Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Ten Ladies Dancing

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

Ten Ladies Dancing
Susan Johnston
Strathspey   5 x 32 bars   5 Couple Repeat   5 Couple Set   Lengthwise Set

  1-4   1s 3s cross and cast;

  5-6   2s1s4s3s5s take hands on the sides and set facing partners;

  7-8   1s 3s turn ¾ by the left, finishing on the centre line, Ls above Mn;

  9-12 2s1L 1M4s3L 3M5s right hands across;

13-16 2s1M 1L4s3M 3L5s left hands across, finishing on own sides, facing in and to the right;

17-20 1s 3s dance half figures of eight across, around first corners;

21-24 1s 3s dance half figures of eight across, around partners' first corners;

25-28 2s1s4s3s5s advance and retire;

29-32 1s 3s turn by the right and cast, finishing 2s4s1s5s3s.

(MAXICRIB, Scottish country dancing instructions compiled by Reuben Freemantle)

Dance Notes

17-18 1M3L give right shoulders.

17-24 The successive half figures of eight across are known in the deviser's group as the "paperclip".

21-22 1L3M give right shoulders.

Dance Information

In the most commonly accepted version of the song, The Twelve Days of Christmas, it should strictly be "Ten Lords A-Leaping" and "Nine Ladies Dancing"; however, there are many different versions and the recording by Perry Como has "Ten Ladies Dancing". This title is a recognition that, for many Scottish Country Dancing groups, a 5-couple set may contain only female dancers.

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