Study Guide

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow The Supernatural

By Washington Irving

The Supernatural

Boo! Gotcha! Okay sure, the supernatural can be scary, but isn't there more to it? Are there different types? Can it be funny? Is it real or is it total fluff? And most importantly, was it Brom or the Headless Horseman? We know that's a lot of questions, but "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" seems like an investigative report about all things supernatural. We end up with more questions than answers, but one thing's for sure in our sleepy little town: whatever it is, the supernatural is going to come for you. So put up your dukes.

Questions About The Supernatural

  1. Is there a difference between the stories the wives tell and the stories Ichabod tells? If so, spill the beans: what's so different?
  2. How do science, reason, and the supernatural interact in "Sleepy Hollow"? Which concept normally takes the cake? Are there any exceptions?
  3. Writer and scientist Arthur Clarke once said, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." Is this true in "Sleepy Hollow"? How about when Ichabod talks about astronomy like it's magic? 

Chew on This

It doesn't matter if the supernatural is real in "Sleepy Hollow"; it still has power over people, and that's all that counts.

This isn't a story about the supernatural. After all, the whole thing is totally made up.