While it may be a medieval term, chivalry is not in fact dead. It’s just had a bit of a hard time keeping up with us. (Ever tried holding a revolving door open?) But in a society in which acting like a gentleman is increasingly deprioritized, being chivalrous makes more of an impact than ever before.
“In today’s world, being nice is practically revolutionary,” says Annie Dean, etiquette expert and founder of anniedean.com. “A man with great manners is totally in control of himself and his environment. It’s very alpha; it’s very attractive.”
The benefits of familiarizing yourself with the dos and don’ts of chivalry extend beyond showcasing your gentlemanly demeanor; it’s a confidence booster, too. “It avoids a lot of the ‘should I’ or ‘shouldn’t I’ questions,” says Deborah King, president of Final Touch Finishing School, allowing you to focus more on your date.
But which actions are still considered gentlemanlike? Do you really need to lay your jacket down over a puddle so she doesn’t get her Manolos wet? Or what about getting up from your seat every time she leaves the table? The guys on Mad Men do it—should you? Learn which actions will ensure she’ll have a positive night to tell her girlfriends about and how to avoid coming off as an overeager butler.