Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Elusive Muse

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

ELUSIVE MUSE (Easily Led) (J3x32) 3C set Tim Wilson

1- 8 1L dances RSh round partner to face 2L, 1s (1L leads) dance ½ Tandem reel of 3 across with 2s (LSh to 2L) ending 2s to top and 1s facing down
9-16 1s dance down (4 bars), Lady turns under Man's arm and dance up to face 3L
17-24 1s (1L leads) dance ½ Tandem reel of 3 across with 3s (RSh to 3L), 1s dance up to top and cast to 2nd place opposite sides
25-32 2s+1s+3s Set&Link for 3 twice to end 312

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


THE ELUSIVE MUSE (Or, Easily Led) 32 Bar Jig For A Three Couple Set Tim Wilson

1-4 1st woman dances around her partner giving right shoulder to finish in the center of the dance, beckoning him to follow.
5-8 1st woman, followed closely by 1st man, dances a half reel of three across the dance with 2nd couple, giving left shoulder to 2nd woman to begin. 1st couple finish ready to dance down, woman on man's right. 2nd couple finish in first place.
9-16 1st couple dance down the middle for 4 bars with nearer hands joined, on bars 13-14 1st woman dances under their raised arms and in front of her partner (as he dances below her) to switch places and face up, on bars 15-16 they dance up to third place to face 3rd woman.
17-20 1st woman, followed closely by 1st man, dances a half reel of three across the dance with 3rd couple, giving right shoulder to 3rd woman to begin.
21-24 1st couple dance up with nearer hands and cast off around 2nd couple to finish in second place on opposite side
25-32 2nd, 1st and 3rd couples set and link for three couples twice, as in bars 25-32 of Gang the Same Gate (RSCDS Bk. 36).
Ends 312 ready for a new couple to begin.

(Dance Crib compiled by Tim Wilson, March 5, 2003 - Copyright © 2003 by Tim Wilson. All rights reserved.)


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Dance Instruction Videos

Elusive Muse - Scottish Country Dancing Instruction Video

Dance Information

For Bruce Herbold on the occasion of his 50th birthday. A wonderful teacher, fellow dance devisor, and fish biologist, I had intended to surprise him with a dance on his 49th birthday but the muse was too elusive. This time he stayed just long enough. This dance pays homage to two of his fishy favorites: The Duran Ranger and The Salmonfield Poacher.

The alternative title "Easily Led" is a reference to one of his favorite teaching exercises which is to brief either the women or the men and have them lead their partners through a dance with non-verbal cues.

Recommended Music: "Calliope House" by David Richardson.

(Dance Information compiled by Tim Wilson - Copyright © 2003 by Tim Wilson. All rights reserved.)


In Greek mythology, Terpsichore "delight in dancing" was one of the nine Muses and goddess of dance and chorus. She lends her name to the word "terpsichorean" which means "of or relating to dance".

She is usually depicted sitting down, holding a lyre, accompanying the ballerinas' choirs with her music. Her name comes from the Greek words for "delight" and "dance" and is also the mother of the sirens and Parthenope.

Elusive Muse Painting Image
Elusive Muse
"Stanza Della Segnatura In The Vatican For Pope Julius II, Wall Fresco, Scene: The Parnass, Detail: Terpsichore" Raphael (1483-1520), Fresco, c. 1510-1511


Image Copyright Raphael [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

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