The Dancing Master
Pierre Rameau's Le Maitre a Danser is the standard work on the technique of eighteenth century dancing. It was first published in Paris in 1725, and bore the printed recommendation of the celebrated dancer and maitre de ballet Louis Pecour. As a guide to contemporary social etiquette in the ballroom, the dances that were in vogue, the various steps and arm movements that were in use and how they were executed, Rameau's book is an invaluable source of information. For although the eighteenth century saw the publication of a number of books on dancing which record the steps and arm movements used in contemporary dances, they do not explain how the steps were to be carried out, and this information was first made available in Le Maitre a Danser. This edition is a facsimile of the translation made by the great dance scholar and historian Cyril Beaumont, and first published by him in book form in 1931.
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Of the Manner of Holding the Body I
VHI Of the Fifth Position
Of Honours of Different Kinds
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according Afterwards arriere avant ballets ballroom dances battement begin bend both knees bend the knees bend the left body supported bourree Branle bring the right chaconne CHAPTER contretemps cote coti coupe coupi crossed dancer demi-coupe demi-jeti elbow explained feet figure fleuret foot in front fourth position back fourth position front front and rise front foot grace ground hand head Hence inclination instance inStep jeti knee bends knees Straight lady leave the weight left arm left foot left knee lower the heel manner of execution Manner of Moving masters ment menuet Moving the Arms observed opposition pass Passepied perform persons pirouette placed plates posi raised Rameau rear foot rigaudon right arm right demi-pointe right foot sideways right heel right knee rules second movement second position Second Posture shown in Fig sissonne slide the right social dances temps de courante throws the weight tion tournant transfer the weight turn upwards wrists