Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 5 of 8 from 1860 edition - online book

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INTRODUCTION.                          Xvii
existence of a band of seven score of outlaws in the reign of Edward the Second, in or about Yorkshire. The stormy and troublous reigns of the Plantagenets make this a matter of no diffi­culty. Eunning his finger down the long list of rebellions and commotions, he finds that early in 1322 England was convulsed by the insurrection of Thomas Earl of Lancaster, the king's near relation, supported by many powerful noblemen. The Earl's chief seat was the castle of Pontefract, in the West Biding of Yorkshire. He is said to have been popular, and it would be a fair inference that many of his troops were raised in this part of England. King Edward easily got the better of the rebels and took exemplary vengeance upon them. Many of the leaders were at once put to death, and the lives of all their partisans were in danger. Is it impossible then, asks Mr. Hunter, that some who had been in the army of the Earl, secreted themselves in the woods and turned their skill in archery against the king's subjects or the king's deer ; " that these were the men who for so long a time haunted Barnsdale and Sherwood, and that Eobin Hood was one of them, a chief amongst them, being really of a rank originally somewhat superior to the rest ? "
"We have then three different hypotheses con­cerning Eobin Hood, one placing him in the reign of Eichard the First, another in that of Henry the