The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow

2025 WordsMay 1, 20169 Pages
Throughout the United States, the story of the Headless Horseman, described in “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” is well-known in American folklore. It is a scary story that many children tell around the campfire in an attempt to scare one another, saying that if someone is not careful, the Headless Horseman will come for them. However, many Americans do not realize that this legend originated from a story that appears in Washington Irving’s book, The Sketchbook of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. Washington Irving was born to a Scottish immigrant family on April 3, 1783, in New York City. Later that year, The Treaty of Paris was signed, signaling that America had at long last won her independence from Great Britain (Irving, Norberg, and Stade iii). From that point on, the United States of America began the journey to find an identity to call its own. Before, when these people were a colony of Great Britain, they identified themselves as a part of the greatest empire on Earth. However, by the time of the Revolution many of the colonists were questioning their identity and position within the British Empire. Through gaining their freedom, this new nation was able to create a new identity, generating what was thought to be a purely American culture. Living through this time of change, Washington Irving wrote about the emerging society from a critical standpoint. Although Irving lived through the times of change, he was critical of how these changes, specifically those of capitalism and

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