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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Accordion

Accordion

A set of bellows with a piano keyboard on the right hand side, and plenty of buttons offering bass notes and chords on left hand side. All the notes are the same on the push and pull of the bellows. Accordions are fully chromatic. See also button accordion.

 

Ales

Ales

From the medieval until the 17th century ales were a local gathering with food and entertainment. They were often money raising events organised by the church.

 

Alternative

Alternative

A word normally used to describe people who have interests in and often wear clothing associated with; metal, goth, punk and emo subcultures.

 

Anglo Concertina

Anglo Concertina

The Anglo concertina was invented in the 1830s. It has a set of bellows, with buttons on either side that play different notes on the push or pull of the bellows.

 

Arch

Arch

A figure, first introduced in the Norfolk Long Dance where two dancers raise hands and others dance underneath.

 

Armbands

Armbands

A piece of fabric sometimes decorated with ribbon, worn on the bicep of the arm and/or on the lower half of the arm below the elbow.

 

Attendants

Attendants

People who look after something or someone like a bodyguard or a servant.

 

Balance

Balance

A step danced on the spot used in greeting partner.

 

Baldrics

Baldrics

The shortened form of cross-baldrics, this describes two ribbons or small sashes which are worn diagonally over each shoulder crossing at the centre of the chest and the centre of the back. Often there are rosettes at the crossing points.

 

Baubles

Baubles

Similar to Christmas baubles today, in the past this term was used to describe a shiny, pretty object which would have been sewn onto clothing.

 

Beads

Beads

Small hard decorations with a hole through the middle. Often used to make necklaces.

 

Bell-pad/s

Bell-pad/s

Bells are attached to a fabric base, often leather. Normally the pad is then worn on the calf below the knee. The bell pad is sometimes decorated with ribbons.

 

Bell/s

Bell/s

A hollow metal object which 'rings' when shaken. Bells of different sizes and made of different metals produce different notes, the larger the bell the lower the noise.

 

Belt/s

Belt/s

A belt is a piece of fabric or leather which is often worn around the top of trousers or skirt. Belts can be decorative or just stop the trousers or skirt from falling down.

 

Black face

Black face

Black face refers to applying black substances often formally soot but now normally stage make-up to the face as part of a costume worn for customary performance.

 

Blakey's segs

Blakey's segs

A metal sole and heel protector worn on the bottom of the shoe to protect it from wear.

 

Blending

Blending

Moving smoothly from one movement, step or figure into the next so that dancing is 'seamless'.

 

Bodice

Bodice

On women's clothing this refers to the close fitting top half of a garment.

 

Bonnet

Bonnet

A woman's head covering popular in the Victorian period with a wide brim which protected the eyes of the wearer from the sun. They were made in a range of materials including straw and cotton. Bonnets normally had flaps down the back which protected the neck of the wearer from the sun.

 

Bottom

Bottom

The far end of the set, the end away from the music.

 

Braces

Braces

Supporting straps normally made from elastic worn over the shoulders and clipped onto the trousers of the wearer.

 

Braid

Braid

Decorative trimmings which are applied to clothing. These could be woven with pictures or repeating patterns or textured, combining a variety of different types of fabrics into complex and visually interesting patterns.

 

Branle

Branle

A type of dance popular in Tudor times, in which dancers formed a line or circle and moved from side to side with a simple step pattern, often comically imitating well-known characters in the movements.

 

Breeches

Breeches

Breeches were the normal clothes for men throughout the 1700s. They were normally buttoned just below the knee and were worn with long socks called stockings. They started to fall out of fashion in 1790 and by the Victorian period most men wore trousers instead of breeches.

 

Button Accordion

Button Accordion

A set of bellows with buttons on the right hand side arranged in 3 rows, playing in the keys of B, C and C . This allows the instrument to be fully chromatic. The notes on this side are different on the push and pull of the bellows. There are buttons on the left hand side, which provide bass notes and chords (as the piano accordion) -- and are the same on push or pull of the bellows. See also Accordion

 

Cadging

Cadging

An exchange of entertainment for money and/or refreshment. Busking is a common form of cadging today and is seen as distinct from begging because money is exchanged for entertainment rather than out of pity.

