Who was Robin Hood? Was he historical fact or a 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 come from the earliest ballads and tales which have passed through the centuries.
Of these, the most significant are: A Gest of Robin Hood, Robin Hood and the Monk, Robin Hood and the Potter, Robin Hood and Guy of Gisborne, Robin Hood and the Curtal Friar, Robin Hood’s Death.
All these tales were written down before 1550.
Despite Robin’s “legend” status, there are many reasons to believe that Robin Hood could well have been a real historical figure.
Robin is famous for his robbing the rich to feed the poor and fighting against injustice and tyranny. Anyone who knows of Robin has also heard the stories of his outlaw band. The names of Little John, Friar Tuck, Maid Marion, Allan a Dale, Will Scarlet, Much the Miller and the evil Sheriff of Nottingham are as much a part of the legend as Robin Hood himself.
The stories of Robin show him as a fearless outlaw leading his band of “merry men” (and women) against the tyranny of Prince John, The Sheriff of Nottingham and Sir Guy of Gisbourne. A brilliant archer, Robin lived a life of adventure in Sherwood Forest.
Stories about the adventures of Robin have been told for over six hundred years. In Robin’s time, few people could read or write and little was written down about the adventures of our hero. Instead, people learnt about Robin and his band through the ballad and song of wandering minstrels who weaved a patchwork of fact and fiction into the modern culture.
Martin Luther King (1929 – 1968)
Martin Luther King Jr. goes down in history as the leader of the civil rights movement in the United States and a well-known advocate of nonviolent protest. King’s fight against segregation and racial discrimination helped convince many white Americans to support the cause of civil rights in the United States.
King was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and he became Baptist minister at age 18. He graduated from Morehouse College in 1948 and from Crozer Theological Seminary in 1951. In 1955 he got a doctoral degree in systematic theology from Boston University. While in Boston, King met Coretta Scott, whom he married in 1953. In 1954 King became a priest at the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama.
In 1957 King helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), an organization of black churches and ministers that aimed to fight against racial segregation. King and other SCLC leaders encouraged the use of nonviolent marches, demonstrations, and boycotts to protest discrimination.
King and other black leaders organized the 1963 March on Washington, a massive protest in Washington, D.C., for jobs and civil rights. King told his famous “I Have a Dream” speech to an audience of more than 200,000 people. The speech and the march resulted in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited segregation in public places and discrimination in schools and jobs. As a result of King’s he was awarded the 1964 Nobel Prize for peace.
In1966 and 1967 King turned his focus to the redistribution of the nation’s economic wealth to poor black people. In the spring of 1968 he went to Memphis, Tennessee, to support black garbage workers. King was assassinated in Memphis on April 4, 1968.
J. K. Rowling (1965 – )
Harry Potter’s magic has touched a huge audience of all ages all over the world. In America, there are over 103 million books in print, and each title has been #1 on The New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists. The sixth title, HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE, set a new world record for a first printing, with 10.8 million copies.
J. K. Rowling has won many awards for her books. She has been a guest on many TV shows, and has also been named an Officer of the British Empire.
Rowling first thought of Harry while riding a train back in 1990. She worked on the book for several years – while her daughter napped. Several publishers turned down the finished manuscript before one took interest.
In 1998, HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE was published in the United States, kicking off Harry-mania. Suddenly, kids were reading again, and their parents wanted to read the same books! The second and third books were published in the spring and fall of 1999. On July 8, 2000, the release of HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE became a major celebration, . The book sold three million copies in the first 48 hours of release, winning the title of “fastest-selling book in history” – a title later claimed by HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX when it was released on June 21, 2003.
Warner Bros. has all the rights to all the Harry Potter books and has created films on all of those that have been published to date. With over a quarter of a billion books sold, the books have been translated into 61 languages and distributed in over 200 countries.
Joanne Rowling was born in Chipping Sodbury near Bristol, England. After she graduated from Exeter University, she worked as a secretary, and later as an English teacher in Portugal before moving to Edinburgh, Scotland, with her daughter. She currently lives in Scotland with her husband and three children.
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