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Bouree Title

         There is also, the "Bourrée du Berry" which is said (Giraudet) to be older than the Bourrée d'Auvergne and also said that it was not danced any longer by the 1870's. The merry and pleasant Bourrée d'Auvergne got its birth from the Branle of the Sabots in Auvergne, France.

    The Bouree is regarded as one of the most characteristic of the popular traditions of Auvergne which opened many balls of the time. The name indicates, in prior French, "wool" coming from the shearing and is sometimes called the "French Clog Dance" as some dancers do this in wooden clogs. Margurite de Naverre, who was sister to the King of Sweden, Charles IX

(1550-1611 ) introduced this dance into the French Court IN 1565. It was very popular until the reign of the King of France Louis XIII (1601-1643). Bach wrote music for this dance as well. The Polka is said to be a descendant of the Bourrée.

    The Bourrée was very favorable among the beautiful women and the young Lords of the time, as it was a very rapid moving dance as well as very lively. There are two versions:
     1) Lower (plaine = plains)
     2) Higher (montagne = Mountain).

     The Bourrée de Averneis danced partly to a measure of ¾ and partly to a measure with 2/4. It is danced by four couples placed in square, as for squares cross (see clip on right and bottom.) also see Quadrilles.

Birth Place

Creation Date


Dance Type

Auvergne, France 1640's (1565) Peasants (Margarite de Naverre?) Procession

Posters, Lobby Cards etc.

Sheet Music Covers

Music Titles

n/a 1876 - Bourrée (Bach) Bourrée (Gelnek) (Handel)
    Bourrée 1 & 2 (Bach)
    Bouree (Jon Lord)
    Bouree a deux temps
    Bourree Corrèzienne
    Bouree d'aurillac
    Bourree d'auvergne
    Bourree au Pavillon d'auvergne (1934)
    Bouree In E Minor (Bach)
    La Bourree de Basque
    ~ See: Full Bouree Music List




n/a n/a Albania



Ballets / Stage




Other Related Dances of the time...

Allemande Bouree de la Brande Chaconna pas de bourree n/a
Branle Bouree en v D'issoudun Minuet Polka  
Branle de Sabots Bouree de la Chatre Montagnardes Trescone  
Bourrée du Berry        

Dancers, Choreographers etc.


J. Pierre Rameau Madam de Sévigné (1769) Catherine de Médici
Jean-Baptiste Lully Marguerite de Naverre Charles IX (1550-1611)
Louis de Cahusac Louis XIII (1601-1643)

Books, Magazine Articles on the dance...



Date Published


Italian and French Research? A. Oudin 1643 n/a
picturesque Travels to Auvergne Henri Doniol 1843 n/a
Traité de la danse Giraudet, Eugène 1870 n/a
The Dance, Ancient & Modern Moore, Arabella C. n/a n/a
Collection of Bouree's Antoine Bonnefoy 1929 n/a



Poets / Writers

Bach, Johann Sebastian (1685-1750) n/a n/a
Poulenc, Francis (1899-1963)    
Gelnek, Ivan (1683-1759)    
Handel, George Frideric (1685-1759)    
Lully, Jean-Baptiste De (1632-1687)    
Praetorius, Michael (1571-1621)    
Rameau, J. Pierre (1674-1748)    

Misc. Research Words that may be related ... to help your searches

Dulcimer Alsace Lute  
d'Aurillac Baroque  

Basic Steps... (basically triples and grapevines) view: Library of Congress MPEG video Clip
from Traité de la danse: 1870 -- (translated from French to English). A) "The Pas of Bourrée is carried out to a measure 2nd 2/4:

1) 1st Time. -- To bend the left leg by lengthening the right leg on the left side, (crossing in front of the left leg).

2) 2nd Time. -- To be removed on the point of the left foot, by preserving the right leg lengthened in front of the left. B) Pas of Bourrée carried out to a measure with 2/4. This step is the same one as the precedent; but the first folded movement is done over two times instead of one. The Bourrée step is also made with the left foot; one bends the right leg by lengthening the left leg on the right side (crossing in front of the right leg). Then one is removed on the point of the right foot, by preserving the left leg lengthened in front of the line Primarily local dance. This country dance is a little like the 2nd fashion in our Parisian shows (club or stage version), such as it is danced in Auvergne. We made some modifications which made us admit it dances. The name remains the same, but the true Bourrée does not exist any more." C) 32 Measures with 3/4:

The Leaders and Followers of the couples n° 1 and n° 2, having the fists on the hips, go ahead, behind, ahead by steps of Bourrée and remain in the medium of squares (8 measurements).

The couples n° 3 and n° 4 repeat what has just been known as for the first 2 couples (8 measurements).

The Leaders n° 1 and n° 2, go ahead, give right hand on the right side with the Followers opposite, leave the right hand, give left hand has àmaingauche (?), and behind will return in the center of squares; the two couples n° 1 and n° 2 regain their places (8 measurements).

Idem (?) for the couples n° 3 and n° 4 (8 measurements). The 4 couples shout: Youp the catarinetta, youp. 2° 32 Measures with 2/4.

The couple n° 1 advance in the center of squares, the Leader opposite the Follower, and goes ahead and behind by Bourrée steps; the Leader n° 1 repeats with the three other Followers what it carried out with his; the three other riders, successively, start again the movements carried out by the Leader n° 1. 3° 32 Measures with 2/4.

The Leader and the Follower of each couple are held by the right hand, and the Leader turns the Follower by making the follower pass under the leaders right arm. Each Leader starts again with the Follower of the couple on the right-hand side, which is made with that leaders follower, and so on with the other followers. The leader and the follower of each couple are held by the left hand, and shoving makes the turn the follower by making the follower pass under the leaders left arm; each follower starts again with the leader of the couple on the left what the follower did with its leader and so on, with the other leaders. The leader and the follower of each couple, before the fists on the hips, go ahead and behind by Bourrée steps, then regain their original places while turning. Everyone shouts: Youp, the catarinetta, youp. 4°o 32 Measures with ¾.

Repeat textually the 1°. Everyone shouts: youp the catarinetta youp. 5° All the couples FINISH the Bourrée by carrying out the waltz at 3 times. Notice.
All the movements must be done with Bourrée steps.