The origins of Morris Dancing are not known but theories and speculation abound.
Morris became common throughout England during the Middle Ages. It became associated with certain festivals and seasonal observances. Performances of Morris dancing have been noted as particularly prevalent on Whitsun, or Whitsunday,which appears on the Christian calendar as Pentecost. It was noted in the King James I
“Book of Sports” that “‘May games, Whitsun ales and morris dances, and the setting up of May-poles…’” were permissible springtime activities.
Suffice it to say that it is an old form of folk dance that is generally traced back to the Cotswold region of England.
There is much to be found on the Internet about Morris dancing. Of course, Wikipedia is a good place to begin. To learn more, click on the links below:
A list of Morris, Rapper, and Sword teams in the United States can be found at:
Morris Dancing in the United States
Most historical information and quotes on this site were shamelessly borrowed from a paper written by Libby Chamberlin, a former Muddy River dancer