[SCA-Dance] Documenting Argeers for an A&S competition

White, John white at drexel.edu
Mon Jan 23 10:13:38 EST 2012

>From:  Dani Zweig [dani at pobox.com]

>> However, there isn't really any way to tell from that complexity just how
>> people had been doing ECD, nor when it was a fresh, new style.
>We know quite a bit about that.  People were certainly doing what they
>called country dances in the sixteenth century.  But I would advise against
>going down this road with documentation.  This is the "people ate chicken
>in period" approach to document Kentucky Fried Chicken.
>The challenge in this case is to document Argeers to period, not to
>document ECD to period.
>- Dani

Without being pedantic, my statement wasn't whether or not ECD is period, nor
whether there was country dance pre-1600.  The statement was that we cannot
judge from the *complexity* present in 1650 how long people had been doing the
style of dance called 'country dance' *in* 1650, nor when it was a new style.

We have popular song/dance titles that are similar or the same in the 16th and 17th 
centuries.  We have song tunes used in the mid-17th century that were created
in the late 16th.  For example, Lightly Love/Light o' Love is from the late 1590s
(in Shakespeare) and the dance tune Light o' Love is from even earlier: 
these match a dance choreography written down in or before 1649 (in
Lovelace) - none of that makes the two the same dance; neither can it be proven
that they are not (though some analyzing of the context of Shakespeare's 
usage might preclude the kidnapping-style Lovelace country dance being what
the Bard was referring to).

It is, all in all, a tough nut to crack.

        \\Dafydd Cyhoeddwr

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