Robin Hood

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Chapter 10 Marian Goes to Sherwood Forest

Very early next morning, Marian put on boy's clothes and a boy's hat and woke up Friar Tuck. The friar took his staff and Marian took her bow and arrows. Then they left the house and walked on the Great North Road through the forest.
After some hours, the friar suddenly left the road and sat down under a tree.
‘Please let's stop, My Lady,’ he said. ‘We had no breakfast and I am very hungry!’
Marian laughed.
‘I am sorry, Friar Tuck,’ she said, ‘You are right, we will eat now. Stay here. I will take your staff and my bow and arrow, and catch some animals. "We can cook them here in the forest.’
Marian left the friar and moved quietly between the forest trees. She saw a deer. Very quietly, she took out an arrow and put it to her bow.
‘Stop there, boy!’ said a man behind her. The man spoke very loudly. The deer jumped at the noise and ran away into the trees. Marian was very angry. She turned to the speaker but he wore a big hood. She couldn't see his face.
‘Well, boy,’ said the man. ‘Don't you know that you cannot eat the king's deer? The Sheriff of Nottingham killed two men last week because they caught a deer.’

‘I am not afraid of the sheriff,’ said Marian, ‘or of you. Leave now
- or fight!’
‘Fight with you?’ the man laughed. ‘But you are only a boy! Well, you have a staff and I have one too. I will fight with you -with one hand!’
Marian fought well. She was strong and quick. With only one hand, the man could not win. She hit him again and again on his head and across his back.
‘Stop, stop!’ he laughed. ‘You are young, but you are a good fighter.’ He threw back his hood. ‘I am Robin Hood. Will you come with me, and be one of my men?’
‘Robin!’ said Marian, and threw back her hood too. Her lovely red hair fell down her back.
‘Marian!’ answered Robin. ‘What are you doing here, in the forest
? Is nobody with you ?’
‘I am with a friend, Friar Tuck,’ said Marian, ‘and he is very hungry! The deer was for him. But I think that he will be happy to eat at Robin Hood's table.’
She and Robin went back to the road and looked for Friar Tuck.
They called his name but there was no answer.
‘Poor man!’ said Marian. ‘Perhaps he is looking for me. Perhaps he thinks that the sheriff's men caught me!’
Then she told Robin about her father and the sheriff.
‘I cannot go home now, Robin,’ she said. ‘I want to be with you here, in Sherwood Forest. Friar Tuck will marry us. Let's find him. Perhaps he will want to live with us.’
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Chapter 11 Robin Hood and Friar Tuck

They did not find Friar Tuck that day, so Marian stayed with her uncle. She came each day to the forest.
‘Another friar lives at my uncle's home,’ she told Robin, ‘but he is a weak man. He doesn't want to marry us because he is
'Robin!' said Marian, and threw back her hood.

afraid. And the sheriff will find me at my uncle's house. Oh, where is Friar Tuck? Only he can help us.’

Then one day, about a month after the fight between Marian and Robin, Will Scarlet told them an interesting story.
‘People in the village of River Dale are talking about a fat friar,’ he said. ‘They say he came to the village last month. Now he lives near the river. For one penny, he will take people across the river in his boat. When poor people cannot pay, he carries them across on his back! People say he loves good food and a good fight. He is a very strange friar, I think.’
‘And I think that man is Friar Tuck,’ laughed Marian. ‘Robin, please go to River Dale and bring him back with you.’
Robin and Will Scarlet walked with Marian to her uncle's house and then went back through the forest to the village of River Dale.
‘Wait here, Will,’ said Robin. ‘Marian says the friar is a strong man and very brave. I'd like to try him!’
Robin then walked to the river and looked across it. He saw the friar's little house, and his boat.
‘Good friar,’ he called, ‘where are you ? Will you take me in your boat? I have some money and I can pay you well.’
Friar Tuck came out of the house and got into the boat. He came quickly across the river.
‘Show me your money first,’ said the friar. ‘Then you can get in.’
He jumped from the boat to dry ground and held out his hand. Robin gave him a penny and walked to the boat. But he didn't get in. He pushed the boat and it moved slowly away, down the river.
‘You stupid man! What are you doing?’ shouted Friar Tuck. Robin took out his sword.

