Lull Me Beyond Thee

Tim McDaniel, in the SCA Daniel de Lincoln

13 April 2012

Cheat Sheet à la Terp Booklet

Lull Me Beyond Thee (Playford 1651)
(4 couples in a line, C3 C1 C2 C4, C2 and C4 improper) == In 1, Yes, 1 ==

C1 and C2 are mids. C3 and C4 are ends. C1 and C2 are opposites for each other; C3 and C4 are opposites for each other. This is "longways":

               wall

        W3   W1   M2   M4
head                          down
        M3   M1   W2   W4

               wall
V1 Longways lines, double to meet & back (2x) 8;8
Ch1a Ends double to meet as mids double out 4
New sideways lines double back & meet a double; two-hand turn your opposite 8;8
Ch1b Ends double out as mids double to meet 4
New longways lines double back & meet a double; two-hand turn your partner 8;8
V2 Side R w/partner 8
Side on the square: ends side L w/partner as mids side L with opposites 8
Ch2a Longways lines double out; mids fall back a double as ends curve in to form circles 4;4
Circle L full circle 8
Ch2b Sideways lines double out; mids fall back a double as ends curve in to form circles 4;4
Circle L full circle 8
V3 Arm R w/partner 8
Arm on the square: ends arm L w/partner as mids arm L with opposites 8
Ch3a Mids double out as ends pass partners and cross over a double 4
Mids double back as each end doubles to meet opposite 4
Mids form arches and double out as ends double under 4
Take two hands with whom you're facing, half turn 4
Ch3b Ends double out as mids pass opposites and cross over a double 4
Ends double back as each mid doubles to meet opposite 4
Ends form arches and double out as mids double under 4
Take two hands with partner, full turn 4

Setup and numbering

This is my reconstruction of the English country dance "Lull Me Beyond Thee" (Playford first edition, 1651). The goal of the rest of this document is to be so complete that someone somewhat familiar with English Country Dance can dance my reconstruction just from this and common music. It is complicated because of the number of unusual movements, and because often two groups of people are doing different things simultaneously.

Start by lining up longways with four couples. M are men, W are women. "Up" is the end with the Presence or the music or whatever:

               wall

        W3   W1   M2   M4
up                             down
        M3   M1   W2   W4

               wall

This numbering is from Playford, but is not very important. What's important is whether a dancer is a "middle" (1 or 2) or "end" (3 or 4). Your partner is the person across from you, with the same number but opposite sex. For the middles, your opposite is beside you: M1 and W2 are opposites; W1 and M2 are opposites. For the ends, your opposite is at the other end of the set: M3 and W4 are opposites; W3 and M4 are opposites.

People's notations don't change when they move. For example, M1 is always a middle with W1 as his partner and W2 as his opposite, regardless of where he is and who he's dancing with.

I use "the center" to refer to the general area where the middles start. "Out" means turning your back to the center, either facing the walls or facing up or down, depending. "In" is the opposite: facing the center.

"Sideways" refers to when the lines are instead running from wall to wall:

       wall

      W_  M_

      W_  M_
up            down
      M_  W_

      M_  W_

       wall

The steps

Nota bene: in all the step listings below, moves in the same paragraph are done simultaneously, unless stated otherwise.

Turning or taking hands are often notated as taking 0 beats. That's not really possible. Instead, they are combined with the previous or upcoming moves.

It helps to note the repeating patterns in the choruses, as I interpret them. I call it a "cootie catcher" pattern. Each chorus starts with the set longways, and the middles take inside hands with their opposite and double out, while the ends head towards their opposites (the meeting place depends on which chorus). Halfway through a chorus, after 16 beats, the set is sideways. The chorus then repeats in a symmetric way: whoever is now in the center takes inside hands and doubles out, while the others head towards their partners in some way. At the end of the chorus, after 32 beats, the set is longways again and everyone is home.

Verse 1: Take hands longways, double to meet, back, that again

Start in longways lines, facing your partner and holding hands four abreast:

       -W3---W1---M2---M4-

       -M3---M1---W2---W4-
BeatsSteps
4Double forward as a line to meet your partner
4Double backwards to your original place
4Double forward as a line to meet your partner
4Double backwards to your original place

Chorus 1: sideways the line, two-handed turn

BeatsSteps
0Ends: quarter turn to face the center, take inside hands with your partner. Middles: half turn to face out, take inside hands with your opposite.
        W3   W1-^-M2   M4
        |>             <|
        M3   M1-v-W2   W4
4Middles: small double out. Ends: double towards the center to meet your opposites.
0Middles: let go and quarter turn to face your opposite. All: take hands in sideways lines four abreast. Every person is now facing their opposite.
        |    |
        W1  M2
        |    |
        W3  M4
        |    |
        M3  W4
        |    |
        M1  W4
        |    |
BeatsSteps
12Each line does a small double backwards, double forward to meet, take two hands with your opposite, do one full turn, let go.

