Post, Emily Price

Post, Emily Price

Post, Emily Price, 1872-1960, American authority on etiquette, b. Baltimore. Born into a wealthy family, Post began her literary career as a novelist. Her best-known book, however, is Etiquette (1922), a practical guide to proper social behavior, written in a lively style. Etiquette gained wide popularity and sold more than a million copies. Emily Post broadcast on the radio after 1931 and produced a daily column on good taste that was syndicated in more than 150 newspapers. Also an authority on interior decoration, she wrote The Personality of a House (1930).

See biography by L. Claridge (2008).

Emily Post (October 27, 1873 - September 25, 1960) was a United States author who promoted what she considered "proper etiquette". She wrote books surrounding the topic of etiquette.


Post was born as Emily Price in Baltimore, Maryland, and was born into privilege as the only daughter of famous architect Bruce Price and his wife Josephine Lee Price. She was educated at home and attended Miss Graham's finishing school in New York, where her family had moved. A popular debutante, she married society banker Edwin Main Post in 1892 and had two sons, Edwin M. Jr. (1893) and Bruce Price (1895). The couple divorced in 1905, due to her husband's affair with a stripper.

At the turn of the century, financial circumstances compelled her to begin writing to earn money, and she produced newspaper articles on architecture and interior design as well as stories and serials for such magazines as Harper's, Scribner's, and The Century, as well as light novels, including Flight of the Moth (1904), Purple and Fine Linen (1906), Woven in the Tapestry (1908), The Title Market (1909), and The Eagle's Feather (1910).

She wrote in various styles, including humorous travel books, early in her career. In 1922 her book Etiquette (full title Etiquette in Society, in Business, in Politics, and at Home) was a best seller, and updated versions continued to be popular for decades.

After 1931, Post spoke on radio programs and wrote a column on good taste for the Bell Syndicate; it appeared daily in some 200 newspapers after 1932.

In 1946, she founded The Emily Post Institute which continues her work. She died in 1960 in her New York City apartment at the age of 86.

Peggy Post, Emily's great-granddaughter-in-law, is the current spokesperson for The Emily Post Institute — and writes etiquette advice for Good Housekeeping magazine, succeeding her mother-in-law, Elizabeth Post.

Peter Post, Emily's great-grandson, writes the "Etiquette at Work" column for the Sunday edition of the Boston Globe. Peter is author of best selling book "Essential Manners For Men", "Essential Manners For Couples" and co-authored "The Etiquette Advantage In Business" which is in its second edition.

Lizzie Post, Emily's great-great-granddaughter is the first member of the fourth generation of Posts and her book is titled "How Do You Work This Life Thing?" (Collins 2007).

Emily Post's name has become synonymous, at least in North America, with proper etiquette and manners. Nearly half a century after her death, her name is still used in titles of etiquette books.

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