 

Call

Call

A brief prompt to remind dancers what comes next, using as few words as possible, spoken in time so that the dancers have heard it before the figure is due to commence.

 

Captain

Captain

In folk dance this is a person who leads other people. Whilst part of the team they are normally distinct from the activities of the people he leads. Sometimes he has a special uniform.

 

Cast

Cast

A movement which takes two or more dancers away from their present positions, usually by turning the longest way.

 

Ceremonial

Ceremonial

A ceremonial folk tradition is one which is supposed to be watched by the majority of people, rather than one where most people are expected to join in.

 

Choreography

Choreography

A range of movements normally broken down into steps. These steps are often used to define different dances and different styles of dance.

 

Circle

Circle

A figure performed with hands joined in a ring and traversing a circular track.

 

Circle skirts

Circle skirts

Circle skirts are made from a large circle with a hole in the middle for the waist of the wearer. When the person turns the whole skirt will flare out around them in a giant circle.

 

Clog

Clog

An English clog has a wooden sole and leather upper and was worn in the nineteenth century as everyday footwear. Steps performed with clogs with which the dancer beats out various rhythms are known as clog dancing, and this was the forerunner of tap dancing. Sometimes iron or rubber is attached to the bottom to make them non-slip and longer lasting.

 

Coconut

Coconut

Wooden disc worn on the knees and wrists of morris dancers in Bacup, Lancashire, particularly in dances performed at Easter.

 

Colours -- sporting colours

Colours -- sporting colours

Teams or individuals in sports will normally wear a distinct colour or combination of colours which allows the audience to recognise them easily.

 

Competitions

Competitions

Where two or more opponents (or teams) try and beat each other at a particular activity. Competitions are normally in front of a judge or panel of judges with pre-agreed competition rules.

 

Concertina

Concertina

A traditional folk instrument invented in the nineteenth century in England, it is played by pulling and pushing bellows (originally leather) and pressing buttons on the ends of a hexagonal or similar panel.

The Anglo concertina is played by pulling and pushing for different notes, like a melodeon, the English concertina by pulling/pushing for the same note, like an Accordion.

 

Convention

Convention

Another word for tradition, convention means that way that things are normally done.

 

Cotswolds (the)

Cotswolds (the)

A southern rural area of England which is nationally recognised as an area of distinct natural beauty. The Cotswolds are the area within the Cotswold hills and includes land in the counties of Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Somerset, Warwickshire, Wiltshire and Worcestershire.

The Cotswolds are also home to the Cotswold morris tradition.

Cotswold morris costume

Cotswold morris

 

Courtly

Courtly

Associated with wealthy titled families and the monarchy.

 

Cross-dressing

Cross-dressing

Cross-dressing is when a person of one sex puts on the clothes which are typically worn by the other sex.

 

Custom/s

Custom/s

An activity or way of life which is considered normal or traditional for a particular group of people.

 

Disguise

Disguise

A change in clothing or general appearance in order to look different from your ordinary recognisable self.

 

Disguising -- medieval term

Disguising -- medieval term

Disguise often formed the key component in popular medieval courtly entertainment. For example a play where a prince disguised himself as a beggar in order to win the hand of the princess. Eventually disguising came to refer to the play itself.

 

Doodling

Doodling

Also referred to as 'diddling'. Giving the rhythm of the tune verbally while learning the moves so that dancers can understand the timing.

 

Double cast

Double cast

A D-shaped figure performed with a partner and the rest of the group following the lead couple by making an arc to the left and dancing straight up to places.

 

Down

Down

Away from the music and the top of the set towards the bottom.

 

Emblem

Emblem

The sign, symbol or mascot of a person or group.

 

English Concertina

English Concertina

The English concertina was invented in the 1820s. It has a set of bellows with buttons on either side that play the same notes on the push or pull of the bellows.

