English Country Dance Diagrams for Beginners
and introduction to Minuet

Most people learn English Country Dance (ECD) figures by repetition and eventually get them right. Repetition works but is likely to miss some of the geometric pattern of figures that makes the dance look good and must be followed for everybody get to right place. Seeing diagrams might help learning the figures a little. They also can show beginners importance of dressing the lines and the set.

The diagrams use text boxes to show figures. This works well for some figures but not for all. Diagrams seem to work best for showing features of heys and forming lines. How to identify dancers is a problem, just as it is for callers, when they are not dancing from their normal positions.

Figure Diagrams

figure 8 full, double, and half
grand square four couples
heys circular, straight, cross, hey on ends
siding simple and curly siding
sheepskin hey hey from Picking Up Sticks
common figures gate, side door, lead down, cast to line of four

Dance Diagrams

Barham Down duple minor 3/2   Newcastle 4 couple sq 2/2
The Bishop triple minor 2/4   Prince William 3 couple set 4/4
Dublin Bay duple minor 12/8   Punchbowl duple minor 3/2
Duke of Kent's Waltz duple minor 3/4   St. Margaret's Hill 3 couple set 3/2
Fandango 3 couple set 6/8   Sun Assembly duple minor 2/4
Female Saylor duple minor 6/8   Wakefield Hunt triple minor 6/8
Hole in the Wall duple minor 3/2   Well Hall duple minor 3/2
Jack's Maggot duple minor 4/4        
Jamaica duple minor 2/2        
Lilli Burlero duple minor 6/8        

JavaScript pages

Minuet pages


John Chambers' ABC music collection
The music page, The ABC Tune Finder searches the index files produced by the bot program. It shows the matching tunes, and lets you retrieve them in several formats.

Definitions of Elements of English Country Dance
Definitions of steps

The Dancing Master, 1651-1728: An Illustrated Compendium By Robert M. Keller
"For this publication every dance was reduced to a code enabling comparison with similar dances. The unique or dances were identified and collected into a database where each dance printing history and other information is summarized and a facsimile of the dance and its music is included. The Index presents every item by title with links to the Ur Dance Index. The Title/Link takes the reader to a bibliography of the sources. Searches can be made on all text entries as well as on the dance coding to find instances of specific dance figures in juxtaposition with others."
1)Table of Contents (2)Title Page (3)Introduction (4)Browse Title Index (5)Browse Source Index (6)Search the Database (7)Acknowledgments(8)Data Collection (9)Bibliography (10)Sign the Guestbook (11)Order Database

English Country Dance Terms

English Country Dance Notes
This page is a collection of notes and comments by various dance caller/instructors about teaching English Country Dance to beginners.

Terms You Need to Know and Understand For English Country Dancing
Page from New York English Country Dance web site.

Colin Humes Dance Technique page

Search Page
An index of country dances and where they are published. Intended to cover English (Traditional/Ceilidh and Playford) and American Contra/Traditional Squares.

Dancetime Publications
The History of Dance: 500 Years of Social Dance from Dancetime Publications. Dancetime Publications specializes in the preservation, reconstruction and distribution of information on 500 years of our Social Dance History. Videos, DVDs, CDs, and texts are available.

Earthly Delights
The Band, CDs & Books, dance terms, dance tips, instruments, audio samples, dance costume, other dances

The English Country Dance Mailing List:
ECD, with members from the US, Canada, Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand, is a list for the discussion of all aspects, including the aesthetic and the social, of English Country Dance, historical, traditional, and contemporary. See articles about the dance, including definitions of basic terms.

History of Minuet
-The Seventeenth Century brought one of the most celebrated dances in our history... The Minuet (aka Menuet). The minuet was originally derived from the Branle of Poitou, France and was to capture every King and Queen and their court for over 150 years. The Minuet was the successor the Courante. The name Minuet comes from the small steps that are taken during the dance.

How to Dance a Minuet
18th-century dance is a complex subject. Dance technique throughout the period changed frequently as new fashions and fads swept across the land. Usually described as the latest, with the newest methods, or the most fashionable, dancing was an expression of social values. Among the upper classes it functioned as the presentation and ritualization of their status through grace of body and display of fine clothing and jewels. Among the lower, it could become competitive, enhancing ones reputation in the community. Personal ability, sophistication of taste, and availability of new material as well as social standing, region, and environment all affected dance interpretation and performance.

Minuets For Dancing
"includes music and detailed instructions for dancing Eighteenth-Century Minuet"
Charles Hendrickson and Frances Hendrickson, 24 pages, ISBN 1-877984-18-3

Minuet Step and Figures
Crossing the Line - an Intro to Baroque Court Dance Given by Rosina del Bosco Chiaro, Pennsic 2002


Dance sheets

list of dances
Dance list; name, set, meter, and key.

clothing patterns
Recreating the clothing of the Georgian era..... Fine patterns for both Ladies and Gentlemen for all manner of Clothing and Accessories. All designs to the latest Taste and most fashionable precepts

clothing & accoutrements
"the site will continue to explore topics relevant to the New England living history community"

Send corrections and updates to FHdancenet@aol.com