‘Now we have no boat, friar,’ he said. ‘Carry me across the river on your back and perhaps I will not kill you!’
The friar said nothing. He looked at Robin's sword and then walked into the water. Robin climbed onto his back and they went slowly to the middle of the river. Then the friar suddenly stopped, stood up, and threw Robin into the water.
Friar Tuck could swim more quickly than Robin. He got out of the river and called,
‘Come here, friend, and fight with me. I do not have a sword because I am a churchman. And I can kill a man with my two hands!’
Then Will Scarlet came out of the forest with ten of Robin's men. ‘Robin, are you hurt ?’ he called. Robin climbed out of the river. ‘What are you going to do now, friar?’ said Robin. ‘Will you
fight us ?’
Friar Tuck did not answer him. He called loudly, ‘Hunter! Biter!
Here, my boys!’
Two great dogs came out of the forest.
‘My two dogs and I are ready to fight you!’ said Friar Tuck. ‘But tell me first, are you Robin Hood?’
‘I am,’ said Robin. ‘Lady Marian sent me. She is right - you are a good fighter! Will you come and live in the forest? Will you be our friar?’
The next day, Friar Tuck married Robin and Marian in the little church of River Dale. Then he left his house by the river. Now he was one of Robin's men.
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Chapter 12
The Two Churchmen and the Bags of Gold

Another winter came and went. There was not much snow on the ground and people could again use the Great North Road.
‘One day, Sir Richard of Lee will pay us the abbot's money,’ said Robin to Little John and Will Scarlet. ‘But perhaps we can get the money back from the church first.’
‘A good plan, Robin,’ answered Little John. ‘I will find a rich churchman and invite him to a forest dinner. Then he can pay us five hundred pounds. That is not too expensive for our best forest deer, our whitest bread and our finest wine!’

The next evening, Little John went to the road and waited at the robbers' usual place behind a tree. He didn't have to wait long. Two churchmen on beautiful white horses were on the road. The two men wore expensive clothes. They were afraid, and they often looked into the forest.
Little John came out of the forest and moved to the middle of the road.
‘Good evening, brothers,’ he called. ‘Are you going to St Mary's Abbey?’
They stopped their horses and the younger churchman answered,
‘Yes, we are going to visit the abbot. Are we near the abbey? We don't want to be on this road at night. People say robbers live in the forests near here!’
‘I am the abbot's man,’ said Little John. ‘I can show you a quick way to the abbey. Follow me!’
So the two men followed Little John into the forest. After a few
minutes they saw smoke and then a fire. Robin's men were there. ‘Where are we?’ cried the churchmen. ‘Who are these men? This is not the abbey!’

‘Good evening, brothers!’ said Robin. ‘Don't be afraid, we will not hurt you. We hope you will stay for dinner!’
The two churchmen were very unhappy but they could not leave. So they got down from their horses and sat at Robin's table. Robin's men brought them meat, wine and bread. The food was very good, but the churchmen couldn't eat. They were too afraid.
‘Not hungry ?’ asked Robin. ‘Please eat more because we will ask you to pay something for your dinner. With a little church gold, we can help the abbot's villagers. On the abbot's land there are many poor families.’
The men's faces were very white. ‘We are only poor churchmen,’ they answered, ‘and we have no money. Please don't kill us!’
Little John went to the churchmen's horses and looked in their bags.
Then he called to Robin Hood.
‘They are right, Robin. There is no money in their bags.’
‘We told you that,’ said one of the men. ‘Please — it is very late and we want to get to the abbey. My Lord Abbot is waiting for us.’
‘Wait!’ answered Robin. ‘You are wearing some fine clothes. You can pay for your dinner with those. Take them off!’
‘What ? Here, in the forest?’ asked the men. ‘The night is very cold!’ ‘Take them off,’ Robin repeated, ‘or do you want me to help you?’
He took out his sword. The two men slowly took off all their clothes.
The robbers looked at the churchmen and began to laugh... Under their clothes, each man had five large money bags.
‘Look at that,’ said Little John. ‘What do we have here? Aha! There is gold in these bags! One hundred pounds in each bag.’
‘We will take this gold,’ said Robin Hood. ‘It is not yours because you didn't have any money. Perhaps somebody put the gold there! Go now and tell the good abbot. Robin Hood found one thousand pounds!’

