The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #157043 Message #3703876
Posted By: MGM·Lion
24-Apr-15 - 02:41 PM
Thread Name: What exactly is Morris dancing?
Subject: RE: What exactly is Morris dancing?
Google "Morris Dancing on You Tube" and you will find many examples. You will note that costumes and instruments vary, but have much in common. The men dance sometimes with sticks they knock rhythmically together, sometimes with a pair of handkerchifs which they wave as they dance. The music [generally fiddle, concertina, or accordion] is enhanced by the rhythms provided by the bells the dancers often wear at the knee. One dancer will often be dressed as a woman, known as the Betty; another will wear a hobby-horse costume. There are many such conventions and characteristics. Have a look.
Never been a dancer myself, BTW; but have always loved to watch it, and of course have had many friends who were morrismen.
There is a 17C anonymous painting of The Thames At Richmond in the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge which shows among those present a group of morrismen [hobbyhorse and all]. Here is a link to it --