Time, travel and the emergence of style.

June 10, 2023

Today we take the unique for granted, like we think nothing of a “short” trip of some six thousand miles. There was an era, in some parts of the world not so long ago, in which a trip to a village across a wide river was like a world journey and only family names were particularly distinctive. Although tourism can be traced back to the early Christian pilgrimages, to Santiago, Lourdes, or Rome, it was the 19th century that introduced what we know today as individual travel.

The “grand tour” as it was known in the English-speaking world, was an extended visit to the capitals and scenic points of the Western peninsula. It gave rise not only to the travel log genre but inspired the writers, painters and composers that form the canon of Western culture today. Without this explicitly individual exploration, we probably would not have that peculiarly Western fascination with individual style, whether in words, habits or attire.

Thus this weblog draws on the tradition of more than two centuries of individual travel to explore the sources of a gentleman’s sense of uniqueness, his sense of time and style. Needless to say this history did not shape gentlemen alone. However, it is not necessary to imitate the development of feminine style in order to render it due appreciation. Without our history and a conscious sense of time and space, it is all to tempting to turn a serene gait into an unending race.

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