Ladies' Chain to Allemande Left is actually the original version of
the Ladies' Chain! I believe that the Courtesy Turn was added sometime late
in the 19th century, or maybe in the first half of the 20th century.
Prior to that the "Chaine des Dames" was always danced as Ladies
Pull By Right, Allemande Left the Man You Meet - and always there and back
It occurs in countless dances over the last few hundred years, going
back to the 18th century quadrilles and probably earlier.
The Ladies' Chains in Chestnut contras were probably danced that way
Of course If the man maintains that Allemande position he will end
up facing the wrong way in most dances. So he will usually have to make a
quick turn to his left at the end of the Allemande. I find it quite hard to
persuade the men NOT to touch the lady with their right arm. Many ECD
dances contain this move and I understand that some American ladies hate it
when the man guides her with his right arm.
So, between the two extremes of the man ending up facing out, and
the man putting his right arm around the lady, you have the compromise of
starting the Allemande normally, but then the man turning towards the lady
as the move ends - this is known in some circles as a Polite Turn.
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