[SCA-Dance] Early tudor dance

Barbara Webb bwebb at inf.ed.ac.uk
Fri Apr 25 08:04:12 EDT 2008

I just came across the following interesting reference to an early Tudor 
dance description in "The Early Stuart Masque: Dance, Costume, and Music"
Barbara Ravelhofer (2006):

"A single choreography survives in an early Tudor moot book of Lincoln's 
Inn, glossed as 'the old measure' by a seventeenth-century hand:
  The howe of the howse [margin: or the old measure]
  Fyrst half turn and undo yt agayn, flower, iij forth, the fyrst man and
  second folowe, flower and roll into other placys, hole turn, flower, and
  then roll into other placys.[44]"

The footnote [44] gives the source as CUL MA L1.1.11 fol.33r, in a hand 
from the time of Henry VII or VIII, transcribed in J.H.Baker (1996) 'A 
catalogue of English Legal Manuscripts in Cambridge University library'. 
It also mentions that a 15th century carol (Nowell Nowell) proceeds the 
dance description, and gives 1390 and 1491 literary references to 
"houe daunce"/"hovedaunce".

Anyone else come across this? Not obvious how to reconstruct it but 
fascinating resemblance to the Gresley descriptions.


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