvandoni, he frequented several very good and highly noble salons. Although a bourgeois, M. Gillenormand was welcome in them, and as he had a twofold stock of wit, namely, that which he had and that attributed to him, he was sought after and made much of." - Marius, Book III; chapter 1.



To find out more about the salon visit Paris; the city of light.

(click on picture for source information)