Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

The Campbells Are Coming

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

Progressive 2 couple dance, 2 facing 2 round room, Lady on Man's right

1- 8 All turn RH, face partner and set advancing to Balance-in-Line with Ladies in middle giving RH to each other and LH to partners
9-16 Ladies ½ turn RH into Ladies' Chain ending back in original places
17-24 All dance R&L starting by giving RH to other partner
25-32 All Adv&Ret and dance on passing other partner RSh to face oncoming couple

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

Keith Rose's Crib Diagrams

Dance Instruction Videos

The Campbells Are Coming - Scottish Country Dancing Instruction Video

Dance Information

The title of this dance, The Campbells Are Coming, comes from The Campbells Are Coming - Song associated with Clan Campbell c. 1745.

The Campbells are coming Ho-Ro, Ho-Ro!
The Campbells are coming Ho-Ro, Ho-Ro!
I lookit down to bonnie Lochleven
The Campbells are coming Ho-Ro, Ho-Ro!

The song is commonly attributed to Robert Burns, like many Scottish songs which are actually traditional or of unknown origin. Burns did write a version with some different verses, which he published in the Scots Musical Museum, a collection of Scottish folk songs (and some new songs) published between 1787 and 1803.

Clan Campbell is a Highland Scottish clan. Historically one of the largest and most powerful of the Highland clans, their lands were in Argyll and the chief of the clan became the Earl and later Duke of Argyll.

The original seat of the Clan Campbell was either Innis Chonnell Castle on Loch Awe or Caisteal na Nigheann Ruaidh on Loch Avich. The clan's power soon spread throughout Argyll, however at first the Campbells were under the domination of the Lords of Lorne, chiefs of Clan MacDougall. The MacDougalls killed the Campbell chief Cailean Mór (Colin Campbell) in 1296.

The Campbells gave support to the Crown throughout the 15th century. By the end of the 15th century the power of the Lords of the Isles (chiefs of Clan Donald) who were the Crown's most powerful rivals had been broken leaving the Campbells as the main power in the area. From this time onwards the Campbells acted as the main instrument of central authority in the area and this could be the real cause of the ancient enmity between the Campbells and the MacDonalds.

The Campbells Are Coming Song - Information Video

The Campbells Original Seat Innis Chonnell Castle
Innis Chonnell, Loch Awe, Argyll
Small Island In Loch Awe With Excellent Castle Ruins - Formerly A Stronghold Of The Campbells

Dance information licensed under this Creative Commons Licence 3.0.
Text from this original The Campbells Are Coming article on Wikisource.
Text from this original Clan Campbell article on Wikisource.
Image copyright Brian D Osborne under this Creative Commons Licence 2.0.

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