THE STORY OF ROBIN HOOD..
IT was about seven hundred years ago, in
England, when Richard the First was King,
that ROBIN HOOD lived. At that time a large
part of the land was covered with great forests,
in which deer and other game ran wild; and
it was near the borders of one of these, called
Sherwood Forest, that Robin Hood was born.
SFrom his earliest years he had a great love
Sfor all the manly out-door sports and games of
those times; and he became very expert at
them; above all, in the use of the bow and arrows.
U \He grew so skillful in this that there was no archer
in all the country round who could compare with him,
and he always carried off the prizes at the shooting
matches. Besides this, he had bright wits, and a
merry heart; loved a song and a. jes; and wea liked
by all who knew him.
But something took place which drove him into a
.way of life that, otherwise, he might not have chosen for himself. All the game,
in the forest belonged to the King; it was against the law to shoot it; and
Sthe King had men in the forest, called foresters, to catch those who did so and
have them punished.
One day, as Robin Hood was passing through the forest, he met with a party
of these foresters. One of them was a man who had a great name as an archer,
and was jealous of Robin Hood's growing fame. He began to taunt Robin, and
'at last dared him to show his skill by shooting a deer which came in sight at
4 great distance. Robin Hood's temper was up; arid, without thinking, he put
an arrow in his bow and let it fly at the deer, which it struck and killed. 'he
forester only became more angry at tlis feat, which was one that he could not
do himself, so he said he would take Robin and have him hung for killing
the King's deer. Robin started to fly, but the foresters followed him so closely
that he saw no chance of escaping, so he turned, and again drawing his bow,
sent an arrow into the heart of the man who had begun the quarrel. He dropped
dead while his comrades stood still, not knowing but that they migl~ be served
as badly, so Robin Hood escaped. .
But as there would now be no mercy shown to him if any of the King's men
laid hands upon him, he became an outlaw, that is, he lived in the forest, and
got his food by shooting the deer and other game, trying of course not to come
The Baldwin Library
THE STORY OP ROBIN HOOD.
in the way of the foresters. Now there were many other young men who, from one
cause and another, had taken to this kind of life, and Robin Hood soon gathered
them into a band of which he vas made captain, and which became so strong
that in the end they were more of a terror to the foresters than the foresters to
them. They wore a uniform of Lincoln green, with scarlet caps; and besides
his bow and arrows, each nian had a short sword; while the captain carried a
bugle-horn with which to call his men when he needed them.
They led a pleasant life in the greenwood, but it was an entirely unlawful
one, for besides shooting the game,
they used to rob rich people who
passed through the forest. But
Robin Hood, though a robber, was
in many ways so good that he was
thought well of by most people;
for he would not take from those
who were poor-instead,
he often gave them help.
He would let none of his
S men hurt or rob a woman,
S and when the weak were
wronged he took their
He gave a proof of this
one day when he stopped
a knight named Sir Rich-
t ard of the Lea, who was
passing, with two follow-
ers, through the forest.
SRobin saw that the knight
wore a very sad face, and
he asked why this was so.
The knight replied that
he had met with losses,
and had been forced to mortgage his lands to the Abbot
of St. Mary's at York, who, if the money were not paid
next day, would seize all he had. Robin Hood was
touched by the sadness of the knight, and agreed to lend him the sum needed
to redeem his lands. The knight departed in great joy, and this kind deed
was told of, far and wide, to Robin Hood's great credit.
Robin Hood's dearest friend, and the next in command to himself, was called
Little John. The way in which they came together was this. Robin liked to
roam the forest by himself in search of adventures; and one day, as he was pass-
ing thus along'a forest path, he came to a brook over which a narrow plank was
laid for a bridge. At the same time a tall stranger, carrying a staff in his
ROBIN HOOD MEETS THE KNIGHT OF LEA,
g ~anr -~ S. -,-
FRIAR TUCK CARRIES ROBIN HOOD OVER THE-BRO
,------ m -r -- --- ---.-- -
THE STORY OF ROBIN HOOD.
S.hands, drew near from the other side,
They met in the middle, and as they
could not pass, it became a question
S which should go back. "Let me
pass," said the stranger, or it will be
the' worse for thee."
/; ", l,"" IRobinillaughed at the idea of any
j.,one l 0 trying to .:care him by threats,
Sand tol' the stranger to go back or
'4- "- he would put an arrow through him.
". -: Then," said the other,
thou art a coward, for none
i- 1 other would offer to use a
bow and arrows against a
4' f, man an'med only with a quar-
.. .. ter staff.":i
Nov. Robin Hood was any-
St.lingh ~t a coward, and could
st -o t not bear to do that which
would give anybody a right
to call him one; so he step'
ped a.'aide and cut for him .elf a staff of'ak:.
N Now," said he, "we hre equal we aill fight it out, aind-whichever first
kn oek a the other into he water shall be victor."
The stranger was seven ft-et tall, and though .Robin Hood wah expert in the
use of the quarter-staff, h. fund him more than a match. After they had
thumped each other well for awhile, the stranger at:last hit Robin a blow which
sent him into the brook. He w added to the -bauk while the strange r stbod and
latighed at him. Then Robin HIod sounded hio horn,,and; his men came run-
niLn ffrom all sides. When he told them how he 'had been' served they wished
to give the struangei a taste of the water too, but Robin, who was' ery much
pleased with hi's strength and skill, stopped them, and asked the stranger if he
would.not be one of his inerry-iuen. .
