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James Dodson

The Great Russian Ball at the Academy of Music.

The Great Russian Ball at the Academy of Music.


“A Dance is the Devils Procession. He that enters into a Dance, enters into his Possession. The Devil is the Guide, the middle and the end of the Dance.”—Increase Mather, An Arrow Against Profane and Promiscuous Dancing Drawn Out of the Quiver of the Scriptures (1684). 

Works Against Dancing:


An Arrow Against Profane and Promiscuous Dancing Drawn out of the Quiver of the Scriptures.-1684-Increase Mather? (1639-1723).-A series of arguments drawn from Scripture against the practice of promiscuous dancing showing its inconsistency with the Bible.

A Cloud of Witnesses; Darting out Light upon a Case, too Unseasonably made Seasonable to be Discoursed on.-1700-Cotton Mather (1663-1728).-A clarification of the point at issue together with quotes from orthodox and Reformed theologians and church councils on the subject of dancing.

Promiscuous Dancing. in A Testimony and Warning Against Some Prevailing Sins and Immoralities: Addressed to Christians in General.-1805-Reformed Presbytery, of Scotland.-In this section, the Reformed Presbytery denounces the practice of promiscuous dancing as an unchristian entertainment which carries in its bosom an incentive to lust and immorality.

A Discourse on the Evils of Dancing.-1846-John Fryer Mesick (1813-1915).-A German Reformed minister shows that dancing is an act of conformity with this world and, therefore, contrary to the Christian faith.

Social Dancing Inconsistent with a Christian Profession and Baptismal Vows:-1849-Benjamin Morgan Palmer (1818-1902).-An examination of the practice of promiscuous dancing and its inconsistency with profession of the Christian religion.

A Time to Dance. A Sermon on Dancing.-1867-J.R. Sikes (1832-1895).-A scathing attack on the modern dance by a Lutheran minister who advances a series of arguments against Christians participating in ballroom dancing.

“A Time to Dance.”-1868-William Patton (1798-1879).-This article discusses dancing in the Bible versus the dance that the world loves. Patton shows that the Bible does not countenance promiscuous dancing nor does it sanction worldly dancing.

The Dancing Question.-1879-Robert L. Dabney (1820-1898).-Without fear of being branded a “legalist” or “puritanical,” Dabney examines the modern dance and its several attendant circumstances and not only finds it wanting but declares it to be positively prohibited to serious Christians, especially Presbyterians.

Dancing as a Christian Amusement.-1879-George Clarence Heckman (1825-1902).-An examination and argument against some of the arguments put forth in defense of dancing as a pastime consistent with the Christian religion.

Herodias and John the Baptist; or, the Dance and the Murder.-1882-Thomas E. Peck (1822-1893).-A discourse designed to show the temptations which surround unlawful amusements. Professor Peck wishes to impress, especially upon youth, the danger of promiscuous dancing and its tendency to serve the lusts of the flesh.