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History of Loure Dance History of Loure Dance


The loure, also known as the gigue lente or slow gigue, is a slow French Baroque dance, probably originating in Normandy and named after the sound of the instrument of the same name (a type of musette).

The loure is a dance of slow or moderate tempo, sometimes in simple ternary meter, more often in compound binary.

The weight is on the first beat, which is further emphasised by the preceding anacrusis that begins the traditional loure.

One of its features is a lilting dotted rhythm.

In his Musicalisches Lexicon (Leipzig, 1732), Johann Gottfried Walther wrote that the loure "is slow and ceremonious; the first note of each half-measure is dotted which should be well observed".

Examples of loures are found in the works of Lully (e.g., Alceste) and of Bach (e.g.: French Suite No. 5 and the Partita No. 3 for violin solo).


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