If We Didn't Shake Hands, How Would We Greet Each Other?

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Kellan Sullivan, Mar 14, 2019 at 2:15 PM.

  1. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    Basically, what if we didn't shake hands on meeting one another?

    The story goes that Marie Antoinette and several French courtiers were intrigued by this "English" gesture. (It's not actually English, since IIRC there are carvings from ancient Persians showing a variation of the handshake). But, how would we greet one another? Salutes? Kiss on each cheek (à la Français)? How DID people PHYSICALLY greet each other if they didn't shake hands? Would things perhaps be more limited by each country/language - i.e. the English shake hands and the French/Italians kiss cheeks, etc? Rather than a universal gesture?

    I'm asking specifically with European cultures in mind.
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019 at 2:56 PM
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  2. The Tai-Pan The Pagemaster

    Jun 10, 2015
    I mean, bowing (of various sorts) has a very long lineage, both East and West.
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  3. Skallagrim Not the one from YouTube. Different other fellow.

    Feb 5, 2014
    Yeah, bows and cursies etc. make sense.

    Of course, there's always room for a world where the Roman salute doesn't get co-opted by a bunch of dicks.
  4. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    Do you think this would just be like a perfunctory bow or as in some serious kowtowing?

    Two businessmen sealing a deal by saluting each other could be fun to see.
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  5. Jared Voldemort Jnr

    Mar 9, 2004
    Kingdom of Australia
  6. Skallagrim Not the one from YouTube. Different other fellow.

    Feb 5, 2014
    Gradations, possibly, based on relative social status. You nod to an equal, and truly bow before a superior. Perhaps certain fanciful protocols for special occasions. (Indeed, you could see buinessmen bowing to each other in specific ways to open negotiations, and then in other specific ways at the end of either successful or unsuccessful talks.)

    And in the modern day, we could increasingly see progressives opposed to these old-fashioned forms, with youthful social activists even deploring and condemning all of it as classism etc.
  7. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    Sounds about right.
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  8. funnyhat Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2013
    I've not heard that story but it's got to be apocryphal. Shaking hands has been common in Europe since at least medieval times.
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  9. Analytical Engine Monarchist Collectivist Federalist

    Mar 12, 2007
    UK, EU (for the moment), Earth
    Since the shaking hands business is saying "look, my weapon hand doesn't have any weapon in it, let's be cordial to each other", maybe a gentle wave or touching palms together? Alternatively, there is the gripping each other's elbow.
  10. Atterdag Well-Known Member

    Jun 19, 2018
    Hand on your heart.
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  11. ShortsBelfast Events, dear boy, events

    May 20, 2016
    Some cultures raised both hands in greeting and I once read that the traditional pre Cultural Revolution Chinese each shook hands with themselves. As Analytical Engine says, the practice is intended to demonstrate the lack of a weapon and hence businesslike or friendly interaction. So anything that does that is suitably equivalent.
  12. Fabius Maximus Unus qui nobis cunctando restituit rem

    Apr 3, 2013
    Perfidious Albion
    Or maybe a "hands up" gesture.
  13. stevej713 Well-Known Member

    Jan 13, 2018
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  14. lumina Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2018
    High fives and fist bumps.
  15. sarapen Well-Known Member

    Jul 22, 2009
    Full anal penetration.
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  16. Mightyboosh5 Well-Known Member

    May 7, 2015
    open palm slap
  17. Ace Venom Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2004
    Since I am such a metalhead, I like the metal horns (or evil eye) as a form of greeting.
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  18. Nephi Well-Known Member

    Mar 16, 2017
    Fist bumps.
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  19. Nephi Well-Known Member

    Mar 16, 2017
    Lol what. Haha haha
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  20. SlyDessertFox BUST *CLAP* THOSE *CLAP *TRUSTS*

    Jul 19, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    *Walks into office*

    "Oh hey Bob...Karen."

    *hits chest and extends out arm*
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