# Circular Sets

It is convenient in Scottish Country Dancing to classify, as*Circular sets*, all forms of

*Square set*and

*Triangular set*(including those with extra

*Dancers*inside

*The set*), the

*Celtic brooch set*and those in which the

*Partner groups*are explicitly disposed on the sides of a pentagon or hexagon and so on. All have a fixed number of

*Partner groups*. Most of the pages in this section are concerned with

*Circular sets*for

*Couples*, which are by far the most numerous.

Note that *Large circular sets*, which are for variable numbers of *Couples*, are classified as *Round the room sets*.

Almost all *Circular sets* for *Couples* are formed by the *Dancers* being evenly spaced in a circle with the *Men Standing* on the left of their *Partners*. The *Top couple* of *The set* is nearest to *The music*. *Couples* are numbered clockwise starting from the *Top* and followed by any *Couples* inside *The set*. A few *Circular set* Scottish Country Dances, most notably those with one or more extra *Couples Inside The set*, involve *Progression*; if so, the *Progression* leaves a new *Couple* or *Couples Inside The set* to lead the *Repeat*. More commonly, *Circular set* dances are performed once through only; however, these may have a Chorus at the beginning and the end with a *Dancer* or a *Couple* or more than one *Couple* leading repeated sequences in between, usually without *Progression*, as for example in The Eightsome Reel.

Aside from the rare

*Progressive sets*(in which

*The set*breaks up into its individual

*Partner groups*which combine with other

*Partner groups*to form

*The set*ready for the next

*Repeat*),

*Circular sets*are completely independent of each other and so could, in principle, be disposed randomly throughout the ballroom; however, they are normally arranged in lines

*Up and down*the ballroom, much as are

*Longwise sets*.

At a Ball, the *Top man* in each *Set* should check that his *Set* has sufficient *Couples* (or whichever other *Partner group* is appropriate); if not, he should indicate how many more are required to complete his *Set*. He should establish the size and correct shape of *The set* if necessary, preferably by all *Taking hands* in a circle; if the ballroom is crowded, he should adjust the diameter of his *Set* and the space between his and the adjacent *Sets* to a fair share of the amount available, moving his *Set* as necessary. When performing a *Square set* dance which involves *Dancers Leading Out* of the *Top* and *Bottom* or *Out* of the *Sides*, it may be advantageous in a crowded ballroom to rotate *The set* through 90^{o}, so that the *Top couple* is in what would normally be *2nd Place*; this avoids competition for space when *Leading Out*. Ideally, the decision should be made by the MC but the *Top man* in one *Set* can safely do it if no other adjacent *Set* has changed.

A few

*Square sets*are for

*Partner groups*other than

*Couples*or for multiple

*Couples*on each side; these are covered on the main

*Square set*page.

One format for *3 Couples*, the *Celtic brooch set*, is more genuinely triangular than the *Triangular set* though the *Dancers* are not all in one circle; the *Ladies* are equally spaced around a large circle, *Facing In* towards their *Partners* in a smaller circle *Facing Out*.

## Links To Pages Related To 'Circular Sets'

Types Of SetsSize Of The Set

Room Capacity

Longwise Sets

Circular Sets

4-couple Square Set

Triangular Set

Celtic Brooch Set

5-Couple Square Set

6-Couple Square Set

2-Couple Square Set

Other Circular Sets

Other Sets

Music For Scottish Country Dances

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**Circular Sets**' page