Recommended Readings

Dance in Greek and Roman Antiquity

Curtis, Lauren. Imagining the Chorus in Augustan Poetry. Cambridge, 2017.


Gianvittorio, Laura, ed. Choreutika: Performing and Theorising Dance in Ancient Greece. Pisa, 2017. 

Lada-Richards, Ismene. Silent Eloquence: Lucian and Pantomime Dancing. London: Duckworth, 2007. 

Lonsdale, Steven.  Dance and Ritual Play in Greek Religion. Baltimore, MD, 1993.

Macintosh, Fiona, ed. The Ancient Dancer in the Modern World: Responses to Greek and Roman Dance. Oxford, 2010. 

Naerebout, F. G. Attractive Performances: Ancient Greek Dance: Three Preliminary Studies. Amsterdam, 1997.

Olsen, Sarah. Solo Dance in Archaic and Classical Greece: Representing the Unruly Body. Cambridge, 2020.


Schlapbach, Karin. The Anatomy of Dance Discourse: Literary and Philosophical Approaches to Dance in the Later Graeco-Roman World. Oxford, 2018. 


Smith, Tyler Jo. Komast Dancers in Archaic Greek Art. Oxford, 2010. 

Steiner, Deborah. Choral Constructions in Greek Culture: The Idea of the Chorus in Poetry, Art, and Social Practices of the Archaic and Early Classical Period. Cambridge, 2021. 

Webb, Ruth. Demons and Dancers: Performance in Late Antiquity. Cambridge, MA, 2008. 

* See, also, the Oxford Classics and Dance Bibliography by Fiona Macintosh.


Medieval Dance

Chaganti, Seeta. Strange Footing: Poetic Form and Dance in the Late Middle Ages. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2018.


Dickason, Kathryn. Ringleaders of Redemption: How Medieval Dance Became Sacred. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2021.

McGee, Timothy J. “Dance.” In Art & Humanities Through the Eras. Vol. 3, Medieval Europe 814–1450. Edited by Kristen M. Figg and John B. Friedman, 62–91. Detroit: Thomson-Gale, 2005.

Mullally, Robert. The Carole: A Study of a Medieval Dance. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate, 2011.


Renberg, Lynneth Miller, and Bradley Phillis. The Cursed Carolers in Context. New York: Routledge, 2021.


Salmen, Walter. “Dances and Dance Music, c. 1300–1530.” In Music as Concept and Practice in the Late Middle Ages. New ed. Edited by Reinhard Strohm and Bonnie J. Blackburn, 162–190. New Oxford History of Music III.1. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001. 

Silen, Karen. “Dance in Late Thirteenth-Century Paris.” In Dance, Spectacle, and the Body Politick, 1250–1750. Edited by Jennifer Nevile, 67–79. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2008.

Silen, Karen. "Elisabeth of Spalbeek: Dancing the Passion." In Women’s Work: Making Dance in Europe Before 1800. Edited by Lynn Matluck Brooks, 207-227. Studies in Dance History. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 2008.

* See, also, the Oxford Medieval Dance Bibliography by Timothy McGee, and the Oxford Dance of Death Bibliography by Sophie Oosterwijk.


Renaissance Dance

Brooks, Lynn Matluck, ed. Women’s Work: Making Dance in Europe Before 1800. Studies in Dance History. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 2008. 

Forrest, John. The History of Morris Dancing, 1458-1750. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999. 

Franko, Mark. The Dancing Body in Renaissance Choreography, c. 1416-1589. Birmingham, AL: Summa Publications, 1986. 

Gough, Melinda. Dancing Queen: Marie de Médicis' Ballets at the Court of Henri IV. Toronto, University of Toronto Press, 2019.

McGowan, Margaret M. Dance in the Renaissance: European Fashion, French Obsession. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008. 


Nevile, Jennifer. The Eloquent Body: Dance and Humanist Culture in Fifteenth-Century Italy. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2004.

Nevile, Jennifer, ed. Dance, Spectacle, and the Body Politick, 1250-1750. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2008. 

Payne, Ian. The Almain in Britain, c.1549-c.1675: A Dance Manual from Manuscript Sources. Aldershot, Hampshire: Ashgate, 2003. 

* See, also, the Oxford Renaissance Dance Bibliography by Jennifer Nevile, and the Renaissance Dance Primary Sources and Secondary Sources bibliographies from the Shakespeare and Dance Project.



Baroque Dance

Fairfax, Edmund. The Technique of Eighteenth-Century Ballet. c. Edmund Fairfax 2018. Manuscript, blog, and resources:


Franko, Mark. Dance as Text: Ideologies of the Baroque Body. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993.


Goff, Moira. The Incomparable Hester Santlow: A Dancer-Actress on the Georgian Stage. London and New York: Routledge, 2016. Also a blog:

Harris-Warrick, Rebecca. Dance and Drama in French Baroque Opera. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019.


Hilton, Wendy, Dance of Court and Theater: The French Noble Style, 1690-1725. Princeton: Princeton Book Company, 1981.

Marsh, Carol G. and Rebecca Harris-Warrick. Musical Theatre at the Court of Louis XIV: Le Mariage de la Grosse Cathos.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

Thorp, Jennifer, and Michael Burden, eds. Ballet de la Nuit. Hillsdale, NY: Pendragon Press, 2010.


Dance and the Court Masque

Daye, Anne. “The Jacobean Antimasque within the Masque Context: a Dance Perspective.” PhD diss., Roehampton University, 2008.


McManus, Clare. Women on the Renaissance Stage: Anna of Denmark and Female Masquing in the Stuart Court, 1590-1619. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002. 

Ravelhofer, Barbara. The Early Stuart Masque: Dance, Costume, and Music. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006. 


Welsford, Enid. The Court Masque: A Study in the Relationship between Poetry & the Revels. Cambridge: Russell & Russell, 1962.

* See, also, the Masques and Measures Bibliography from the Shakespeare and Dance Project.


Shakespeare and Dance

Brissenden, Alan. Shakespeare and the Dance. Atlantic Highlands, NJ: Humanities Press, 1981, 2001. 


Daye, Anne, comp. A Lively Shape of Dauncing: Dances of Shakespeare’s Time. Salisbury, Wiltshire: Dolmetsch Historical Dance Society, 1994. (practical handbook and CD)

Klett, Elizabeth, ed. Shakespeare and Dance special issue of Borrowers and Lenders 10, no. 2 (2017).

McCulloch, Lynsey. “Shakespeare and Dance.” Literature Compass 13, no. 2 (2016): 69-78.

McCulloch, Lynsey, and Brandon Shaw, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Dance. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019.

* See, also, the Shakespeare and Dance Studies Bibliography from the Shakespeare and Dance Project.


Updated May 25, 2022.