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Polka

 A lively couple Dance style from 19th century Central Europe played and danced in 2/4 time. The basic pattern is step, half-step, step, hold repeated. The name derives from the Czech word Pulka meaning half. The first move may be preceded by a hop. There is no line of dance so couples are free to explore the ballroom.

Originally a peasant dance which was 'collected' and introduced to the ballrooms of Prague in the 1830s, it spread throughout Europe and America becoming one of the most popular dances of the era. The polka spawned the Gallop and Polka-Redowa. The dance drifted down the social scale and became incorporated into Country Dance.