Thomas I Cannot 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. Originally a Triple Minor this version is a proper Duple Minor dance. The minor set lasts 28 bars.
The Neals write:
1st cu: cast off into 2d cu: place & jump up:
cast up again into their own paces & jump:
cross over and figure with 2d cu: & shuffle in 2d cu: place:
Lead thrô 3d cu: going around them into 2d cu: place & lead thrô 2d cu: going around them into 2d cu: place & shuffle
In 1670 Playford published a dance named Thomas You Cannot but the figures are very different, and while the tune has the same structure it looks different to me.
Playford also published this dance in 1718.
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: set, cast, lead, figure eight, lead and cast, 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.
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 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.