Mall Peatly ~ Sharp

Mall Peatly ~ Williams Mall Peatly ~ Sharp

Mall Peatly ~ Sharp is an English Country Dance. It was published by John Playford (website) in 1670 in The Dancing Master, 4th ed.. It was interpreted by Cecil Sharp (website) in 1922 and published in The Country Dance Book (Part 6). It is a proper 4 Couple Longways dance. There is no progression in this dance. The dance lasts 84 bars.

Playford writes:
Lead up all a D. forward and back That again First man set to the first wo. then to the second, and Hey with the two last we. and stay in the last place, the last man at the same time setting to the two last we. Hey with the two first, and stay in first place This back to your places

Sides all That again This as before, the first and last we. doing it as the men did before

Arms all That again The first man and wo. do this as before, and stay in the last place Or do this back again, cast off and meet below

Lovelace writes:

You must first lead up twice, and then the first man, and last man set to theire owne woemen, and then to theire next; (as with the first man to the 2 woemen; and the last man to the 3rd woeman,) and then the first man dances the Heyes with the 2 lowest woemen, and the lowest man with the 2 uppermost woemen; and then the first man shall be last, and the last first, and then (by?) setting againe, and dancing the Hay, theye shall come both backe againe in their owne places:

And then all sides twice; and then the first, and last woeman doing as the men did aforesayd, that after having set to 1 and 3 at both ends, then dance that hay above, and below, at both ends as afforesayd, and then back again, like as the men have d(xxx) before, them, (like as the last men have before xxx), did dance the hey with the 2 up xxx irst woemmen, set the last woemen or foremost man xx (shall?) xxxxxxxxxxxxx the latter:

All doe arme, or halfe turne, and then the man doe like as he did att first, and soe on as you please:

Playford's third part is progressive (Lovelace's is not), a fact which Sharp seems to have lost.

Unfortunately Sharp's third part contains more interpretation than Playford. In the third part there are four symmetrical heys, Sharp says that three of them have five changes and one has seven. They should all have the same number of changes. Five changes doesn't work, people end in the wrong place. Seven changes doesn't work either for a hey for three. But if the hey morphs into a four person hey halfway through, then seven changes gets everyone to the right place. Of course there is no fourth person to hey with, and since the actives only do two changes, the dancers spend a lot of time weaving around ghosts, which I imagine would be awkward. Personally I prefer doing what Playford said to do.

The animation plays at 120 counts per minute. Men are drawn as rectangles, women as ellipses. Each couple is drawn in its own color.

I.A1-4Up a double, and back
5-8Up a double, and back (again)
I.B11-2M1+M4 set to partner
3-4M1+W2, M4+W3 set
5-10M1 with last two women, M4 with first two, five changes, actives falling into the vacant spot on their own side
I.B21-2M1+W4, M4+W1 set
3-4M1+W3, M4+W2 set
5-10M1 hey with first two women, M4 with last two
II.A1-4Side right
5-8Side left
II.B11-2W1+W4 set to partner
3-4W1+M2, W4+M3 set
5-10W1 with last two men, W4 with first two, five changes, actives falling into the vacant spot on their own side
II.B21-2W1+M4, W4+M1 set
3-4W1+M3, W4+M2 set
5-10W1 hey with first two men, W4 with last two
III.A1-4Arm right
5-8Arm left
III.B11-2M1+W4 set to partner
3-4M1+W2, W4+M3 set
5-10M1 hey with W2+W3 (who move up), the women do seven changes as M1 falls in last place proper, W4 heys with M3+M2 (who move down) W4 ending first place proper
III.B21-2M1+W4 set to opposite
3-4M1+W2, W4+M3 set
5-10Actives hey on opposite sides ending home

If you find what you believe to be a mistake in this animation, please leave a comment on youtube explaining what you believe to be wrong. If I agree with you I shall do my best to fix it.

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The dance itself is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. The interpretation is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. My visualization of this dance is copyright © 2021 by George W. Williams V and is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This website is copyright © 2021,2022 by George W. Williams V
Creative Commons License My work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Most of the dances have more restrictive licensing, see my notes on copyright, the individual dance pages should mention when some rights are waived.