Barham Down

Submitted by Andrew Swaine on Mon, 2018-03-19, 21:54
Historical sources
Difficulty

Original, triple minor:

A1 (4) 1C cast down into 2nd place and cross-hand swing
A2 (4) 1C cast back up and cross-hand swing
B1 (4) 1C cross, cast down into 2nd place and half figure of eight up through 2C, finishing facing down in the middle of 3C in a line of four
B2 (4) Lines of 4 lead down for three steps and back (2)
1C go down and cast up into 2nd place, 3C optionally helping with gateposts (2)

Modified for duple minor and more equal for 2C (what I actually call):

A1 (4) 1C cast down into 2nd place and cross-hand swing
A2 (4) 2C cast back down and cross-hand swing
B1 (4) 1C cross, cast down into 2nd place and half figure of eight up through 2C, finishing facing up in the middle of 2C in a line of four
B2 (4) Lines of 4 lead up for three steps and back (2)
1C gatepost around 2C into progressed places (2)

First cu. cast off into the 2. cu. places, then Arms round with both Arms, the same back again  :  First cu. cross over into the 2. cu. places, then go the half Figure, the 1. cu. lead down a-breast with 3. cu. the 1. Man goes round the 3d. Man, and the 1. Wo. the same with the 3. Wo. at the same time into the 2. cu. places  ·: .

This is a three-time hornpipe, which is one of my favourite types of dance.

Arms round with both Arms is a very unusual thing to say. If a two-hand turn is what was meant, why not just say “turn”? I'm going to go for a cross-hand swing, because if you give right arm and also left hand then that's sort of what you get. I've only just noticed that on writing this up – I've done it as a two-hand turn in the past!

The B1 is tight. I find three-time hornpipes are often quite tight, and you have two options:

  1. The other couple (2C) move in sympathy with 1C to minimise the distance that 1C need to travel.
  2. Dance! That way you can cover the ground you need to.

I like to encourage both.

The dance is clearly originally a triple minor, but it really doesn't need to be. And it's actually easier as a duple minor as 1C don't have to find 3C at the end of a very tight phrase of music.

As is often the case, it's very uneven in favour of 1C; we might as well have 2C do the repeat rather than 1C in order to get us back home. If I'm modifying it then I might as well do that at the same time.