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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

by Washington Irving

Man and the Natural World Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

Then, as he wended his way, by swamp and stream and awful woodland, to the farmhouse where he happened to be quartered, every sound of nature, at that witching hour, fluttered his excited imagination. (1.16)

Ichabod is a scaredy cat, but what exactly is he afraid of? Supernatural beasts or plain old natural phenomena?

Quote #2

From hence the low murmur of his pupils' voices, conning over their lessons, might be heard in a drowsy summer's day, like the hum of a beehive; interrupted now and then by the authoritative voice of the master, in the tone of menace or command; or, peradventure, by the appalling sound of the birch, as he urged some tardy loiterer along the flowery path of knowledge. (1.9)

We often see animals taking on human features in literature (if you want to get fancy, that's called anthropomorphism), but here the students become a garden filled with buzzing bees (zoomorphism at its best!).

Quote #3

A small brook glides through it, with just murmur enough to lull one to repose. (1.1)

We knew we recognized that river. Last time we saw it, it was called Lethe and was making people forget stuff in Ovid's Metamorphoses. So now the natural is the supernatural?

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