 

Farandole

Farandole

A dance dating from the 12th century, performed in a line with the leader executing various weaving figures, it has survived in dances such as Golowan.

 

Feathers

Feathers

These come from birds and form the outer layer of its coat or plumage. Feathers have been used to decorate hats in the UK since the 15th century.

 

Fiddle

Fiddle

Fiddle

Often tuned identically to a classical violin, it is the technique and style of playing folk music on it that makes it a fiddle. The fiddle has been associated with folk music for many centuries. Recently there has been an increase in popularity of the cello and viola folk music too.

 

Figure

Figure

A movement or series of movements in a dance, often a geometrical track, executed by some or all of the group to all or part of a phrase of music.

 

First couple

First couple

The pair of dancers nearest the music who, in most dances, take the lead and/or executes the figure first. The first couple may change if the dance is progressive, or another couple may lead subsequently.

 

First Footing

First Footing

The first person to enter a household in the New Year

 

Folk festivals

Folk festivals

A gathering of people interested in folk music, dance and related activities such as crafts. Festivals often involve camping, large concerts, social dancing and display dancing.

 

Fools stick

Fools stick

Carried by the fool, the stick is normally a piece of wood about half an arm's length long. This is sometimes painted. Often there is an inflated pig's bladder or balloon attached to the stick which is used to 'assault' the dancers and occasionally the audience.

 

Footwork

Footwork

The way the feet are moved, good footwork will normally feature well controlled feet which move in time with the music and are able to complete complicated steps.

 

Formal line

Formal line

Formation in which a single line of dancers performs a dance in a set pattern with a set progression.

 

Formation

Formation

The arrangement of dancers at the start of a dance, also known as the set.

 

Friendly Societies

Friendly Societies

These were popular clubs which would financially support its members in times of need.

 

Galliard

Galliard

An historic form of dance popular in Elizabethan times, livelier than the pavane and often coupled with it.

 

Gallop

Gallop

A sideways, scissor-like, travelling step also known as a slip.

 

Gansey

Gansey

The Gansey is a thick knitted jumper worn by seamen in the 19th and 20th century. Made of a heavy wool and knitted with a dense pattern they were effective at keeping the sailor warm in wet and windy weather. This type of jumper is also known as a Guernsey.

 

Gathered

Gathered

When fabric is drawn together in lots of small uneven pleats. Gathering is commonly seen on skirts near the waistband.

 

Grotesque

Grotesque

Ugly or hideous, normally in a humorous way.

 

Guisers

Guisers

This is the short form of disguisers, used as another word for mummers and Folk Drama.

 

Guizers

Guizers

Men in outlandish costumes parading the streets of Allendale to the accompaniment of a band whilst balancing blazing tar barrels (more like tubs) on their heads.

 

Handkerchiefs

Handkerchiefs

A large square of fabric sometimes finished with lace or embroidery and used as decoration in a jacket side pocket or as a nose tissue. These have been common since the 15th century but use of them has declined recently due to the rise of the disposable tissue.

 

Hands across

Hands across

Danced in 4's (usually), each dancer takes right hands as if about to shake hands with the person diagonally opposite, the two pairs of hands are then raised to just below shoulder height, sufficient tension is given with the fingers to propel the star round clockwise. Dancers then change hands and dance back anti-clockwise.

 

Hessian

Hessian

Loosely woven cheap fabric, used in the 19th century to make sacks for goods.

 

Hey

Hey

A figure also known as a reel, in which three dancers simultaneously weave a figure of eight track.

 

Hobby horse/s

Hobby horse/s

A representation of a horse created through a variety of means but normally featuring a horse's head. From the medieval hobby meaning horse.

 

Hoggers

Hoggers

Shorts which finish at the knee, worn by rapper dancers.

 

Honour

Honour

The bow/curtsey given as a courtesy movement by dancers to their partners, or others with whom they have been dancing, at the end, and sometimes the beginning and during the dance.

 

Hood

Hood

A head cover which comes over the back of the head, as seen on hoodies.

 

Hooden

Hooden

Comes from the word hooded as the wearer's whole body is covered or hooded by fabric.

