2 December 2010
WILSON, Thomas. An Analysis of Country Dancing: Wherein are Displayed All the Figures Ever Used in Country Dances. London: W. Calvert, 1808.
8o (153 x 95 mm). Frontispiece, hand-colored diagrams in text. (Lacks half-title, a few intermittent spots.) 19th-century half calf (rubbing along edges). Provenance: H. de Blois-Leach, teacher of Dancing at Oxford (inscription and blindstamp on title); The Royal Academy of Dancing, P.J.S. Richardson Bequest (bookplate laid-in).
FIRST EDITION. This is the first of several books published by Wilson on the subject of English country dancing. Performed as a series of figures by a column of men facing a column of women, the English country dance was one of the most popular early nineteenth-century ballroom dances. Although the manual has a section on ballroom etiquette, it is most useful for its text, tables, and color-coded diagrams, which explain the figures. This edition is dedicated to Madame Desayes, principal dancer at the King's Theatre, where Wilson held the post of dancing master. Beaumont, p.192; DDM 2661; Leslie, p.561.
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