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Sleepy Hollow and Washington Irving

            Washington Irving was born in New York City on 1783 and went to become the first story teller of America, and was best known for his two famous stories, Rip Van Winkle and the Legend of Sleepy Hollow. This last one is the story of a professor making his way in a town, Sleepy Hollow, in the outside of New York. He falls in love, makes an enemy and disappears, but that is not the complete story. Washington goes much deeper using American politics, folklore and cultural surrounding from the time to influence his acclaim short story "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.".
             The time period and cultural influences from the late-eighteenth and early-nineteenth century influences the story theme and symbolism (Thompson 4). One example of this would be the supernatural apparitions in the story. The major apparition would be the story of the Headless Horseman, but it would be a mistake to see this story solely as a Ghost story. Indeed, most readers probably find the tale more humorous than horrifying. Irving maintains a suspicion of the imagination and an ironic distance from the ghostly. Second, while "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" owes something to European models, it also draws from domestic sources. Although it is now difficult to trace direct localized sources for "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," scholars have located analogs in regional folklore for material in Irving's tales as well as real-life models, from the eighteenth-century, for Ichabod Crane and Brom Bones.
             Apart from the cultural influences, the regional contrast of the main character and Sleepy Hollow causes the major difference in the story. This is seen in the main character Ichabod Crane, who can be related to the Yankee and his enemy Brom Bones, who personifies the Dutch from New York (Ringe 1). His would seemingly make it prone to family prejudices, a younger parallel to the European aged communities, yet there is no evidence of this kind of hierarchy.

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