 

Hornpipe

Hornpipe

Rhythm used for dancing (see College Hornpipe), often a dotted reel. Steps which fit are step-hop, and 1-2-3-hop. Count four beats to each bar.

A description of the musical form of the hornpipe is available here.

 

Horse brasses

Horse brasses

Small metallic decorations used for decorating horses' harnesses, they are normally about 10 cm round.

 

Iconic

Iconic

From the word icon which implies both symbolisism and something greater. In the past it often referred to religious icons such as a picture of the Virgin Mary. Today the word is used more loosely, if something is iconic then it represents something else, often that something is a recognised movement or idea. For example A T-shirt with 'God Save the Queen' written on it might be viewed as an iconic piece of punk culture.

 

Impromptu

Impromptu

Unplanned.

 

Informal line

Informal line

A dance performed in a line with no set pattern of figures and no set progression.

 

Ingenuity

Ingenuity

Being clever, skilled and trying out new techniques and methods.

 

Inheritance

Inheritance

Knowledge, understanding and material belongings which are passed down consciously or unconsciously from one generation to the next.

 

Inside hands

Inside hands

When dancers stand side by side, inside hands are the nearer, so if facing up, boy's right, girl's left.

 

Jig

Jig

(a) rhythm of music used for dancing which is bouncy.

(b) a morris jig is a solo or duo morris dance.

(c) a jig can also refer to a step dance, especially one done in jig (6/8) timing.               

You can read and hear the musical description of a jig here.

 

Kilts

Kilts

A skirt which finishes around the knee. It is densely pleated with the pleats continuing to the bottom of the garment. Often made in tartan it is seen as an important part of the national dress of Scotland.

 

Knickerbockers

Knickerbockers

Loose shorts very similar to hoggers which were worn for sportswear and country pursuits in America and Europe from the mid 19th century until the 20th.

 

Lace

Lace

A decorative trimming which has holes as the main feature.

 

Lancers and Quadrilles

Lancers and Quadrilles

19th century dances developed from the movements of squadrons of show-parade horsemen in 17th century Italy. Each had five sections which contained figures from the country dances.

 

Lead

Lead

a) movement where dancers, usually a pair, go up or down the room,

b) chief dancer(s) in any particular move or figure.

 

Lift

Lift

Upward feel while dancing provided by good music and individual's own rise as (s)he moves.

 

Long sword

Long sword

A long bar of metal or wood used for dances in which dancers are mainly linked by holding the swords, and perform movements over and under each other's swords without releasing hold.

 

Longways set

Longways set

Formation in which partners stand in double file in the size of group required to perform the dance.

 

Mask/s

Mask/s

A full or partial face covering.

 

Masques

Masques

An elaborate courtly entertainment with outlandish costumes and incredible special effects popular in the 1600s and 1700s. They featured music, dance, amazing sets and over the top costumes.

 

Medals

Medals

A small piece of metal which commemorates an event, often a competition which the person has participated or competed at. As is the case with Olympic medals these can be attached to ribbons and worn around from the neck.

 

Melodeon

Melodeon

Traditional musical instrument with bellows and buttons at both ends which works on the same principle as the mouth organ and Anglo concertina

 

Military

Military

Relating to the armed forces including the army, navy and air force.

 

Mini-skirts

Mini-skirts

A short skirt which will cover the bottom of the wearer but finishes far above the knee.

 

Molly (the)

Molly (the)

A man in female clothing who dances or accompanies the molly dances.

 

Moors

Moors

The Moors were people of Muslim religionand often North-African descent who settled in and around Spain in the medieval period until the 15th century, when after much bloody conflict and persecution they were driven out.

 

Moving arches

Moving arches

Figure in which one pair of dancers raise hands and move forward, over another pair, who move forward under the arms of the first.

 

Music hall

Music hall

A popular theatre where a variety of entertainment took place.

 

Naturalistic

Naturalistic

Imitating actual life and reality as closely and convincingly as possible.

 

Normal/normally

Normal/normally

The regular occurrence of life. What tends to happen every day.

 

Oak Apple

Oak Apple

When a gall wasp lays its larvae in an oak tree the oak tree creates a white roundish bile in response. This grows solid and looks like a hollow ball of paper.

 

Oak Apple Day

Oak Apple Day

29th of May celebrates the day when the British monarchy was restored to the throne after the civil war. Once a large national day of celebration it its now only celebrated in a few places. Many May the 1st customs were moved to Oak Apple day when it was made a public holiday in the 17th century.

 

Obby Oss

Obby Oss

The hobby horse. Associated with traditions in Padstow, Cornwall. The 'Old 'Oss' and the Blue Ribbon 'Oss' each have an enormous frame draped with heavy, black tarpaulin with a symbolic horse's head and a real horse hair tail on the rim.

 

Occupational

Occupational

Related to a person's work or job.

 

Old Tup

Old Tup

Tup was another word for ram -- a male sheep.

 

One-two-three-hop

One-two-three-hop

Step consisting of three forward running steps and a slight hop, usually performed to a hornpipe rhythm.

 

Paisley

Paisley

A specific type of fabric originally referring to wool shawls which were inspired by Indian fabrics but woven in Paisley, Scotland. They usually have a curling tear drop /leaf shape as a repeating pattern.

 

Parti-coloured

Parti-coloured

Where different parts of the garment are made in different colours. For example one leg on a pair of trousers is red and the other leg is green.

 

Participation

Participation

To join in with an activity.

 

Pavane

Pavane

A slow, stately dance originating in Spain or Italy, popular in the time of Elizabeth I.

 

Percussion

Percussion

Percussion instruments play the beat or rhythm rather than the tune. Examples include drums, shakers, maracas and the triangle.

 

Phrasing

Phrasing

The adjustment of the movement within the music for it to give shape to the dance by emphasis, surge, tailing off, pause etc., as appropriate.

 

Pierrot

Pierrot

From Peter, one of the stock characters in the Commedia Del Arte an improvised Italian comedy which was popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. He was the sad clown who had his heart broken. He had a recognisable costume of loose fitting white clothing and a white face sometimes with a tear drawn on.

 

Plough jags

Plough jags

A group, sometimes 20+ people, of agricultural labourers, usually young men.

 

Plough Monday

Plough Monday

The first Monday after the twelfth day of Christmas. It was considered to be the first day of the new agricultural year.

 

Polka

Polka

A partner dance invented in Bohemia and popular in the 19th century to a step similar to the skip-change used in the dances from Cambridgeshire.

 

Pom-poms

Pom-poms

A round ball of textiles often made with wool, the fibres are pushed densely together and they have a fluffy look and feel to them.

 

Progressive

Progressive

A dance in which one pair of dancers moves to the last place in a group or set, and a new pair takes the lead.

 

Promenade

Promenade

Dance on side by side with a partner, usually in a square or circular set.

 

Pumps

Pumps

A lightweight flexible shoe with a rubber sole commonly used in PE in schools throughout the 20th century but increasingly replaced by the trainer. Pumps - especially Converse have recently become common casual foot wear.

 

Rag jackets

Rag jackets

Jackets or waistcoats to which strips of fabric 'rags' have been attached.Today most rags are sewn by hand or machine. Some teams instead make two holes in the jacket and insert the rags through the holes trying them to keep them secure.

 

Rag/s

Rag/s

This word refers to cloth which is either old, dirty, worn and frayed (the weave is coming away and the threads which make up the fabric are coming loose) or cloth which resembles any of these characteristics. In the past people might have used old clothing or other textiles (perhaps sacking) as rags which were then used for dirty jobs, especially cleaning the house. Today dancers either cut up old clothes, use fabric off-cuts or buy new cloth to make their rags out of.

 

Rapper Sword

Rapper Sword

A flexible metal bar used in dances in which dancers are mainly linked by holding the swords and perform movements over and under each other's swords without releasing hold.

 

Reel

Reel

a) usually flat, driving rhythm of music for dancing

b) alternative name for figure called hey.

