Where Did The Word “Etiquette” Come From?

by Anne Paup on October 12, 2010

Dorothea Johnson, the founder of The Protocol School of Washington, shares an interesting historical tidbit from her Professional Business Savvy course.

“Etiquette used to mean “keep off the grass”. When Louis XIV’s gardener at Versailles discovered that the aristocrats were trampling through his gardens, he put up signs, or étiquets, to warn them off….

Gradually, the meaning of etiquette was expanded to include the ticket to court functions that listed the rules of where to stand and what to do.”

Today, I tell my students that good etiquette is, indeed, your “ticket”. Wherever you are, or whatever you are doing, knowing the rules of behavior for that particular situation will definitely affect your corporate climb, inclusiveness in a family, or at the very least, insure another invitation!

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