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John Sweeney's Dances Dances from English Dance & Song The Lovelace Manuscript
Contra and Longways dances are all Duple Minor unless stated otherwise. "Improper" is short for "First Couples Improper".

Dances from English Dance & Song

EDS 1929 EDS 1929 EDS 1929 EDS 1929

English Dance & Song and its predecessor, E.F.D.S. News, are published by the English Folk Dance & Song Society.

These pages are reproduced with kind permission of the English Folk Dance & Song Society. The dances were submitted to the magazine so as to reach as wide an audience as possible. Publishing them here will help to further that aim.

I have done my best to seek permission from any other relevant copyright holders and they are acknowledged where appropriate. If you are a copyright holder and are concerned that content for which you have not given permission is displayed, then please contact me, You must enable JavaScript to see this e-mail address. , so that I may either acknowledge you or remove the content as requested.

If you can provide any more information about any of these dances, their composers, their style, their tempo or their history, then please contact me, You must enable JavaScript to see this e-mail address. , so that I can add that information here.

Thanks to Chris Turner for lending me the old copies of EDS. For each dance I provide both the original page from the magazine and my own interpretation of the dance. Words such as "Balance", "Allemande" and "Swing" have been used by different dancing masters to mean many different things. Styles, tempos and nomenclature vary depending on the century, the country, the dance genre and countless other factors. I have tried to put the dances into words that I use when I am calling today, and to provide other hints where possible, often using other sources. Of course you are welcome to interpret the dances any way you wish. I hope you have fun calling and dancing some of them.

