Scotch-Irish-L Archives

Archiver > Scotch-Irish > 1998-02 > 0886354517


From: Bonnie M Fountain< >
Subject: Re: Step/Highland Dancing
Date: Sun, 01 Feb 1998 12:35:17 EST


On Sun, 1 Feb 1998 10:23:57 -0500 John Giacoletti
<> writes:

<snip>

>A note of interest is that the Highland sword dance which is now
>danced
>over two crossed swords placed horizontally on the floor or ground was
>formerly danced over SWORDS POINTED UP and buried to the hilt, thus to
>this
>day Highland dancers are graded on the elevation and lift to their
>dancing!
> There are extant drawings showing male Highlanders in flight over the
>upward pointed blades. Now that I can understand!!!
>
>It is now a matter of pride not to touch the swords while stepping
>from one
>quarter to another and an ill omen if the swords are rattled.
>Historically,
>the consequences of a mis-step were a wee bit more serious and
>personal!
>
>
>John Giacoletti
>
>
D.J.
>
Interesting bit of history there. Can you say when the sword dance
changed so drastically from a dangerous dance of dexterity to one of
comparative ease? My grandpa always told me that when he danced that
dance in Scotland, 1895-1900, it was dangerous and a dance of supreme
skill. Perhaps it's a good thing for me that he was somewhat proficient
at it.... I had the impression that the swords were actually held by the
dancers and whipped rapidly 'round their heads. Wrong?
B.

Bonnie M. Fountain


_____________________________________________________________________
You don't need to buy Internet access to use free Internet e-mail.
Get completely free e-mail from Juno at http://www.juno.com
Or call Juno at (800) 654-JUNO [654-5866]

This thread: