Front Page Titles (by Subject) RULES OF ETIQUETTE 1 - The Works, vol. 10 (Correspondence and Papers 1803-1807)
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RULES OF ETIQUETTE 1 - Thomas Jefferson, The Works, vol. 10 (Correspondence and Papers 1803-1807) 
The Works of Thomas Jefferson, Federal Edition (New York and London, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1904-5). Vol. 10.
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RULES OF ETIQUETTE1
[Nov. ? 1803.]
i. In order to bring the members of society together in the first instance, the custom of the country has established that residents shall pay the first visit to strangers, and, among strangers, first comers to later comers, foreign and domestic; the character of stranger ceasing after the first visits. To this rule there is a single exception. Foreign ministers, from the necessity of making themselves known, pay the first visit to the ministers of the nation, which is returned.
ii. When brought together in society, all are perfectly equal, whether foreign or domestic, titled or untitled, in or out of office.
All other observances are but exemplifications of these two principles.
I. 1st. The families of foreign ministers, arriving at the seat of government, receive the first visit from those of the national ministers, as from all other residents.
2d. Members of the Legislature and of the Judiciary, independent of their offices, have a right as strangers to receive the first visit.
II. 1st. No title being admitted here, those of foreigners give no precedence.
2d. Differences of grade among diplomatic members, give no precedence.
3d. At public ceremonies, to which the government invites the presence of foreign ministers and their families, a convenient seat or station will be provided for them, with any other strangers invited and the families of the national ministers, each taking place as they arrive, and without any precedence.
4th. To maintain the principle of equality, or of pêle mêle, and prevent the growth of precedence out of courtesy, the members of the Executive will practice at their own houses, and recommend an adherence to the ancient usage of the country, of gentlemen in mass giving precedence to the ladies in mass, in passing from one apartment where they are assembled into another.
[1 ]Endorsed in Jefferson’s hand: “This rough paper contains what was agreed upon.”