Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Brigs Of Ayr

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

BRIGS OF AYR (S3x32) 3C set Jean Attwood Alexander Book 4

1- 8 All set, turn 2H to face up, dance up and cast to 321
9-16 3s+1s dance double Fig of 8 round 2s (3s cast, 1s cross up)
17-24 1s dance in and cast up to 2nd place, 1s circle 3H round to left (1L with 3s at top and 1M with 2s)
25-28 3s and 2s join nearer hands and make arches and advance and retire (up/down set) while 1s dance under arches (1L up through 3s, 1M down through 2s) and cast to right into 2nd place own side
29-32 1s circle 3H round to right (1M with 3s at top and 1L with 2s) 312

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

Keith Rose's Crib Diagrams

Dance Information

The title of this dance, Brigs Of Ayr, comes from The Brigs Of Ayr - Poem written by Robert Burns in 1786.

...The Sprites that owre the Brigs Of Ayr preside...

The Old Bridge of Ayr (Auld Brig o' Ayr) is a stone arch bridge that crosses the River Ayr with four arches, mentioned in the royal charter from the year 1236. In this, however, it is doubtless not the present bridge. This was built between 1470 and 1525. As early as 1597 the bridge condition was described as ruinous, whereupon the northernmost arch collapsed in 1732. The building has been repaired several times, most recently between 1907 and 1910.

Because of the first bridges poor condition a second bridge was built in 1788 designed by Robert Adam and the old bridge became a pedestrian crossing.

These two bridges are commemorated in this poem which describes an argument between the two bridges, with the Auld Bridge predicting that it shall remain standing long after the New Bridge has gone.

Burns was proved right when the New Bridge had to be demolished after a storm in 1879 and rebuilt. The Old Bridge of Ayr is still standing.

Old Bridge Of Ayr
Auld Brig O' Ayr Seen From The New Bridge Of Ayr
13th Century Cobbled Bridge Crossing The River Ayr In The Centre Of Ayr, Scotland.

Dance information licensed under this Creative Commons Licence 3.0.
Text from this original Old Bridge Of Ayr article on Wikisource.
Image copyright Stephen McKay under this Creative Commons Licence 2.0.

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