The idea of the Gentleman grew out of the traditions of knighthood in a very dangerous period of history.
While the concepts of knighthood and honor have long been out of fashion, some of the behaviors from that time still have meaning and purpose. The core concepts of the knight and the gentleman are similar: Protect the weak and defenseless, show compassion and mercy, speak the truth, and be courteous to others, especially women.
So what are some of the actual behaviors of a true modern gentleman?
A gentleman holds the door for others to go in. He definitely opens the door for women and lets them go through first.
A gentleman shows up when he says he is going to show up and doesn’t leave others waiting. It is rude to show up late and waste other people’s time. Not only is being on time courteous, but it shows that you value their time.
Walks closest to the Curb
Walking close to the curb and putting yourself between a woman and any potential danger is what a gentleman does.
Offers his Jacket
If a woman is cold and doesn’t have a jacket, and you do, then you sacrifice your personal comfort to make a lady more comfortable.
Helps her be seated
A gentleman pulls out a woman’s seat for her and helps her move the seat in closer to the table.
He is Courteous
It seems like a small thing, but saying “please” and “thank you” to people shows courtesy and respect for others. It is a minor thing and costs you nothing, but can earn you valuable points with people.
Offers his Seat
If you are on the bus/subway/park bench and a woman does not have a seat, then you offer your seat. A gentleman sacrifices even small things like personal comfort for a short commute.
Offers His Arm
When out on a date, and you and your date are walking, offer your arm. It is classy, and women like to walk arm-in-arm with a gentleman.
Has Table Manners
Appropriate table manners mean a lot and show that you are not some uncouth barbarian. If you are at a BBQ joint, then by all means use your fingers and get messy. But, if you are eating at a restaurant with silverware, then use them; that knife and fork are there for a reason. Also, put your napkin on your lap. It shows refinement and class.
Is Not Rude to People
Even if the service is horrible, take the high road and be polite. It doesn’t cost you anything, it shows you can restrain your emotions, and it shows empathy and basic respect for others.
Picks up the Check
A gentleman reaches for the check, and in most cases should insist on paying. The rare occasions when a gentleman doesn’t pick up the check, he at least makes the attempt to get the check and puts up a token struggle before conceding. When he picks up the check, whether for a date or for friends, he never expects something in return.
When someone is talking, you should be listening and listening closely. Don’t fiddle with your phone or watch the TV in the background. Look at the speaker and listen to what they are saying. A gentleman also notices how others look. Complement a woman sincerely. “You look stunning” is an appropriate compliment and will always make a woman smile.
Keeps his Word
If a gentleman says he is going to be somewhere or do something, he does it. It is that simple. Do what you say you are going to do.
Keeps a Secret
If a gentleman is told something in confidence, then that information goes into the vault. He doesn’t blab it to others.
Does Not Kiss and Tell
Nobody needs to know what your significant other looks like without clothes, how good they are in the sack or what freaky things they like. Keep it to yourself.
Does Not Hit Women
A gentleman’s role is to protect women even at the cost of their own life. A gentleman never hurts a woman. The only exception to this is if a woman is trying to kill an innocent person. Outside of extreme circumstances, a man should never lay his hands on a woman in anger.
Waits For Others to Get Their Food Before Eating
When at a restaurant, a gentleman waits until everyone has been served before starting to eat. It shows patience and courtesy.
A gentleman tells the truth even if it hurts him. Honorable people tell the truth, always. A gentleman is trustworthy.
Gets Stuff Done
A gentleman knows how to do stuff and gets those things done. A gentleman can fix the car, splint a broken limb, change the baby’s diaper or cook dinner. Gentlemen know how to do things and can get those things done. He is a jack of all trades, a Renaissance man, or the most interesting man in the world.
Protects the Defenseless
A gentleman, at his core, is a warrior and stands ready to jump into harms way to protect the innocent. Bravery, courage and fearlessness are the hallmarks of a gentleman. He stands up for the downtrodden, he protects women and children, and he risks his life to save the lives of others.