 

Reindeer horns

Reindeer horns

Antlers from a Reindeer which has died.

 

Revived

Revived

Revived means to bring back to health or life. Many of England's folk customs had died out by the early 20th century. People who were interested in them researched them and brought about their own version of the custom. Historians looking at folk customs actually think that we should see customs such as morris dancing as a sequence of revivals, each one making the custom relevant for the time it was revived in and taking the elements from the past which suit it best.

 

Ribbon/s

Ribbon/s

In the past ribbons referred to any narrow strip of fabric often applied as decoration to a garment. Now ribbon is a specially prepared piece of fabric which is finished at the long edges. Ribbons today are normally smooth and shiny like silk.

 

Ribboners

Ribboners

Another term for mummers. Ribboners refers to teams who had costumes which were covered in strips of fabric.

 

Robin Hood

Robin Hood

A legendary folk-hero and general good guy with many stories to his name.

 

Rosette/s

Rosette/s

Ribbons or other fabric which have been tightly pleated or gathered into a circle. Often rosettes have several layers of colours, a round centre piece in the middle and tails of ribbon dangling down from the centre. They are often given as prizes at competitive events such as dog shows.

 

Roud numbers

Roud numbers

Roud numbers are assigned to songs to help with both identification and location and to counter the problems of multiple and variant titles. Thus, the song 'Seeds of Love' has been assigned the Roud Number three, and a search on this number will bring up all versions, whatever the title, wherever found.

 

Roundels

Roundels

Circles often used as symbols.

 

Sash/es

Sash/es

Pieces of cloth (often brightly coloured) which are knotted or pinned either at the waist or diagonally across the chest.

 

Sean Nos

Sean Nos

Old style.

 

Set dance

Set dance

Folk dance in which a prescribed number of dancers perform the figures together.

 

Sicilian circle

Sicilian circle

Dance in which facing groups of dancers (usually two, three or four) are arranged in a circle, half facing clockwise and half anticlockwise, and having danced the figures of the dance move on in the direction they are facing to dance the same figures with a new group.

 

Signifies

Signifies

From the word signal this word is similar to symbol. The object is seen to represent something else. The police uniform signifies that the wearer is in the police force.

 

Single cast

Single cast

Figure in which partners separate, led by top pair, girl proscribing a semicircle clockwise, and boys anticlockwise, meeting at the place where the bottom of the set was and leading up to places.

 

Skip-change

Skip-change

Travelling step performed by stepping, closing following foot up behind leading foot, stepping forward again on leading foot and hopping on it.

 

Slip

Slip

Alternative term for gallop.

 

Smock/s

Smock/s

An old protective over-garment now largely replaced with overalls. Smocking is a decorative way of gathering fabric. The fabric is reduced into small pleats and then decorative embroidery is sewn over the top of the pleats. In the 19th century some smocks became very elaborate with beautiful embroidery and complicated smocking patterns.

 

Social

Social

An event which is about interacting with other people.

 

Sole/s

Sole/s

A sole is the bottom of the footwear, most shoes have a heel which is then put on-top of the sole at the back of the shoe. This means that the sole can refer to the entire bottom of the shoe or just the front underneath the ball of the foot.

 

Standardised

Standardised

When things are made to an agreed standard or pattern. If many items become standardised it means that their differences are removed so that they become more similar to each other.

 

Star

Star

Danced in 4's (usually), each dancer takes right hands as if about to shake hands with the person diagonally opposite, the two pairs of hands are then raised to just below shoulder height, sufficient tension is given with the fingers to propel the star round clockwise. Dancers then change hands and dance back anti-clockwise.

 

Stave/s

Stave/s

Staves are ceremonial sticks with an ornamental end. In the past they were often given to people to mark out their importance or a special role which they had to play. Civic processions involving the mayor often still involve people with special ceremonial staves with different heads depending on their role. Many Friendly Societies had a club stave. Each club would have a different symbol. Each member would carry their club stave with pride during their annual procession, sometimes even dancing with it!

