Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 5 of 8 from 1860 edition - online book

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Daynil the Isle of Ely. Robert Hood was now living in outlawry among the woodland copses and thickets." x
Mair, a Scottish writer of the first quarter of the 16th century, the next historian who takes cognizance of our hero, and the only other that requires any attention, has a passage which may be considered in connection with the foregoing. In his Historia Majoris Brittanice, he remarks, under the reign of Richard the First: " About this time [1189-99], as I conjecture, the notorious robbers Robert Hood of England and Little John lurked in the woods, spoiling the goods only of rich men. They slew nobody but those who at­tacked them, or offered resistance in defence of their property. Robert maintained by his plun­der a hundred archers, so skilful in fight that four hundred brave men feared to attack them. He suffered no woman to be maltreated, and never robbed the poor, but assisted them abun­dantly with the wealth which he took from abbots."
It appears then that contemporaneous history is absolutely silent concerning Robin Hood ; that, excepting the casual allusion in Piers Ploughman, he is first mentioned by a rhyming chronicler, who wrote one hundred years after the latest date at which he can possibly be supposed to have lived, and then by two prose chroniclers, who wrote about 1 Scotichronicon, ed. Goodall, ii. 104.