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Anonymous - Robin Hood and the Sheriff

By Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2013-08-08. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2017-05-08.

The dialogue, without speech attributions, of the anonymous playlet known as Robin Hood and the Sheriff or Robin Hood and the Knight was jotted down on the verso of household accounts that seem to have belonged to the Paston family. Since we know that W. Wood, John Paston III's groom, performed in such a play, there is a very real possibility this is the text he would have used.

Scholarly editions

Studies and criticism

Allusions

1473 - Paston, John - To John Paston

          Wyrsshypffull and ryght hertyly belowyd broþer, I recomande me on-to yow, letyng yow wete þat on Wednysdaye last past I wrote yow a letter wheroff John Garbalde had þe beryng, promyttyng me þat ye shold haue it at Norwyche þys daye or ellys to-morowe in þe mornyng; wherin I praye yow to take a labore acordyng afftre þe tenure off þe same, and þat I maye haue an answere at London to Hoxon iff any massenger come, as eu[er]e I maye doo fore yow. As for tydyngys, þere was a truse taken at Brussellys abut þe xxvj daye off Marche last past be-twyn þe Duke off Borgoyn and' þe Frense Kyngys jmbassatorys and Master Wiliam Atclyff for þe Kyng heere, whyche is a pese be londe and water tyll þe fyrst daye off Apryll nowe next comyng, betwyen Fraunce and Ingelond and also þe Dukys londes. God holde it for euere and grace be.
          Item, þe Erle off Oxenfford was on Saterdaye at Depe, and is purposyd in-to Skotlond wyth a xij schyppys. I mystrust þat werke.
          Item, þere be in London many flyeng talys seyng þat þer shold be a werke, and yit þey wot not howe.

          Item, my lorde chamberleyn sendyþ now at þys tyme to Caleys þe yonge Lorde Sowche and Syr þomas Hongreffordys dowtre and heyre, [Davis, p. 461:] and som seye þe yonge Lady Haryngton. þes be iij grett jowellys. Caleys is a mery town; þey shall dwell þere, I wot not whyghe.
          No more, but I haue ben and ame troblyd wyth myn ouere large and curteys delyng wyth my seruantys and now wyth þer onkyndnesse. Plattyng, yowre man, wolde þys daye byd me fare-well to to-morow at Douer, not wythstondyng þryston, yowre oþer man, is from me and John Myryell and W. Woode, whyche promysed yow and Dawbeney, God haue hys sowle, at Castre þat iff ye wolde take hym in to be ageyn wyth me þat þan he wold neuer goo fro me; and þer-vppon I haue kepyd hym þys iij yere to pleye Seynt Jorge and Robynhod and þe shryff off Notyngham, and now when I wolde haue good horse he is goon in-to Bernysdale, and I wyth-owt a kepere.

Wretyn at Canterburye, to Caleys warde on Tewesday and happe be, vppon Good Frydaye þe xvj daye off Apryll Ao E. iiijti xiijo.
Yowre J. P., K.
Item, þe most parte off þe sowdyorys þat went ouer wyth Syr Robert Green haue leeff and be comyn hom, þe hyghe-weye full. My cariage was be-hynd me ij howres lengere þan I lokyd afftre, but j-wysse I wende þat I myght haue etyn my parte on Good Frydaye, all my gownes and pryde had ben goon; but all was saffe.[1]

Also see

Notes

  1. Davis, Norman, ed. Paston Letters and Papers of the Fifteenth Century (Oxford, 1971-76), vol. I, pp. 460-61.