We’ve got a little white book called George-isms. I’m going to put the essence of the introduction to the book here…
When he was a boy, George Washington was given by a teacher (possibly his father) a list of one-hundred-ten rules for living. George had great ambitions as a boy, and he knew that these rules would be invaluable to him. He wrote out the rules in his own handwriting and kept them with him all his life, trying his best to follow them. His intelligence, leadership and vision were not the only things that were part of his success but his gentility and courtesy as well. They took him from the farmlands of Virginia to the battle-fields of the Revolution and eventually, to the first presidency of the United States (under the Constitution; there were multiple presidents before him under the Articles of Confederation but that is neither to the point nor of considerable importance). He knew how to talk to heads of state and common soldiers; he knew how to behave in royal courts and local taverns. The 110 Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior is a standard we would all do well to imitate.
Here and there I will post a few “George-isms” in the original spelling, sometimes giving a paraphrase so one won’t be obliged to sit and puzzle out the meaning if one is already late for one’s bath…
1st Every Action done in Company, ought to be with Some Sign of Respect, to those that are Present.
2d [sic] When in Company, put not your Hands to any Part of the Body, not usualy Discovered.
(don’t figet or scratch unseemly parts of the body in the presence of others)
3d Shew Nothing to your Freind that may affright him.
4th In the Presence of Others Sing not to yourself with a humming Noise, nor Drum with your Fingers or Feet.
5th If You Cough, Sneeze, Sigh, or Yawn, do it not Loud but Privately; and Speak not in your Yawning, but put Your handkercheif or Hand before your face and turn aside.
(I recommend it being your handkerchief )