Know Your Brahmins, Vol. 13, Issue 18

What used to be known as Good Family, unfortunately, ceased to matter a long time ago, as that venerable social historian Cleveland Amory demonstrated in his delicious indictment Who Killed Society? But it helps to know Who Was Who, as it were, so Etiquetteer was delighted to be directed to this quiz of "Name the Boston Brahmins." The Brahmins are the highest of the priestly classes in the Hindu religion. Some wag, recognizing the aloof qualities of Boston's first families, used "apt alliteration's artful aid" to bestow this Perfectly Proper nickname. You may be interested to know that Etiquetteer scored 25 out of a possible 30, and was greatly helped by having read another essential Cleveland Amory history, The Proper Bostonians.

What is interesting to note is that few of these families remain visible in public life in the 21st century. And that indeed, the traditional Yankee qualities of simplicity and thrift are being displaced in Boston. The Boston Globe reports that "In just the past seven years, the number of millionaires in Massachusetts has grown by 33,000." Etiquetteer can just see Cleveland Amory shaking his head and muttering "New money."