Dance Name Composer Formation Notes
A Nutting We Will Go
Updated April 25 2018
Traditional Longways; Proper Arches, Swing & Change.
An Adventure at Margate Killern Longways; Proper 1780 dance with Rigadoon steps.
Alan's Choice Alan Wilson Sicilian Circle Ladies' Chains and Arches: under & backup over.
All The Way To Galway
Added May 19 2018
Rich Castner Longways; Improper Easy 1950s style American contra dance.
Anniversary Reel
Updated Feb 18 2016
Jean & Ted Sanella Longways; Improper Allemandes, Chases, Leads, Circles, Stars — lots of easy moves.
Aunt Hessie's White Horse
Updated Mar 12 2018
Traditional, South Africa Circle Mixer Siding, Dosidos & Swings.
The Beauty in Tears Waltz Barry Moule Sicilian Circle Waltz time dance with zig-zag chassées into Stars.
Brian's Reel Les Wooton Sicilian Circle; Three Facing Three Circles, Heys and a Right-Hand-High-Left-Hand-Low.
Bridgwater Bay Hugh Rippon Three Couples; Longways; Proper Alternating Stars & Dip & Dives.
The Butterfly
Updated April 25 2018
Traditional Longways; Proper Arches, Swing & Change.
Canadian Breakdown Ralph Page Longways; Improper An early modern American contra.
Captain Macintosh
Updated May 18 2016
Thomas Wilson
Pat Shaw
Three Couples; Longways; Proper Two dances, one with Heys and a fast full Draw Poussette, one with diagonal Figure Eights.
Chester Races
Added May 19 2018
Preston 1791 Longways; Proper; Triple Minor or Three Couples #1s working separately with the ends of the set.
Childwall Chimes
Updated Feb 18 2016
Kathleen Freeman Longways; Improper Gallops, Heys and Circles.
Chinese Breakdown
Updated Feb 18 2016
Barry Moule Square Lots of Allemandes, Ladies' Chains & Right & Left Throughs.
Circassian Circle
Added Mar 15 2018
Traditional Sicilian Circle and Circle Mixer Easy finisher plus its antecedents.
Clark's Reel Bill Yeomans Circle Mixer Easy mixer with an opportunity for the caller or dancers to choose their own figures.
Cockleboat Jig
Updated April 8 2018
J. E. Smart Longways; Proper Circle, Lines, diagonal Figure Eights.
The College Hornpipe
Added May 6 2016
Asa Willcox, Thomas Wilson, Thomas Hardy Triple Minor Lots of different versions!
Cottagers
Added June 7 2016
Traditional Sicilian Circle North Country Ladies' Chains.
Crockett's Walk
Added May 11 2018
St, Helen's Group Longways; Proper An easy dance.
Cumberland Galopede
Added May 19 2018
Traditional, Michael Bell Longways for 4 or 5 Couples; Proper Easy dance.
Cumberland Square Eight
Added June 7 2016
Traditional Square Gallops, Stars & Baskets.
Danish Double Quadrille
Added March 23 2018
Traditional Double Sicilian Leads, Right & Lefts, Circle and Polkas.
Derry Down Derry
Added July 7 2016
Traditional Four Couples; Longways Heys, Casts, Thread the Needles with Set re-orientation.
The Devon Jig Traditional Four Couples (or Five or Six); Longways; Proper Arches & Alternating Double Casts.
Dick Witt's Circle Mixer Dick Witt Circle Mixer A version of the Lancashire Reel/Cincinnati Reel with a reverse promenade.
The Dorset Ring Dance
Added March 23 2018
Traditional Circle Very easy.
Double Lead Through
Added July 7 2016
Traditional Longways; Proper Ranting plus Swing & Change.
East Meets West Herbie Gaudreau Longways; Improper Ladies' Chains and Do Pasos.
Eightsome Reel
Added June 7 2016
Traditional Square Lots of polkaing around the set.
Elsie's Special Alan Wilson Sicilian Circle Ladies' Chains and zigzag chassées.
The Fair Quaker of Deal Playford
Pat Shaw & A.Simons
Longways; Proper Playford with Setting, Back Rings and Lead Outs.
Faithless Nancy Dawson
Updated October 3 2017
Anna Bidder Longways; Proper Easy 20-bar dance.
Farmers Quadrille Dr. A. J. Edwards Square Visiting square with Dosidos & Right & Left Throughs.
The Fiddler's Elbow Bernard Chalk Longways; Proper Contra with everyone moving independently and Same Gender Right & Left Throughs
Figure Seven Traditional Three Couples; Longways; Proper Figure Eight variations.
The Fireman's Dance
Added June 4 2016
William F Bacon (1887) Double Contra or Double Sicilian Circle Half the room galloping one way while the other half dances the other way.
The Five-Hand Reel Traditional Five Dancers in a Cross Stepping & Heys.
Frances Ann's Delight George Middleton Longways; Proper Playford style dance.
Galopade Country Dance
Added Mar 16 2018
Traditional Longways; Rifleman/Becket Interesting Promenade variation plus North Country Ladies' Chains.
Gipsy Hill Jig Irene Harcourt Three Couples; Longways; Proper Heys & Progressive Grand Chains.
The Goodfellows Ron Beeson Three Couples; Longways; Proper Weave the Lines, Gallops & Swings.
Haste to the Wedding (Sussex & Dorset)
Added June 4 2016
Traditional Longways; Proper "Pop" the dancer through the arch.
Hayden's Wheel Ernest R. Jessop Sicilian Circle Fun dance that switches between one big circle and a Sicilian Circle,
Hillside Reel Dulcie King Longways; Improper Flowing stars, allemandes and heys.
Hot Time In The Old Town Tonight
Added Apr 4 2018
Traditional; Keith Uttley Square Popular 1950s square dance.
Hull's Victory
Updated Mar 15 2018
Douglas Kennedy Longways; Proper Early American contra with lots of Waves.
The Huntsman's Chorus
Updated Feb 18 2016
Traditional Longways; Whole Set — Eight or More Couples; Proper Lines Gallops, Arches and Casts.
I've Been To Harlem
Added June 4 2016
Richard Chase Circle Mixer Simple 16 bar dance for when you have too many men or ladies.
Jack Pudding
Updated March 30 2018
Playford Three Couples Longways or in a Triangle Three figures and choruses with countless interpretations.
John Brown's Body
Added March 28 2018
Muriel Davies Square An easy square dance.
Johnson's Special
Added April 1 2018
Rickey Holden Longways; Improper An easy American contra dance.
The Jubilee Thomas L. Cook Longways; Improper A contra dance with lots of Spin the Tops.
Jubilee Triumph Peter Spensley Three Couple; Longways; First Couple Improper Triumphal Arches over the ladies.
Kendal Ghyll Traditional Three Couple; Longways; Proper Grimstock Heys with Handkerchiefs.
