I was pleased to see Sylvia's posting about the grand chain. Problems with
how to dance, phrase, and teach these formations stem from the fact that the
figures were adapted for country dancing from the quadrilles in the 19th
century and they just don't fit a longwise set. Fitting square figures into
rectangular spaces is difficult.
The Grand Chain, the Ladies Chain, and even the promenade and balance in
line, are all quadrille (and nowadays square dance) figures. That makes it
easy to date the country dances in which they appear, but no one has come up
with simple nor universally accepted answers to how we make them work for
country dances. So, once again flexibility, and a bit of adjusting, are
needed. Maybe someone should have created the figure that Priscilla so
deftly described - a six bar grand chain with some creative figeting on bars
7 & 8.