Now the same thing but reversing the roles of middles and ends, making the lines longways again with everyone home:

BeatsSteps
0Middles: quarter turn to face the center, take inside hands with your opposite. Ends: half turn to face out (up or down), take inside hands with your partner.
        W1-v-M2

        W3   M4
        <|   |>
        M3   W4

        M1-^-W4
4Ends: small double out. Middles: double towards the center to meet your partners.
0Ends: let go and quarter turn to face your partner. All: take hands in longways lines four abreast. Every person is now home and facing their partner.
12Small double backwards as a line, double forward to meet, take two hands with your partner, do one full turn, let go.

Verse 2: side with your partner, side on the square

Everyone is home and facing their partner, not holding hands. I call this verse as "side right shoulders" then "side on the square". That is, the first time is done like normal siding for a set of couples. But the second time is aligned like in "If All The World Were Paper" or other dances with four couples aligned in a square set: in that kind of dance, the head couples do siding parallel to the presence, but the side couples do siding parallel to the walls.

BeatsSteps
8Side right shoulders with your partner.
8Side on the square. Ends: side left shoulders with your partner. Middles: side left shoulders with your opposite.

Chorus 2: double out and circle squares

BeatsSteps
0Turn to face out, towards the wall. Take hands in longways lines, four abreast.
4Double forward as a line.
4Don't let go. Middles: double backward to your original place. Ends: wrap inwards to meet your opposite, then join free hands to form a square.
        W3--M4
        |    |
        W1--M2

        M1--W2
        |    |
        M3--W4
8Turn the square one full circle clockwise back to your new place.

Each square should be precise, aligned with the walls.

Now do it again, but starting with sideways lines, then two squares longways from each other, getting back home.

BeatsSteps
0Turn out. Those closer to up, meaning couples 1 and 3: face up. Those closer to down, meaning couples 2 and 4: face down. Take hands in sideways lines, four abreast.
        W3  M4
        <|  |>
facing  W1  M2    facing
        <|  |>
up      M1  W2    down
        <|  |>
        M3  W4
BeatsSteps
4Double out as a line, meaning up or down.
4Don't let go. Middles: double backward to original places. Ends: wrap inwards to meet your partner, join free hands to form a square. Everyone is now home.
8Turn the square one full circle clockwise back to home. Let go, turn to face your partner.

Verse 3: arm with your partner, arm on the square

Like at the start of verse 2, everyone is home and facing their partner. I call this as "arm right arms" then "arm on the square". Arm as you sided.

BeatsSteps
8Arm right arms with your partner.
8Arm on the square. Ends: arm left arms with your partner. Middles: arm left arms with your opposite.

Chorus 3: crossover and arches

BeatsSteps
0Middles: half turn to face out, take inside hands with your opposite.
4All double forward. Middles: forward a small double. Ends: a bigger double to pass your partner by the right shoulder and get near the mids on the opposite side of the set.
    M3  W1---M2  W4





    W3  M1---W2  M4
4Middles: backwards a small double back to place. Ends: double to meet your opposite in the places the middles are vacating.
        M3--W4

        W1--M2

        M1--W2

        W3--M4
4Arches. All double. Middles: keeping inside hands with your partner, form an arch and double out. Ends: take inside hands, double towards the center passing under the arches, meet your partner.
        W1--M2

        M3--W4

        W3--M4

        M1--W2
4Ends: two-handed turn halfway the one you're facing, who is your partner. Middles: two-handed turn halfway the one you're with, who is your opposite. Then all let go.

At this point, halfway through this chorus, this is the lineup, with the ends in the center and middles outside:

        M2  W1

        W3  M4

        M3  W4

        W2  M1

The ends, when they crossed, got "improper" (opposite their original side), but the half turn got them proper again. The middles were OK until the half turn exchanged the two couples.

Finish the chorus with the same, except this time the ends go out-in-out, and the middles cross (unreversing them) and pass under the arches.

BeatsSteps
0Ends: half turn to face out, take inside hands with your partner.
4All double forward. Ends: forward a small double. Middles: a bigger double to pass your opposite by the right shoulder and get near the ends on the opposite side of the set.
    W1          M2

    W3          M4
    |            |
    M3          W4

    M1          W2
BeatsSteps
4Ends: double back. Middles: double to meet your opposite in the places the ends are vacating.
        W1  W3  M4  M2
        |    |  |    |
        M1  M3  W4  W2
4All double. Ends: keeping inside hands with your partner, form an arch and double forward. Middles: take inside hands, double towards the center passing under the arches, meet your opposite.

You're now back home.

4Two-handed full turn your partner, ending back home again.

A good rendition is track 15 from Country Capers by the New York Renaissance Band.

See http://www.rendancedb.org/dance_detail.php?id=45 for other sources, including a facsimile of John Playford's The English Dancing Master, first edition, 1651.

Copyright 2012 by Tim McDaniel, tmcd@panix.com.

The URL for this page is http://www.panix.com/~tmcd/dance/lull_me_beyond_thee/lull_me_beyond_thee.html