Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Argyll Strathspey

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

ARGYLL STRATHSPEY (S8x32) 3C (4C set) Roy Goldring RSCDS Book 35

1- 8 1s+2s+3s ½ turn RH, twirl and dance out to opposite sides and repeat back to place
9-16 1s+2s+3s circle 6H round and back (1s end in centre facing down and 3s in centre facing up)
17-24 1s+3s dance R&L (up and down) and end back on own sides
25-32 1s+2s dance the Tournée:
 1s+2s dance into prom hold (Men with partner on right, 1s face Men's side and 2s Ladies' side), couples ½ wheel anticlockwise and Men turn Ladies into middle, both couples turn 1½ times (2s RH, 1s LH) and dance out to places

(MINICRIB. Dance crib compiled by Charles Upton, Deeside Caledonian Society, and his successors)

Keith Rose's Crib Diagrams

Dance Instruction Videos

Argyll Strathspey - Scottish Country Dancing Instruction Video

Dance Information

Seems like a great Tartan Ball program again this year, but what's this? The Argyll Strathspey? Oh no! Isn't that the one that includes that Tournée thingy?... the formation that many of us always manage to forget between its somewhat infrequent appearances?

Who devised that dance? Ah! It's that Roy Goldring again; the guy from West Yorkshire! But let's forget about the tournée for the moment, and think about Argyll, that region of the west coast of Scotland that also seems to cover a fair chunk of the Inner Hebrides. And if we think about Argyll, we cannot help but also focus on the Clan Campbell.

Is it Argyll or Argyle? Well, the latter is apparently more archaic and may have more to do with hosiery, but whichever, either is easier to say or pronounce than the Gaelic version Earra Ghaidheal, which derives from "Coast of Gaels". Before leaving the Argyle hosiery mention, it needs saying that the Argyle pattern is supposed to reflect the tartan of Clan Campbell. See how all this is nicely coming together?

Up until 1975, Argyll was a County (Argyllshire?). Historically, its county town was Inveraray, at which you will arrive soon enough if you ever have the experience of careering downhill west-bound from Rest And Be Thankful and around the windy end of Loch Fyne on the A83. Talk about SCD names galore! But, What about those Campbells?

Dominant in Argyll since the 13th century, and once one of the most powerful families in Scotland, the Campbell Clan could be said to have transformed Argyll into no less than a Duchy. As Clan Chief, the Duke of Argyll's family seat is located at Inveraray Castle. The Campbells have a long history over the centuries of battling in one cause or another and, of course, were considered by some to be a murderous bunch following the infamous massacre of a large number of MacDonalds at Glencoe due to a long running feud. But enough of this warlike stuff of which Scotland's history is replete.

Now, about that Tournée again! Do think carefully as you work your way through the Argyll Strathspey. It's worth it.

The Barry Pipes Canon 040- February, 2011.

(Dance information from set and link, RSCDS Toronto Newsletter - What's In A Name? The Barry Pipes Canon 2005-2018, reproduced here with kind permission. Copyright Barry Pipes. All rights reserved)

Argyll is a region of western Scotland corresponding with most of the part of ancient Dál Riata that was located on the island of Great Britain, and in a historical context can be used to mean the entire western seaboard between the Mull of Kintyre and Cape Wrath.

Argyll - Information Video

Argyll Strathspey Crib
Argyll Strathspey Crib - Before Minicrib

Dance information licensed under this Creative Commons Licence 3.0.
Text from this original Argyll article on Wikipedia.
Image copyright Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary.

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