Posted by Patricia Bingham on September 12, 1998 at 19:22:05:
In response to sources on the minuet, written by Laura W on September 11, 1998 at 23:42:43
The minuet was not as out of fashion, in London that it, as some say. Here is what is said of the dance in The Regency Companion:
Before the introduction of the quadrille in 1816 and the waltz by 1812, the English country dance, the minuet, contredanse, Scotch reels, and the Ecossaise were favored by dancers in Almack's Assembly Rooms. Though the minuet had effectively been killed in France along with much of the Aristocracy, refugees from the Terror kept the mincing artificial dance alive in London. The Prince Regent gave a large ball in 1813 that opened and closed with the minuet. Each ball at Almack's opened with a minuet and continued with country dances, contredanses and cotillions.
This was how it was at Almack's, which was stuffy and slow to changes (just as Royalty would be and so the Prince Regent's ball which opened with a minuet), however, I would guess that at private balls, the minuet was dying.
P.S. Laura: my book Carriage Terminology came in a while back, which helped to put together much of the pieces that were missing in our latter posts, if you remember. I intend to post my results (I would have done so sooner but I am having trouble pasting from Word Perfect now that I changed to AOL. And so I have to type everything while on line.) Basically, the results are that you are correct about the postchaise being termed that way both for hire and privately owned. But I was right about the town chariot being a postchaise and being converted into one, which was the source of all my confusion! I'll post the details which will explain everything soon. - Patricia
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