The two men began to put on their clothes again.
‘No, no,’ said Robin. ‘You can give us your clothes too - and your horses. You can wear our old clothes, and walk to the abbey.’
The two men ran away and Robin Hood's men laughed for a long time.
‘I would like to see the abbot's face tomorrow!’ said Little John. ‘This is more money than we gave him. He will not be a happy man.’
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Chapter 13
Sir Richard of Lee Comes Back to the Forest

The next day, Sir Richard arrived.
‘Robin, my good friend,’ he said, ‘I have your money, and I am also bringing one hundred arrows for you and your men. My wife and her friends made them.’
‘You are a good man,’ Robin answered. ‘We are very happy about the arrows, but I will not take your gold. The abbot took that money last year - and yesterday the church gave it back to me!’
He told Sir Richard about the two churchmen and the bags of gold under their clothes.
‘Now,’ said Robin, ‘I would like to give you and your lady something. I would like to give your wife this beautiful white horse. And for you, I have some fine clothes!’
The two churchmen arrived at the abbey later the next day and also told their story. The abbot was very angry.
‘Robin Hood is laughing now,’ he said, ‘but one day, the sheriff or I will kill him for this.’
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Chapter 14 Robin Hood and the Gold Arrow

Every day, the sheriff's men brought new stories about Robin Hood. Prince John heard the stories too.
‘This man Robin Hood only has fifty men,’ he said to the sheriff. ‘You have five hundred men but you cannot catch him. People are laughing at you! What are you going to do?’
‘I have another plan, My Lord,’ said the sheriff. ‘I will have a contest with bows and arrows. The winner will get a gold arrow. I know that Robin Hood will come. Everybody says that he is the best bowman in England. He will win the contest and take the gold arrow. Then I will take him.’

Robin and his men heard about the contest. The sheriff was right — they wanted to go.
‘You will have to stay at home, Robin,’ laughed Little John. ‘We want to win, and we are better than the sheriff's men. But you are a better bowman than all of us!’
‘Be careful, Robin,’ said Marian. ‘The sheriff is a dangerous man. He knows that you will go. He only wants to find you and kill you!’
‘I know that,’ said Robin. ‘This is a fine adventure. I will win the contest, but the sheriff won't catch me ...’
‘Then I will come too,’ said Marian. ‘I will wear boy's clothes again, and my boy's hat. The sheriff will not know me, and I will play in the contest. Perhaps I will win the gold arrow, not you!’

On the day of the contest, many people came. Some people played and other people watched. One hundred of the sheriff's men were there too.
‘The winner of this contest will be Robin Hood,’ the sheriff told his men. ‘He will come to take the gold arrow from me —

then you can take him. But do not kill him. Prince John wants to meet him first!’
The contest began. One man was the best.
‘That man is Robin Hood,’ thought the Sheriff. ‘People say he is clever. But we will catch him easily. That big man with him is Little John and the fat man is Friar Tuck. We will take them too. But who is the boy? He is very good with a bow and arrow too.’
The contest finished and Robin Hood was the winner. He went to the sheriff and smiled.
‘The arrow is mine, I think,’ he said. The sheriff smiled coldly and gave him the gold arrow. Then Robin turned away.
‘Take him now!’ shouted the sheriff to his men.
But twenty of Robin's men took off their hoods and moved behind Robin. A great swordfight began. Robin's men and the sheriff's fought for a long time. Marian fought too this time, and she fought well. Many of the sheriff's men died that day. The sheriff was very angry.
‘Where are Prince John's men?’ he shouted. ‘They are late, and Robin Hood is winning!’
Then Prince John arrived with fifty men on horses.
‘They are too many,’ called Robin to his men, ‘and they are on horses. Get back to the forest! Marian, come!’
Then Will Scarlet called out, 'Robin, Marian! They hurt Little John!' ‘Don't wait for me,’ said Little John. ‘It is my leg. I cannot walk. Go!
‘Never!’ said Robin.
With Will and Marian's help, he put Little John on his back and ran to the forest road. Suddenly a man arrived on a white horse. It was Richard of Lee.
‘Quick, Robin, put Little John on the horse and follow me. The sheriff and his men will not look for you in my home!’ So

'That man is Robin Hood,' thought the Sheriff

Sir Richard helped his friends Robin, Marian, Little John and Will Scarlet. They stayed at Sir Richard's house that night. Robin told Sir Richard and his wife about the contest and about other adventures in the forest.
‘You have many adventures, My Lady,’ said Sir Richard's wife to Marian, ‘but you live dangerously. You cannot go home or visit your father. How will these adventures end? When will you leave the forest ?’
‘One day, King Richard will come home,’ answered Marian. ‘Then life will be better for poor people and Robin and I will go home.’

