The Whish

The Wish

The Whish or The Wish is an English Country Dance. It was published by John Playford (website) in 1651 in The English Dancing Master. It was interpreted by Cecil Sharp (website) in 1922 and published in The Country Dance Book (Part 6). It is a proper 3 Couple Longways dance. There is no progression in this dance. It is a USA dance. The dance lasts 154 bars.

Playford writes:
Lead up a D. forward and back, set and fall back That again The 2. man lead in the first man between the first we. cast off, fall to your places and arms Then lead in the last man between the two last we. fall to your places and arms Then the middle wo. do as much

Sides all, set and fall back That again The 2. cu. lead up between the first, cast off, fall to your places, turn your own As much between the last cu. Then lead in between them as before.

Arms all, set and fall back That again The 2. cu. cross over between the first cu. cross over again between them, fall to your places As much between the last cu. Then lead in between them as before.

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.A11-4Up a double and back
5-7Set forward and fall back
I.A21-4Up a double, back (again)
5-7Set forward and fall back
I.A31-4Top two men lead between top women and cast back home
5-7Same two arm left
I.A41-4Bottom two men lead between bottom women and cast back home
5-7Same two arm left
I.A51-4Top two women lead between top men and cast back home
5-7Same two arm right
I.A61-4Bottom two women lead between bottom men and cast back home
5-7Same two arm right
II.A11-4Side right
5-7Set forward and fall back
II.A21-4Side left
5-7Set forward and fall back
II.A31-42s lead to top and cast back home
5-72s two hand turn
II.A41-42s lead to bottom and cast back home
5-72s two hand turn
II.A51-4Top two men lead between top women and cast back home
5-7Same two arm left
II.A61-4Bottom two men lead between bottom women and cast back home
5-7Same two arm left
II.A71-4Top two women lead between top men and cast back home
5-7Same two arm right
II.A81-4Bottom two women lead between bottom men and cast back home
5-7Same two arm right
III.A11-4Arm right
5-7Set forward and fall back
III.A21-4Arm left
5-7Set forward and fall back
III.A31-72s full figure eight up through 1s
III.A41-72s full figure eight down through 3s
III.A51-4Top two men lead between top women and cast back home
5-7Same two arm left
III.A61-4Bottom two men lead between bottom women and cast back home
5-7Same two arm left
III.A71-4Top two women lead between top men and cast back home
5-7Same two arm right
III.A81-4Bottom two women lead between bottom men and cast back home
5-7Same two arm right

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.