Story: Manners and social behaviour

The handshake

The handshake

This sketch by William Hawkins depicts him (centre, wearing a bowler hat) greeting his sailor cousin, Thomas Bailey, on board the Kaikoura in Wellington Harbour on 5 February 1867. The men had not seen each other for two and a half years. Shaking hands was until quite recently the only socially acceptable way for adult Anglo-Saxon men to greet or farewell each other, even if they were close relatives.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: E-370-005-1
Ink drawing by William Webster Hawkins

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Nancy Swarbrick, 'Manners and social behaviour - Defining manners', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 23 September 2023)

Story by Nancy Swarbrick, published 5 Sep 2013