Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

The Gypsy Shawl

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

The Gypsy Shawl
Jig 4 x 32 bars 4 Couple Repeat 4 Couple Set Longwise Set

  1-8   All join hands on the sides, 4s join free hands, 1M2M make an arch and, with 1L leading, all (except 1M) dance under the arch to finish in places, retaining hold;

  9-16 1L2L make an arch and, with 1M leading, all (except 1L) dance under the arch to finish in places, releasing hold;

17-20 1s2s 3s4s right hands across;

21-24 1s2s 3s4s left hands across;

25-28 1s take both hands and slip to 4th place WHILE 2s3s4s step up;

29-32 2s 3s 4s 1s turn by the left.

(MAXICRIB. Scottish country dancing instructions compiled by Reuben Freemantle)

Dance Notes

29-32 Original instructions have turn by the right but by the left makes a better transition to bar 1 of the next repeat.

Keith Rose's Crib Diagrams

Dance Information

Also see the derivative dance The Gypsy Shawl (3-Couple Version) by Anon, adapted for 3 couples by Reuben Freemantle, which is slightly slower and so more suitable at a ceilidh.

As is typical of ceilidh dances attributed to that prolific deviser, Anon, there are local variants of this dance, all having the characteristic bars 1-16 and sometimes with a slightly different name, as does The Gypsy Thread, though which is the original and which the derivative is not clear.

Gypsy Shawl
Gypsy Shawls
"Two Gypsies" Francisco Iturrino (1864-1928), Oil On Canvas, c. 1901-1903

Additional search terms: Ceilidh Dance.
Image copyright Francisco Iturrino (1864-1928) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

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