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Who was Robin Hood? Was he historical fact or simply a medieval fiction? Why has the Robin Hood Legend become so loved and well known across the world and through the generations?Most of our knowledge about the Robin Hood legend derives from the earliest ballads and tales which have passed through the centuries.
What is a legend?
‘An unverified story handed down from earlier times, especially one popularly believed to be historical.’
‘An extremely famous or notorious person.’
So, who was Robin Hood?
The stories of Robin Hood originate from medieval times.
What was it like in medieval times?
They made their houses themselves because they could not afford to pay someone to build them.
The simplest houses were made out of sticks and straw.
The Black Death of 1348 killed a large number of the peasant population. This meant that there were not enough peasants to work in the fields. Landowners desperate for workers to harvest their crops began offering wages to anyone who would work on their land. Peasants were, for the first time, able to offer their services to the landowner that would pay the highest wage.
With more money, peasants were able to afford better housing and many now lived in wattle and daub houses.
Wattle and Daub houses were taller and wider than the simple stick and straw houses. They also offered better protection from the weather.
They were made by first constructing a framework of timber, then filling in the spaces with wattle (woven twigs). Finally, the twigs were daubed with mud which, when dried, made a hard wall.
He is known for "robbing the rich to give to the poor" and fighting against injustice and tyranny.
He had followers called his, ‘merry men.’
He has been the subject of numerous films, television series, books, comics and plays.
The Legend of Robin Hood is a traditional English tale dating back into the middle ages. In the 17th century, ballads were composed explaining how various Merry Men met Robin Hood.