Between the Lines: Learning the Moves #dance #research #history

One thing I love to do is to dance. So for a story I’m working on, I needed to understand about balls and the dances people enjoyed in the 18th century. So when hubby and I went to Williamsburg last year, one of the opportunities that excited me was a ballroom dancing lesson.

IMG_0140Not only would we experience the sound of the music performed by a flutist, but we were also taught the positions and steps of several different dances. I learned that when a man bows to his female partner, he extends his leg in front to demonstrate his strength. That’s also why men of that period wore breeches and knickers, so the calf muscle was evident and proved their strength. Thus, their worthiness as a partner, for dancing or perhaps marriage.

IMG_0198We joined in the circles of dancers, learned to turn to greet our partner and then turn to greet the person on our opposite side. The instructor showed us how to clap and spin, step in one direction and then other, all while not touching each other, except maybe to pat hands with another dancer. It was all very prim and proper and took more effort than it appears!

We had a fun hour or so, dancing and laughing at our ineptness. Afterward, I questioned the lady instructor as to particulars I was curious about, and then we went out to a tavern to find something cold to drink! Whew! We had such a great afternoon there. I hope to return sometime in the near future.

Have you been to Colonial Williamsburg? What’s your favorite memory?

Thanks for stopping by! Until next time, happy reading!


P.S. If you haven’t already, please consider signing up for my newsletter, which I only send out when there is news to share. News like new covers, new releases, and upcoming appearances where I love to meet my readers. Thanks and happy reading!

Emily's Vow Finalist SealWant to read more about 18th century America? Check out my A More Perfect Union series, which starts with Emily’s Vow (a finalist in 2015 International Book Awards).

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