Morris Dancers

The Linkspages at

The History of Morris Dancing 1458-1750

This page features pre-17th century illustrations of morris dance and morris dancers. This seems to be quite different from modern “traditional” morris dance, although modern morris dancers seem to have retained the bells worn on the legs of their medieval predecessors.

There are also several descriptions of items decorated with morris dancers (e.g., “iij ciphos argenti sculptos cum moreys daunce” from the will of Alice Wetenhale, 1458), as well as records of money given to morris dancers (e.g., “Item Gyven in reward to the morres Daunsers of Mafeld daunsyng here on Churche masse day Summa ij s. viij d.” from a 1534 entry in the Sussex Records of Early English Drama)

Elsewhere on this site, there are linkspages with musicians, medieval dancers, Renaissance dancers, jesters, etc.

See also Morris Before the Restoration, Observations on Popular Antiquities of Great Britain, and Faiths and Folklores: A Dictionary of National Beliefs.

Several additional articles in journals: “The Literary History of the English Morris Dance” (Folklore vol. 94, no. 2), “The Morris Tune” (Journal of the American Musicological Society vol. 39, no. 2), “The Earliest Reference to the Morris Dance?” (Folk Music Journal vol. 8, no. 4), “Kingsworth to Kenilworth: Early Plebeian Morris” (Folklore vol. 100:i).