Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

The Battle Of The Shirts

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

THE BATTLE OF THE SHIRTS (R4x32) 4C set Janet Cook Imperial Book 5
3s and 4s start on opposite sides

1- 8 1s and 4s dance ½ Figs of 8 round 2s/3s and end between 2s/3s in lines across, 1s+2s advance and retire as 4s+3s retire and advance
9-16 All dance reels of 4 across 1s and 4s end in middle BtoB facing corners
17-24 1s and 4s dance 'Hello-Goodbye' setting and on bars 23-24 end with 1M and 4M crossing RH to face out (1M on L side, 4M on M side) while others pas-de-basque turning around as 4L ends facing down between 2s and 1L facing up between 3s
25-32 1M and 4M followed by partners cast to right around corner (3M/2M) into centre, loop round to right and cast around next corner (3L/2L) then cross to other side. 24(1)(3)

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

Keith Rose's Crib Diagrams

Dance Instruction Videos

The Battle Of The Shirts - Scottish Country Dancing Instruction Video

Dance Information

The name of this dance, The Battle Of The Shirts, is a reference to the famous battle between Highlander Clans on July 15, 1544.

The Battle of the Shirts (also the Battle of Kinloch-Lochy) was a Scottish clan battle that took place in 1544 in the Great Glen, at the northern end of Loch Lochy.

The Clan Macdonald of Clanranald and their allies the Clan Cameron fought the Clan Fraser and men from Clan Grant. The battlefield has been included and protected by Historic Scotland in their Inventory of Historic Battlefields in Scotland.

Clan tradition of the clans involved and all histories written since the period have stated that the name was derived from the fact that the day was so hot that both sides threw off their chainmail hauberks, fighting in their shirts. However, some have postulated in recent times that Blàr na Léine is a corruption of Blàr na Lèana 'the Field of the Swampy Meadow'.

The Battle Of The Shirts, Loch Lochy
Northern End Of Loch Lochy

Dance information licensed under this Creative Commons Licence 3.0.
Text from this original Battle Of The Shirts article on Wikipedia.
Image copyright W F Millar under this Creative Commons Licence 2.0.

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