The Southern Gentleman, a Dissection, Part One

Due to the sheer importance of this topic, we will be breaking it down in four parts to ensure proper coverage of each element.

The elements of a southern gentleman can be dissected and broken down into the four main elements. First we have the most important element, the moustache. The second most important is the accent, also known as a drawl. Coming in third is the wardrobe. The final element of a southern gentleman is his manners, charm, and demeanor which will be referred to as his southern “mojo”. Let’s begin.

Perceptions of a Gentleman

We all know that the ultimate image of a southern gentleman was Rhett Butler in Gone With the Wind. He was the kind of character that women wanted to be with and men wanted to be. A man’s man who was definitely raised by a good mama and probably originally from the South of 20 area! He was, at the same time, tough and tender, protecting and loving. The next most fitting image that will pop into most people’s minds is Val Kilmer’s portrayal of our hometown gentleman, John Henry “Doc” Holliday.

Although no angel, the good Dentist maintained the majority of the elements of a southern gentleman, including the moustache, wardrobe, and most definitely the accent. Now it is undeniable that he had some mojo, but it had a touch of darkness around the edges, but don’t we all? Just like that genteel homicidal southern gentleman from Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, southern gentlemen are like everyone else in that they are not perfect. They have character flaws, but they flaw with such style and manners, that it almost distracts from their vices.

A Real Southern Gentleman is Mustachioed

It is a proven scientific fact that 9 out of 10 southern gentlemen will have a fabulous mustache. You can’t argue with science. While there is much debate of exactly what type of mustache is deemed best for use on a southern gentleman, we support going in the style of Val Kilmer’s Doc Holliday or Rhett Butler. Few southern gentlemen can pull of a feat such as going full “Salvador Dali” in their facial hair representation, but if you feel your mojo will support it then my all means where that big, twisty monstrosity with your head held high! We would like to note that for the most part southern gentlemen stay away from bushy styles such as those worn by Sam Elliot or Wilfred Brimley. Another example of the many styles that are appropriate can be studied in the many mustaches of Daniel Day-Lewis, although he hails from across the pond, he nails the look of a southern gentleman in more ways than we can count and should be your go to guide for southern gentleman facial style. He is basically a walking infographic for southern mustache guidelines.

The mustache of a southern gentleman is one of the tools he uses to establish a slightly subdued flair that doesn’t assault the senses, yet weaves them into the very fabric of the people in their lives. Some choose to add twists or curls to the end of their mustaches, but we have to issue a warning that too much of this can begin to appear a bit fancy and southern gentlemen may be many things, but fancy ain’t one of them. Most southern gentlemen are of the belief that if God intended them to shave their mustaches, he would not have made them so glorious and attractive and I must say we at South of 20 are in full agreement. In the next installment of Dissection of a Southern Gentleman, we will be exploring the mesmerizing rise and fall of the accent of a southern gentleman.

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