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Chapter 15 The Tall Friar

People loved King Richard because he was a brave man and a good king. But his brother, Prince John, only wanted to be king and to be rich. People hated him.
When King Richard was in England, the prince and other important Norman lords had to listen to their king. They could not take land and money from weaker men. But Richard fought in Jerusalem for many years. When the king was away, Prince John and his friends were greedy and unkind.
Then, one day, the prince got a letter from the Sheriff of Nottingham. ‘My Lord Prince,’ wrote the sheriff, ‘the people are saying that your brother Richard is here in the North. They say he is going from town to town and asking questions about me - and about you. We will have to be
very careful…’
‘So,’ thought the prince, ‘Richard is in England again. Why isn't he dead? And why didn't he come here to London? What stories about me is he listening to? I think I too will go to Nottingham and visit my friend the sheriff. Perhaps he can tell me more.’

So the prince took the Great North Road to the sheriff's house. A hundred strong men went with him. They took the road through Sherwood Forest, and there they met a churchman. The man was very tall and strong and he wore a great hood over his face.
‘Well, friar,’ said the prince, ‘you are a brave man. Is nobody with you? Aren't you afraid? Don't you know that the robber, Robin Hood, lives in Sherwood Forest?’
‘People say that Robin Hood does not hurt poor men,’ said the friar. ‘People say stupid things,’ answered the prince angrily. ‘They say that my brother Richard is in England. But I say that he is dead! I will
be king then. Now move out of my way!’
The tall man moved out of the way of the horses. He looked back at Prince John and his men for some minutes. Then he left the road and walked quickly into the forest. The tall man walked for a long time. Evening came. Then he heard something up in the trees:
‘Good evening, brother. Why are you walking in the forest? Is nobody with you? Are you not afraid?’
The tall man laughed.
‘Another person asked me that question. I am not afraid. I am looking for Robin Hood.’
Will Scarlet jumped down lightly from the tree. ‘Then I will take you to him,’ he said.
When they arrived in the middle of the forest, Robin's men were there. There was good food on the tables again.
‘Robin!’ called Will. ‘This good friar wants to meet you.’
‘We want to meet him too,’ said Robin. ‘We will eat with rich men, but we ask them to pay for their dinner. Poor people pay us with their stories. What is your story, friend? Why do you want to meet me ?’
‘This is my story,’ said the friar. ‘I left England with King Richard.
Now the king is in England again, and I came too.

'What is your story, friend? Why do you want to meet me?'

People everywhere tell me stories about Robin Hood, so I wanted to meet you.’
‘Oh, Robin,’ said Marian, ‘this is wonderful. The king is here in
England! Let's go and find him. We can tell him everything about the sheriff and Prince John…’
‘I love no man in the world more than the king,’ said Robin. ‘But what will he think? His brother is a greedy man. I can tell him that. But Prince John will say I am a robber. I think, for now, that I will stay quiet.’
The tall churchman stood up.
‘You are wrong, Robin,’ he said. Then he called loudly, ‘To me! To me!’
Suddenly fifty strong men came out of the dark night and stood behind him.
‘What is this?’ said Robin. ‘Are you Prince John's man? Are the prince and his men here ? Are they really so brave ?’
‘Perhaps my brother is not a brave man. But I am Richard, your king, and I wanted to meet the famous Robin Hood. I hear many good stories about you, Robin. And other people also tell me bad stories about my brother. I know that John gave your lands to the sheriff. But from today, you will be Robin of Locksley again, and the king's friend.’
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Chapter 16 The Last Adventure

After his visit to Sherwood Forest, King Richard went back to London. Robin and his men left the forest. Will Scarlet went to London with the king, but Little John stayed with Robin and Marian at Locksley House.

