Marlborough - Neal

Marlborough - Neal is an English Country Dance. It was published by John & William Neal in 1726 in A Choice Collection of Country Dances. It was interpreted by Rich Jackson & George Fogg in 1990. It is a proper Duple Minor dance. The minor set lasts 56 bars.

The Neals write:

1st cu: cross over & half figure with 2d cu: in 2d place:
2d cu: ye same into their own places:
1st man: sett to 2d wo: both dance 1 minute step sideways, & 2 minuet steps forwards, then turn her with his right hand:
1st wo: & 2d ma: ye same:
1st & 2d cu: take both hands goe half round in a ring with 2 minuet steps to ye left, ye same to ye right, 1st ma: lead par: with his right hand round 2d ma: into 2d cu: place, both doing ye minuet step:

This dance is bears similarities to Playford's The Marlborough of 1706, and the two tunes are also similar (the Neals have made the B strain twice as long by duplicating it).

Playford writes:

Note: Each Strain is to be play'd twice over.

The first Man and 2. Wo. sett to each other, and then Figure the whole Figure round their own Partners The other two do the same Then 1. Man turn the 2. wo. cross with the Minuet Step, the other two do the same; then Hands quite round; then turn Hands, sides half round, and back again; the first Couple being at the top, both cast off and turn.

The music is a medley. The A strain is 12 bars of reel. The B strain is 8 bars of minuet, and the C is 16 bars of minuet.

The first Duke of Marlborough, was John Churchill, the title a gift from Queen Anne in 1702 for his military triumphs on the Continent over the French. After the Battle of Blenheim, 1704, again with the assistance of the Crown, he built Blenheim Palace. His wife fell out of favor with the queen and he exiled himself to the Continent, not returning to favor until George I took the throne in 1714.

The animation plays at 120 counts per minute normally, but the first time through the set the dance will often be slowed down so people can learn the moves more readily. Men are drawn as rectangles, women as ellipses. Each couple is drawn in its own color, however the border of each dancer indicates what role they currently play so the border color may change each time through the minor set.

The dance contains the following figures: hand turn (allemande), set, circle, lead, figure eight, cross go below (and probably others).

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 copyright © 1990 by Rich Jackson & George Fogg. My visualization of this dance is copyright © 2023 by George W. Williams V and is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This website is copyright © 2021,2022,2023,2024 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.