Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Men's Chain

In Scottish Country Dancing, the Men's chain Figure is much rarer than the Ladies chain to which it is closely similar; the Men's and Ladies' movements of the Ladies' chain, and left and right for Casting, Crossing and Turning, are interchanged.

Like the Ladies' chain, this Figure is for two adjacent Couples (not necessarily Partners) on Opposite sides of a 4 couple square set or of a Longwise set; the "Couples" Start with each Lady, ideally Facing Out, on the right of a Man Facing In, as they would for the Ladies' chain but with roles reversed.

The whole Figure takes 8 bars. On the first 2 bars, the Men Cross By the left, each Finishing Facing Out in the Opposite Lady's Position While each Lady Casts clockwise to Face In in the adjacent Man's Position. On the next 2 bars, the Dancers Turn halfway By the right on the Sides, the Ladies Finishing back in their Starting Positions, Facing Out, the Men on Opposite Sides, Facing In. These 4 bars are repeated from the new Positions and so all return to their Starting Positions, the Ladies Finishing with a Polite turn so that all Finish Facing In unless the subsequent Figure requires otherwise.

Here are examples of those Scottish Country Dances for which we have instructions on this site and in which the term, Men's chain, either appears explicitly or is implied; note that for a common term these will be a small selection; for a rare term, these may be all that exist:

Corrievreckan (Boswell)
Gaelforce Wind
Joan's Jig
MacLeod's Tables (Haynes)
Mr Morison
Ray Milbourne
Rising Sun
Speirs Bruce
Toyboys Of Toowoomba
Uncle Isaac

Dance Video Clip Which Demonstrates Men's Chain

Men's Chain Video Clip

Links To Pages Related To 'Chains'


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