Kennet Circle Dance Pauline Wilson Circle Mixer Easy Circle Mixer.
The Kentish Ramble Keith Uttley Square Rant; Intersecting Heys. North Country Ladies' Chains.
Kettle Drum
Updated Aug 12 2016
Playford, Mabel Clayden Square Multiple interpretations of incomprehensible words!
Kilham Capers Kathleen Mitchell Four Couples; Longways; Proper Circles, Stars, Double Cast, Lines & Gallops.
La Russe Quadrille
Added July 7 2016
Traditional Square Swinging, visiting and Dip 'n' Dive.
The Lacemaker Geoffrey Mendham Three Couples; Longways; #2s Improper Grand Chain with Arming 1 & 1/2 instead of Pull Bys.
Ladies' Fancy David Anderson (1886) Longways; Proper Baskets, Leads, Stars, Polkas.
The Lass of Richmond Hill
Updated February 21 2018
Kate Riley Longways; Proper Leads and Crosses.
Loxley Figure Eight Traditional Three Couples; Longways; Proper Figure Eights & Arches.
The Madley Figure Eight Traditional Three Couples; Longways; Proper Casting into Figure Eights.
Maidens' Carousel
Added March 28 2018
Jack Atkinson Square The ladies get to sit on the men's joined arms!
Meg Merrilees
Added June 7 2016
Maud Karpeles Longways; Improper Easy early American contra.
Moll In The Wad
Added March 28 2018
Sylvia Thursfield Longways; Proper Easy dance with a Double Cast in Gay Gordon's Hold.
Money Musk
Added March 28 2018
Bicky McLain Longways; Proper; Triple Minor A very popular contra with stepping in Head & Side lines.
Monks Orchard Rant Ron Jones Longways; Improper Arches, Gypsys and single file Promenades with rant stepping.
The New England Jig
Updated April 30 2018
Vic Smeltzer Longways; Improper Baskets and arches.
A New Horyezon Millicent Robertson Three Couple; Longways; Proper A Playford style dance with a Morris Hey.
Newlywed's Reel Jean & Ted Sanella Longways; Proper Ocean Waves & Single File Promenades.
Ninepins
Added March 15 2018
Traditonal Square with a ninth person in the middle Easy chaotic fun.
Nottingham Reel Paul Mee Longways; Improper Stars, Ladies' Chains & Dip & Dive.
The Nova Scotia
The Nova Scotian
Maurice Hennigar Longways; Improper One of the first contras in a clearly contemporary style.
The Peterchurch Figure Eight Traditional Three Couples; Longways; Proper Easy dance with Figure Eights.
Princess' Country Dance David Anderson Longways; Proper Waves, Ladies' Chains & Polka to progress.
Pussy Cat Gary Cohen Square Australian 1950's Square Dance.
The Rifleman
Added March 16 2018
Traditional Longways; Rifleman/Becket Interesting Promenade variation plus North Country Ladies' Chains.
Saint Giles' Gate Norris W. Winstone Longways; Proper Contest winning dance in Playford style.
The Saint Helen's Jig Vic Smeltzer Longways; Improper Ocean Waves & Assisted Casts.
Sibyl's Roundabout Les Wootton Circle Mixer Individual Chassées and lots of Alamo Waves.
Sicilian Circles
Added April 6 2018
Traditional Sicilian Circle A sample, plus the concept of making new dances in this formation.
The Siege of Ennis
Added April 6 2018
Traditional Mescolanze A variation of The Tempest.
Silver Celebration
Updated September 6 2017
Anne Clayton Longways; Four Couples; Proper Circles, Casts & Figure Eights.
Six Reel
Added June 7 2016
Traditional Square of Trios Lots of polkaing around the set.
Six & Sixpenny Rant University of Manchester Folk Dance Society Three Couples; Longways; Proper Orbits, Figure Eights and an interesting progression.
Spanish Waltz
Added July 7 2016
Traditional Square or Sicilian Circle Simple repetitive waltz-time dance with many variations.
Speed the Plough (American Version)
Added July 7 2016
Traditional Longways; Improper Early American contra.
Square Dancing
Added June 7 2016
Helen Kennedy Square Divide the Ring, Indian File & The Star.
Step and Fetch Her
Added March 16 2018
Sam Bennett Longways; Proper Easy dance, plus an older version with the two men fighting over the ladies.
The Stockton Long Dance Dave Turner Longways; Proper Circle, Leads, Ladies' Chains & a Right & Left Through.
Swing Your Opposite Lady
Added March 28 2018
Maud Karpeles Square An easy mixer with lots of swings.
The Swedish Dance
Updated June 11 2016
Traditional Longways or Sicilian Circle in Trios An easy dance with a Polka Swing.
The Tempest / La Tempête
Added April 6 2018
Traditional Mescolanze Easy moves in a Four Facing Four Formation, with many variations.
Three Meet
Updated March 16 2018
Traditional Longways or Sicilian Circle in Trios An easy dance with a Polka Swing.
Three Reel
Added June 7 2016
Traditional Three dancers in a line Step, dance a hey, repeat until exhausted.
Timber Salvage Reel
Added April 1 2018
Ralph Page Longways; Improper An easy American contra dance.
Tom Pate
Added April 6 2018
Traditional Mescolanze A variation of The Tempest.
A Trip to Richmond
Updated February 21 2018
Kate Riley Longways; Proper Leads and Crosses.
Tuesday Child Brian Jones Longways; Proper Half Figure Eights, Ladies' Chains & Down the Halls.
Varsity Rant University of Manchester Folk Dance Society Three Couples; Longways; Proper Orbits, Figure Eights and an interesting progression.
The Washington Quickstep
Updated Oct 26 20176
Traditional Longways Standard figures; lots of variations.
The Waves of Tory
Updated Mar 12 2018
Traditional Five Couples; Longways; Proper Dip & Dive.
Ways of the World Vermont 1794 Longways; Triple Minor; Proper Grimstock Heys and Eyes-Only Right & Left Throughs.
The Weobley Figure Eight Traditional Three Couples; Longways; Proper Figure Eights with the man and lady following different Figure Eight patterns.
The Wessex Assembly Jack Pragnell Square Playford style dance with an Open Star Promenade chorus.
Will Kemp's Entry into Norwich Norris W. Winstone Longways; Proper Contest winning dance in Playford style.
Winster Galop
Updated May 20 2016
Traditional Three to Six Couples; Longways; Proper Double Cast & Shoulder-Hold Swing.
Witch Doctor
Updated Sep 12 2016
Australian Square Australian 1950's Square Dance.
The Yellow Rose of Texas
Updated Feb 18 2016
Ron Smedley Square Mixer Circles, Promenades and Chains.


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