Ma1,: willingly," cried he. nr ad ti)ugh my name is John Little, I hope you
will fi d that I candy great thing I
The merry-ien lhaIughbdi when:they heard the big .stranger's name: and one
of then said that. it should be changed from John Tittle to Little John, which
was done, and he t~i ever after -allfd that way.
Another time', as Robin Hood wawmallking through the greenwood, he found
a fat friar sitting near a.brook,.and thought he wold have some sport with
him, so .he saidl:- .
Carry me over the brook. fat friar, or I will beat thee till thou art sore."
The friar, witlibht a word, tuck-ed up his gowu 4nd carried him over, but as
Robin started 6if, he cribd :- .
THE STORY OF ROBIN HOOD.
Stop, my fine fellow, and carry me back or it will cause thee sorrow."
Robin took the :riar on his back, and carried him, over, and set him down,
Now take me, over once more,.fat friar. As thou art twice my weight, it,is
right I should have two rides to thy one."
The friar again took him on his back, but in the middle of the stream he
threw him in t he water, saying: Now, my pretty youth, let us see if thou canst
Then he went laughing on his way. But Robin was angry, and ran after him,
and attacked him with his staff. The friar defended himself, and they fought
for a long time without either getting the best of it. Finally, when both were
tired out, Robin Hood told the friar who he was, and. asked him if he would
not like to join his band and be their chaplain. The friar was a jolly fellow, and
was quite willing to take Robin's otfer. So he became one of the merry-men,
and was almost as famous as. Robin Hood himself, being known as Friar
SRobin, before he became an outlaw, had been in love with a young maiden
named Marian, but he had not seen her since.: Her love for him did not
die out, however; and finally her longing to see him became so great that
she put on boy's clothes, .-
and went to seek him in \ ii
Sthe forest. She met him:
::at last; but he did not
know her in her strange
dress, and she would not, 'I '
at first, tell him who she
was, but drew her sworc
and dared him tp fight.
He, of course, soon over-
came her; so she took
off her cap, and let 'her
beautiful hair fall over 'I
'her shoulders, and then /
Robin Hood knew her.
He still loved her as
much as ever, and they
were soon marrried by I i
Friar Tuck, the merry- KI ,
men celebrating their %
wedding with great fes-
tiy.t. ::. "
It was the way of the
outlaws when they
canghtl- any one. who "
THE STORY OF ROBIN HOOD.
seemed likely to have much
gold ofr silver about them, to
take them to dine with Robin
Hood. After they had been
feasted he would see how
Sa much they had, and would
i make them pay for their en-
Sh tertainment according to their
means. One day they brought
i before him a rich Abbot, the
ad same who had been so harsh
with Sir Richard of the Lea.
SRobin Hood resolved that
Besides taking his gold, he
would put him to shame; so
after they had stripped him
Sof all his money, they tied him
S/ upon a, mule's back, with his
face to the tail, and in that
ridiculous posture sent him
out of the forest, amidst hoot-
ing and laughter.
After Robin Hood had lived this life for several ymars, he met one day: i
knight clad in black armor, and wearing the red cross of a Crusader. Now
Robin had a great respect for those who had gone to the Holy Land to fight,
so he addressed the knight in., a friendly way, and asked him to come and be
entertained. The knight consented, and Robin conducted him to where the
merry-men held their feasts, and they all sat down to eat and drink. The
knight proved to be a jovial companion, and did his share in the way of joke
and song. When the meal was over, he spoke to Robin Hood, and said:-
What wouldst thou give, Robin Hood, if I could get the King to forgive
thy misdoings ? Wouldst thou be one of his men and serve him faithfully ? "
This was what Robin wished more than all else in the world. I would
be glad," said he, "to give up the life I lead. I did not like it from the first.
Some men praise my deeds; but, for my own part, I hate my way of living.
King Richard is a brave prince, and if he would but forgive me, he would find
me as true, and as full of love for him, as any man in his service."
"I am Kihg Richard," said the knight, as he stood up with a majestic air;
and when he had' said this,Robin Hood and all his men fell down on their
knees before him.
Stand up, my brave men," said the King. You have been thieves, which
you should not have been, but you are able to serve me if you will. I will
forgive what you have done up to this time, but take care that your actS from
henceforth are such that I shall feel no grief for the way I now treat you."
THE STORY OF ROBIN HOOD.
Then Robin and his men arose and gave three cheers for the King.
When the King returned to London, Robin and many of his men went with
him, while those who remained were made foresters. Robin rose so high in
the King's favor that he became rich, and was made Earl of Huntingdon. He
continued to be as good-hearted as before; and never refused to help the poor
and unfortunate, when it was in his power to aid them.
But when he grew old, he began to long for the green wood, and wished
that he might go to end his days there. So he got the King's consent to leave
the court, and sought his old haunts in Sherwood; his dear friend Little John
going with him. They spent some time there happily, but one day, as they
were walking together, Robin Hood said:-
"We have shot many shots together, but to-day I feel as though I could
shoot no more."
"What ails thee, dear master ? said Little John.
"I know not," said Robin Hood,-" but my fingers are feeble: take me to
Kirkley's Priory, Little John; perhaps my cousin there may relieve me by
letting a little blood."
So Little John took him and gave him into the care of his cousin, who was
prioress. But the prioress, whether she meant it or not, bled him too much,
and when Little John came again, he found his master dying. He asked Little
John to open the window and give him his bow and arrows. Then with all
the strength he had left, he drew the bow, and shot an arrow out of the win-
dow, and told Little John to bury him where it fell. He soon breathed his last,
and his heart-broken friend laid him in the grave as he had directed.
*4,+~lsi~'*p .nn uirZ ijF!
*~~~~. .. TI:~.
S. .S. -. . . . . .