The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow

The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow

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Summary

The story is set circa 1790 in the Dutch settlement of Tarry Town (based on Tarrytown, New York), in a secluded glen called Sleepy Hollow. It tells the story of Ichabod Crane, a lean, lanky, and extremely superstitious schoolmaster from Connecticut, who competes with Abraham "Brom Bones" Van Brunt, the town rowdy, for the hand of 18-year-old Katrina Van Tassel, the daughter and sole child of a wealthy farmer, Baltus Van Tassel. As Crane leaves a party he attended at the Van Tassel home on an autumn night, he is pursued by the Headless Horseman, who is supposedly the ghost of a Hessian trooper who had his head shot off by a stray cannonball during "some nameless battle" of the American Revolutionary War, and who "rides forth to the scene of battle in nightly quest of his head".

About the author

Washington Irving

Washington Irving was born 3 April 1783 in New York. He trained as lawyer before deciding to pursue a literary career and, with his brother, producing a series of satirical essays and poems. Irving wrote under pseudonyms at first: ‘Diedrich Knickerbocker’ for ‘A History of New York from the Beginning of the World to the End of the Dutch Dynasty’, and ‘Geoffrey Crayon, Gent.’ for ‘Sketch Book’. The latter included pieces inspired by his travels to London during his unsuccessful efforts to save the family business from bankruptcy, and Rip Van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, for which he became famous. Irving worked in Spain as a diplomatic attaché, where he wrote ‘Legends of the Alhambra’ in 1832, and London as secretary to the US legation. His final work was a vast biography of George Washington published in 1855. He died on 28 November 1859.
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