THE first Monday after Twelfth-day is Plough Monday, and it is the ploughman's holiday.
At this season, in the Islands of Scilly, at St Ives, Penzance, and other places, the young people exercise a sort of gallantry called "geese-dancing." The maidens are dressed up for young men, and the young men for maidens; and, thus disguised, they visit their neighbours in companies, where they dance, and make jokes upon what has happened during the year, and every one is humorously "told their own," without offence being taken. By this sort of sport, according to yearly custom and toleration, there is a spirit of wit and drollery kept up among the people. The music and dancing done, they are treated with liquor, and then they go to the next house, and carry on the same sport. A correspondent, writing to the "Table-Book," insists on calling these revels "goose-dancing." The true Cornishman never uses the term, which is, as I have elsewhere shown, derived from dance deguiser,--hence guise-dancing, or geese-dancing, by corruption.