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The Morris Book, Part 1 A History of Morris Dancing, With a Description of Eleven Dances as Performed by the Morris-Men of England   By:

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E text prepared by Michael Ciesielski and Online Distributed Proofreading Team.

[Illustration: MORRIS DANCERS, AS DEPICTED IN AN OLD STAINED GLASS WINDOW IN A HOUSE AT BETLEY, STAFFORDSHIRE.]

THE MORRIS BOOK

A HISTORY OF MORRIS DANCING

WITH A DESCRIPTION OF ELEVEN DANCES AS PERFORMED BY THE MORRIS MEN OF ENGLAND

BY CECIL J. SHARP

AND HERBERT C. MACILWAINE

IN TWO PARTS. PART I.

LONDON NOVELLO AND COMPANY, LTD. 1907.

This Book is issued in connection with "Morris Dance Tunes," by the same Authors

(Sets I. and II., price 2/ each.)

LONDON: NOVELLO AND COMPANY, LTD.

TO OUR FRIENDS AND PUPILS

The Members of the Espérance Girls' Club,

CUMBERLAND MARKET, N.W.

PREFACE.

Besides other friends, too numerous for individual mention, who have given us able and willing help in the writing of this book, we desire to tender especial thanks to the following: To the Lady Isabel Margesson, by means of whose kind assistance we were enabled to note certain of the dances herein described; to Miss Florence Warren, whose help was simply invaluable; and to the Rev. S. Baring Gould, for permission to reproduce in our text the old woodcut of the historic Kemp, who danced the Morris steps all the way from London to Norwich.

CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION HISTORICAL Bibliography MORRIS DANCE TUNES Notes on Morris Tunes THE DANCE The Morris Step Diagrams of Morris Steps (explaining Notation marks) Positions, and Change of Position (Diagrams) Evolutions Down and Back; and Up and Back The Chain (Diagrams) Cross over (Diagrams) Back to Back (Diagrams) Go and come The Ring Steps in Foregoing Evolutions The Jump (explaining Notation marks, &c.) The Hands (movements described) The Call Length of Dances (how to shorten or extend) SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR VARIOUS DANCES: BEAN SETTING To Form Ring (Diagrams) Dibbing COUNTRY GARDENS Notation of Hand striking CONSTANT BILLY Diagram of Stick tapping RIGS O'MARLOW Diagrams of Stick tapping BLUFF KING HAL Description of step, and manner of dancing HOW D'YE DO? Description, and note on singing SHEPHERD'S HEY Instructions for Stick tapping and Diagram of Hand clapping On holding sticks NOTATION (Detailed instructions for all the Dances described): BEAN SETTING (Stick Dance) LAUDNUM BUNCHES (Corner Dance) COUNTRY GARDENS (Handkerchief Dance) CONSTANT BILLY (Stick Dance) TRUNKLES (Corner Dance) RIGS O'MARLOW (Stick Dance) BLUFF KING HAL (Handkerchief Dance) HOW D'YE DO? (Corner Dance) SHEPHERD'S HEY (Stick or Handkerchief Dance) BLUE EYED STRANGER (Handkerchief Dance) MORRIS OFF

INTRODUCTION.

We have been drawn to the publication of tunes and description of the old English Morris, not primarily for the information of the archæologist and scholar, but to help those who may be disposed to restore a vigorous and native custom to its lapsed pre eminence.

Whether we have erred in believing that there exists to day a wide and keen desire for that restoration will be plainly shown in the reception and the result of our endeavour. How we ourselves came by the belief in that desire is easily told.

The idea that the Morris dance might once again be known amongst us, in town and countryside, as the ordered expression of a national spirit, was given to us in this wise. One of us it is not by now too much to claim had acquired an enthusiasm for Folk music, and a certain knack of finding it where it still survived in the agèd memories of the peasantry, and of transcribing and preserving it when found. The other had also his knack of passing on the music that pleased him to susceptible and willing juniors, and of making them to perform the same. In a happy hour the collector with his treasury and the teacher, pining for some fresher and sincerer melodies, met together. The "Folk Songs from Somerset" were given to those working girls of London town to whom this book is dedicated... Continue reading book >>




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