 

Step Dance

Step Dance

Step dancing is a type of dance where the main focus and skill is in the dancer's footwork rather than their entire body. Step dancers can create many different types of noises using their feet alone. Different types of step dancing can be found all over the world, the most commonly known are tap and Irish dance.

 

Step to partner

Step to partner

Perform a stationary step to show off prowess to partner, often in a dance containing a hey.

 

Stepping

Stepping

Another word for step dancing. Stepping can also refer to the footwork used for other types of dance i.e. morris stepping.

 

Stereotypical

Stereotypical

A stereotype is a generalised idea of a person or group of people based on a preconceived bias of what they will be like. Stereotypes often have false elements, exaggerations and can be un- intentionally hurtful to the person or group which is being stereotyped. Stereotypical woman's clothing for example might contain old fashioned, ugly, floral clothes which many woman would avoid wearing at all costs.

 

Stick horse

Stick horse

A type of hobby horse where the head is mounted on a pole which is carried by the performer who is covered by a large piece of cloth.

 

Subvert/ed

Subvert/ed

To upset the normal running order of society. Sometimes this is in a conscious effort to encourage other members of society to question the world, its running order and their place within it.

 

Sunday best

Sunday best

In the past people often had everyday clothes which they wore in the week and a set of best Sunday clothes which they wore when going to church. Sunday best refers to a person's smartest or newest set of clothes.

 

Swing

Swing

A movement performed with a partner, where both dance clockwise round a circle round a central point, balancing each other's weight to drive the spin; first introduced in Circassian Circle.

 

Symbol/ Symbolic/ Symbolise

Symbol/ Symbolic/ Symbolise

Something which is taken to mean something else. For example a no-smoking symbol means no smoking in this area. In terms of clothing a military garment worn going into the pub might be seen as symbolising the wearer's connection to the army or if worn by a punk the jacket might be seen as a symbol of defiance against authority.

 

Themed

Themed

Clothing whose design is based upon or inspired by a theme or topic.

 

Ties

Ties

The shortened form of neck tie, a long band of fabric tied around the neck, often made of a silk-type shiny fabric.

 

Timing

Timing

Fitting each movement to its correct music so that there are no pauses and so that each is completed in time.

 

Tourney

Tourney

The tourney horse is made from a large round frame which covers the wearer. The frame is covered in cloth and is attached to the wearer's waist, normally with braces which go over the wearer's shoulders. A horse's head is attached to the front of the costume and sometimes false human legs are attached at the side.

 

Transformative

Transformative

From transform - to change from one thing to another.

 

Uniform

Uniform

A form of dress related to an occupation and worn by all people of that occupation. Examples include school uniforms and military uniforms.

 

Upper

Upper

The leather top half of a piece of footwear on both clogs or shoes.

 

Variety shows

Variety shows

Entertainment shows in the theatre, or later on TV which features a variety of acts which might include: singing, music, dancing, animal, or acrobatic acts. Britain’s Got Talent is a modern variety show.

 

Veil

Veil

A piece of thin fabric, often net or lace, which covers all or part of the face.

 

Velvet

Velvet

A type of fabric which is textured and feels like a very short fur. In the past it was often made with silk and it was an expensive, luxury fabric.

 

Waistcoat/s

Waistcoat/s

A piece of clothing which covers the torso or chest of the individual.

 

Waltz

Waltz

A popular partner dance of the 19th century, performed to 3/4 rhythm.

 

Welfare

Welfare

Welfare refers to looking after those in need. The National Health Service is an example of Britain's modern state welfare system.

 

Whitsun

Whitsun

Is another name for Pentecost which is the seventh Sunday after Easter. In the Christian church this celebrates the coming of the holy spirit to the followers of Jesus.

 

Zouave

Zouave

A style of jacket adopted from the Algerian Zouave troops 19th century uniform. Normally made of velvet with silk lining the jacket does not have a centre back seam. At the front the edges do not meet and taper away. This is similar to a 'bolero' top. The Zouave jacket became a fashion item and was used as an exotic addition to clothing in the Victorian period.