The Knot is an English Country Dance. It was published by John Playford (website) in 1686. It was interpreted by George Williams in 2023. It is a proper Triple Minor dance. The minor set lasts 48 bars.
First man and 1. wo. cross over into the 2. cu place, and go the Figure through the 2. cu. into their own places again, then they cross over below the 3. cu. and go the Figure, and the 1. man turn the 3. wo. and the 1. so. turn the 3. man, and then turn their own then 1. man turn the 2. wo. and 1. wo: the 2. mann, then all four take left hands and turn half round into their places again; The the other cu. do the same over. This to the tune played once over.
Then the 1. man and 1. wo: cast off into the next cu. places, and lead through them round into the their places again, then cast off and lead through them again, and turn his own, then 1. man turn the 2. wo. and 1. wo. the 2 man, and then each turn his own half round into their places again; The rest do the same over.
When Playford says and go the Figure through the 2. cu. into their own places again, he can't mean for the 1s to end up at the top again. He must mean into their progressed places.
I assume all four take left hands and turn half round means left hands across rather than a circle left. We have two left hands across here. If this had been published 50 years later I would be tempted to make the first a right hands across, but I don't think that convention had evolved by 1686.
When Playford draws a horizontal bar across the instructions he usually means a multi part dance. And he seems to be suggesting that when he says This to the tune played once over., but we haven't played the tune once. We've played 32 bars of 48. And while the 1s are proper in the 3s place, the 2s+3s are both improper. So I'm pretty sure the dance does not repeat at this point (as it would in a multipart).
Why cast and lead twice through the same couple? Then the 1. man and 1. wo: cast off into the next cu. places, and lead through them round into the their places again, then cast off and lead through them again, Furthermore, at the end of this the 1s need to be near the 2s so they can turn with them. So I think somewhere in this the 1s must move from 3rd place to 2nd.
Then we have the sequence: and turn his own, then 1. man turn the 2. wo. and 1. wo. the 2 man, and then each turn his own half round into their places again; I am confused by the initial "and turn his own". I prosume this is directed to the 1s alone. There's only time for a half turn, and if the 1s do a half turn then everyone is improper and the 1s won't be turning opposite sex 2s on the next figure. So I'm going to leave that call out, and then change the final then each turn his own half round into their places again to a four bar turn which will everyone will do, leaving all couples proper.
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 dances of George Williams (including this one) are licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike: CC BY-NC-SA license.
|A1||1-4||1s cross, go below, as 2s lead up|
|5-8||1s half figure eight up through 2s|
|A2||1-4||1s cross, go below, as 3s lead up|
|5-8||1s half figure eight up through 3s|
|B1||1-4||1s+3s neighbor right turn once and a half|
|5-8||1s+3s partner left turn once|
|B2||1-4||1s+2s neighbor right turn once and a half|
|5-6||1s+2s left hands across half|
|7-8||1s+3s left hands across half|
|C1||1-4||1s cast above 3s and lead back to places|
|5-8||1s cast above 2s and lead back to middle as 3s lead down|
|C2||1-4||1s+2s neighbor right hand turn|
|5-8||All partner left hand turn to proper|
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.
The dance itself is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. The interpretation is copyright © 2023 by George Williams. And is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. 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 by George W. Williams V
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.