Thrift store find: Shall Girls Propose?

Was cleaning up the ol’ office recently and saw this book, which I picked up a while ago from some odd thrift store adventure in the distant past.

The title and author of the book have always intrigued me: Shall Girls Propose? by A “Speculative Bachelor.” The publication date has intrigued me more: it was published in 1891 by the Cassell Publishing Company.

In case you’re math is as bad as mine, that’s 120 years old. (I used a calculator.)

The book seems to be a collection of essays about love and a women’s “role” (or lack thereof) in it. One of may favorite passages is on page 49, Part II of the chapter entitled “Proposals of Marriage”:

Fully persuaded I am that a considerable part of the charm of the American girl, which is undeniable the world over, is owing largely to her freedom of social privilege. She is denied the initiative in love, to be sure, but she can draw out a proposal a fatal facility that the girl of no other nation can command.

That’s awesome. There have been countless books, movies and television shows whose plots revolve around that very concept.

It seems that some things have remained  unchanged in the past 120 years after all.

Anyway, does anyone know anything about this book? A Google search seems to reveal little, other than side notes and eBay auctions.

Front page

Publication date and dedication


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