Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

The Quinary Strathspey

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

The Quinary Strathspey (S5x32) 5D set Lewis N Derrick 1993
This is a longwise dance for five single dancers in any gender combination.

1-4 Joining nearer hands, the 1st and 3rd dancers and the 2nd and 4th dancers set and link
5-8 The same dancers repeat bars 1-4 back to original places
9-12 Dancing diagonally across the set to begin, the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th dancers dance half diagonal rights and lefts
13-16 The 3rd, 2nd, 1st and 5th dancers dance half diagonal rights and lefts
17-20 The 4th, 5th, 1st and 2nd dancers dance half diagonal rights and lefts
21-24 The 1st, 5th, 4th and 3rd dancers dance half diagonal rights and lefts to end 23451
25-28 Retaining left hands, the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 1st dancers dance left hands across
29-32 The 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th dancers dance right hands across ending on sidelines

Repeat four more times from new positions each time

(Dance crib compiled by the deviser, Lewis N Derrick 2020)


Dance Notes

At the beginning and end of each repetition there are three dancers on the women's side of the set (first, third and fifth places) and two dancers on the men's side (second and fourth places) spaced, but not too widely, as if they each had a partner opposite them.
5
      4
3
      2
1
(Top)

On each repetition the 1st dancer ends in fifth place while everyone else zig-zags up the dance one place, 5 becomes 4, 4 becomes 3, 3 becomes 2 and 2 becomes 1.

Bars 1-4: The set and link is as normal, the person on the right casts up or down, the person on the left dances up or down.

Bars 9-12: The half diagonal rights and lefts are always right hands across the set and left hands on the sides. The dancers in second, third and fourth places dance in all the rights and lefts, while those in first and fifth places stand out alternate repetitions. There are no polite turns.

(Dance Notes by the deviser, Lewis N Derrick)


Keith Rose's Crib Diagrams


Dance Information

Quinary means fivefold, by or in fives, or with five variables!

Suggested tune: Cupar Barn Dance (J. Urquhart).

Devised 1993, first published electronically 2020.

Copyright 1993, 2020 Lewis N. Derrick.


Quinary (base-5 or pental) is a numeral system with five as the base. A possible origination of a quinary system is that there are five fingers on either hand.

Dance information from The Quinary Suite Of Scottish Country Dances, reproduced here with the kind permission of the deviser, Lewis N Derrick.
Dance information licensed under this Creative Commons Licence 3.0.
Text from this original Quinary article on Wikipedia.

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