Information is from
Irish dancing reveals to people about the constant changing of the population in invasion and migration. There is only very vague references to the early history of Irish dance.
Each of the people that traveled through and to different places brought their own preferred type of dance and music. The Druids for instance, danced in religious rituals to honor the oak tree and sun. There are still traces of their circular dances in the ring dances of modern day dances.
Next the Celtics arrived in Ireland 2,000 years ago and brought their own folk dances. After the conversion to Christianity, the new priests started to use the pagan's style of ornamentation in illuminating their manuscripts, while the peasants stuck to their old music and dance.
The Anolo-Norman conquest took place in this period. Their customs in dance and music were then introduced to the Irish. As time went on, the Carol, one of traditional dances, was being performed in many Irish towns. The old Thea Century literature mentioned the three principles in Irish dance very often. These principles are: The Hey, The Trenchmore, and the Rinnce Fada (long dance.
One of the only early references was a letter written to Queen Elizabeth I by Sir Henry Sidney in 1569. In it he wrote about the dancing he saw going on: " They were very beautiful, magnificently dressed and 1st class dancers". Henry also wrote about the girls he had seen dancing enthusiastic jigs in Galway.
In the 16th century, many dances were performed in castles. Some of the dances were adapted by English invaders and brought back to the court of Queen Elizabeth, one of these "lucky" dances was the Trenchmore. The Hey was also a popular dance in which female dancers wound in around their partners. This dance and others, were accompanied by music made by bagpipes and harps. Some of this music was done at wakes because it was very important to the Irish.