This set was composed by Amie Morrissey for a celebration to commemorate the Battle of Affane, which took place in 1565 at Affane, near Lismore in Countyn Waterford. The set was demonstrated at the Sweets of May Dance Festival in Tralee in 2015.
This battle was fought in 1565 at the ford of Affane, near Lismore in County Waterford, between the Fitzgeralds of Desmond, led by Gerald, Earl of Desmond, and the Butlers of Ormond, led by Thomas, Earl ofOrmond. It was one of the last private battles fought in Britain or Ireland. The battle was won by the Butlers. Near the end of the battle, the Earl of Desmond was wounded and taken captive. Elizabeth I, who ruled at the time, summoned both earls to London. Thomas Butler, known as Tomas Dubh, was one of her favourites. They were cousins, related through her mother, Anne Boleyn. He was said to have been an excellent dancer and one of the queen’s dancing partners at court. She called him her ‘black husband’. Thomas was released, while Gerald Fitzgerald and his two brothers spent seven years in the Tower of London.
Notes by Pat Murphy from Set Dancing News Dec 2015/Jan 2016
136 Bars + 8 bar lead-in
The first figure symbolises scenes from the battle: All couples lead around as if leading into battle. Top couples advance and retire slowly, representing the Earl of Desmond's approach to seize Maurice Fitzgerald's cattle in lieu of unpaid dues, then swing in four to show the alliance formed between Maurice Fitzgerald and the Earl of Ormond. Top gent steps back to show that Maurice Fitzgerald took no part in the battle and he stamps and taps his knee to represent the shooting of the Earl of Desmond.
136 Bars + 8 bar lead-in
The second figure symbolises scenes from life in the area in the following years after the battle. All couples dance around the house, showing the importance of Dromana House, the home of the Fitzgerald family in the lives of the community. The chain symbolises the changes of ownership and lives over the years. The arches under which the ladies pass represent Dromana Bridge and the advance and retire represent the tides on the River Blackwater and its importance to the community.
160 Bars + 8 bar lead-in
The third figure danced to polkas symbolises set dancing in the Waterford and South Tipperary areas today, as represented by the local Ballyduff Set, the Sliabh gCua Set, Dungarvan Set, Cashel Set and many others.
Modified on 2016-11-23 14:35:33.
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