One day, two years later, Robin visited his old friend, Friar Tuck. They talked for a long time about their adventures.
‘I eat too well now, Robin,’ said the friar. ‘I am too fat and I cannot fight. People say that King Richard is ill. I hope that he will live for a long time. I hope that John will never be king. I wouldn't like to sleep on a hard bed in the forest again!’
On the way home, Robin walked slowly and thought about Friar Tuck's words. Then he heard the noise of horses' feet on the road, and looked up. It was the sheriff and his men.
‘Robin Fitzooth,’ called the sheriff, ‘I have here a letter from the king. It says that you will come with me!’
‘From King Richard?’ asked Robin. ‘Why does the king send you?
He knows that we are not friends!’
The sheriff came nearer, but not too near. He was very afraid of Robin.
‘Not King Richard,’ he answered. ‘Richard is dead! I am talking about King John. Take him, men!’
Robin pulled out his sword and began to fight. At the same time he moved slowly away from the road to the forest. There were too many men - he couldn't win. He had cuts on his right arm, and the arm hurt very badly.
When he got to the forest, he ran. He could find his way through forest very well, and the sheriff's men lost him.
Robin went through the forest to St Mary's Abbey. In front of the abbey, he fell to the ground. There, the abbot's men found him.
‘It is Robin Hood!’ said the abbot. ‘I would like to kill him, but this is a church. Take him to one of the bedrooms. You, man, go to the sheriff. Tell him that Robin Hood is at the abbey.’

Robin woke up. There was nobody in the room. He was very weak and couldn't move from the bed. Then he heard a friend. ‘I am coming, Robin!’ called Little John. ‘Where are you ?’

‘Here! I am here!’ said Robin weakly. Little John broke open the door.
Robin spoke very slowly.
‘Little John, help me one last time. Carry me to the window. Good.
Now give me your bow.’
Little John helped Robin to put an arrow in the bow. They pulled. The arrow flew a long way, into the forest.
‘Take me to that place and put me in the ground there,’ said Robin.
There is a place in the forest near the abbey. There you can find these words:

Under this stone is Robin Hood. Remember Robin and his men — No braver man will come again.
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Chapters 1-5
Before you read
1 Robin Hood took money from rich people and gave it to people without money. How did he do it? Why did he do it? What do you think?
2 Find these words in your dictionary. They are all in the story. abbey abbot arrow bow deer forest king land prince sheriff sword
a Find words for
• people
• places
• an animal
b What did people use when they fought?
3 Answer the questions. Find the words in italics in your dictionary.
a Which would you like to be?
brave greedy poor
b When John robs David, who loses?
c Why do people like adventures?
d What can you do with gold?
After you read
4 Why is:
a Lord Gamwell first angry and sad, and then happy?
b Prince John angry?
c the abbot angry and afraid?
d young Much sad and angry?
5 In the fight between Robin and Little John, who is stronger? Who is cleverer?
6 How is the story of Robin's parents the same as
Shakespeare's story of Romeo and Juliet? How is it different? Talk about it.

Chapters 6-10
Before you read
7 How many of Robin Hood's men do you know? What do you know about them?
8 What are a hood and a staff in your language? Which do you
carry in your hand? Which do you put on your head?

After you read
9 Finish these sentences. Put in the right number of pounds.
One year, the Abbot of St Mary's gave Richard of Lee £…. . The next year, Sir Richard had to pay the abbot £ But he only had
£ .... , so Robin Hood gave him £ ....... .
10 Talk about Marian and her father. Who is braver? Why?
11 What do you think about Friar Tuck? Is he a good churchman? Why (not)?

Chapters 11-16
Before you read
12 What do you remember about Richard of Lee's story? Why will he come back to Sherwood Forest?
13 Will Robin and Marian marry? Will they live happily in the forest? What possible problems are there for them? What do you think?
14 What happens in a contest? Look in your dictionary.
After you read
15 Answer these questions.
a Why does Friar Tuck throw Robin in the river?
b What three things does Robin take from the churchmen? Who does he give them to?
c Who is the tall friar? Why is he on the Great North Road?
d How does the sheriff catch Robin Hood?
16 At the end of the story, have you got any questions? What would you like to know?

17 Work with other students. Make pictures of the people in the Robin Hood adventures, and write about them. Put your work up on your classroom wall.
18 Choose one adventure in this book, and tell the story.
19 It is a year after the end of the story. What is Marian doing now? Write a letter from her to a friend.
20 Write about an adventurer from your country. When did they live? What did they do? Who were they with? Who tried to stop them?
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