Robin Hood stole from the rich and gave to the poor
Henrik Thiil Nielsen 2013-07-24. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2017-05-08.
The notion that "Robin Hood stole from the rich and gave to the poor" is often expressed thus succinctly. It almost has the status of a proverb.
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- Dobson, R.B., ed.; Taylor, J., ed. Rymes of Robyn Hood: an Introduction to the English Outlaw (London, 1976), pp. 290-91.
England still hath bin a fruitfull Land
Of valiant Thieves, that durst bid true men stand.
One Bellin Dun, a famous Thiefe surviv'd,
From whom the towne of Dunstable's deriv'd;
And Robin Hood with little John agreed
To rob rich men, and the poore to feede.
Once the fift Henry could rob ex'lent well,
When he was Prince of Wales, as stories tell.
Then Fryer Tucke, a tall stout Thiefe indeed,
Could better rob and steale, then preach or read.
- Spraggs, Gillian. Outlaws & Highwaymen: The Cult of the Robber in England from the Middle Ages to the Nineteenth Century (London, 2001), p. 12.