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Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott
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Ivanhoe (1819)

by Sir Walter Scott

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10,03292488 (3.75)1 / 442
Relates the adventures of the Saxon knight Ivanhoe in 1194, the year of Richard the Lion-Hearted's return from the Third Crusade.
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English (85)  Dutch (2)  Spanish (1)  Swedish (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Italian (1)  French (1)  All languages (92)
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Leather-bound edition badly worn and repaired by me. Wonderful classic story of romance and adventure. ( )
  Gmomaj | Dec 9, 2019 |
In some ways this is a hard read 'Children's Literature': In my childhood the required standard of English was such that this book's text was the reading level for junior school, I suspect now the content would challenge many at Secondary education: Nevertheless, a really great Historical 'Romance' story set in 12th Century England by one of Britain's foremost 19th century storytellers. Scott conjures up a gallant knight, Ivanhoe battling for his honour and the virtue of lovely Jewess, Rowena & Isaac, her father all occurring within the national struggle for power between assumed 'good' King Richard I & assumed 'baddie' brother, Prince John.
A must read in any serious collection of the evolution of English Literature.
There is within the text a substantial 'racist' & 'bigoted' element that fits well with the era in which it is set and offers an opportunity for the adults in the house to raise those topics with any off-spring. ( )
  tommi180744 | Sep 11, 2019 |
The tenth book in Scott's series of historical novels. Anthony Trollope rates Ivanhoe as one of the greatest ever novels, up there with Pride and Prejudice and others. I'm afraid I don't agree. It is an enjoyable read, but the plot is a frequently implausible, the characters are more caricatures than believable people, and the historical "background" tends to become didactic at times. But, as a rollicking good yarn in the Biggles or Indiana Jones style, the reader should settle down and enjoy. ( )
  mbmackay | Aug 8, 2019 |
Sir Walter Scott’s 1819 novel, Ivanhoe, tells the story of Wilfred of Ivanhoe, a Saxon knight in the twelfth century. Ivanhoe was disinherited by his father, Cedric of Rotherwood, for supporting the Norman King Richard Cœur-de-Lion and falling in love with Rowena, Cedric’s ward. Cedric had hoped to wed Rowena to Athelstane, the descendant of the great Saxon kings, in order to restore the Saxon nobility.

King John holds a tournament at Ashby-de-la-Zouch Castle, at which a disguised Ivanhoe bests the Norman champion and Templar knight, Brian de Bois-Guilbert, and where Robin of Locksley splits a willow reed with his arrow as well as his competitor’s arrow, a scene that first entered the Robin Hood legend in this novel. A Black Knight also performs admirably, but departs when besieged during the melee. A major subplot focuses on the place of Isaac of York and his daughter, Rebecca, as Jews in Norman-conquered England. Scott describes how Isaac’s wealth allows him to interact with Norman society, though, as a non-Christian, the Normans hold him in the same contempt with which they view the conquered Saxons. Rebecca’s intelligence and beauty, however, attract would-be Norman suitors.

After the tournament, Bois-Guilbert and Reginald Front-de-Bœuf, a fellow Norman Templar, capture Cedric and his party along with Isaac and Rebecca. In his fortress Torquilstone, Front-de-Bœuf demands an impossible ransom from Isaac in exchange for his daughter. Meanwhile, the Black Knight meets the Holy Clerk of Copmanhurst, Friar Tuck, and joins in the siege of Torquilstone with Locksley’s men. Front-de-Bœuf dies during the siege along with Athelstane, though Bois-Guilbert escapes with Rebecca as a prisoner. The Black Knight rescues Ivanhoe from the burning castle and reveals himself to be King Richard.

While Locksley hosts Richard Cœur-de-Lion, Bois-Guilbert’s Templar master, the zealot Lucas de Beaumanoir, believes that Rebecca has ensorcelled his knight and plans to execute her as a witch. She demands trial by combat and a call is sent for a champion. At Coningsburgh, while Cedric plans Athelstane’s funeral, the Saxon lord is discovered to have survived his wounds. Though Cedric still hopes to wed Athelstane to Rowena, Athelstane demurs and frees her to marry Ivanhoe. Rebecca’s message arrives, and Ivanhoe, Richard, and Cedric depart for the Templar Preceptory. There, Ivanhoe fights Bois-Guilbert, who dies of natural causes in the saddle. Rebecca, now free, makes plans for she and her father to leave England for Al-Andalus (Muslim Spain), where she believes they will be free from persecution. Before departing, Rebecca visits Rowena and gives her a gift on her wedding day to Ivanhoe.

Scott wrote a fictionalized history, though he sought to give it verisimilitude with references to historical sources, including those he invented such as the Norman Wardour Manuscript, which first appeared in Scott’s 1816 novel, The Antiquary. Though Robin Hood is not the main character of Ivanhoe, Scott’s portrayal of the outlaw left a lasting mark on the character’s history. Future retellings of Robin Hood included the arrow-splitting and transposed elements of Ivanhoe’s narrative on to Robin. According to Hector Hugh Munro, Scott misspelled “Cerdic,” creating the name Cedric in the English language. Further, Scott helped popularize Robin Hood as Robin of Locksley. In addition to this, while Scott’s portrayal of Jewish characters was likely progressive and sympathetic for 1820 (much like Shakespeare’s portrayal of Shylock in The Merchant of Venice was for its time), his focus on Isaac’s avaricious nature resembles the worst stereotyping of the twentieth century and has not aged particularly well. Rebecca fares better, but only in comparison to Isaac. That said, the work is a must-read for those studying English literature or who enjoy historical fiction or fantasy. This Heritage Press edition contains illustrations from Edward A. Wilson, who brilliantly captures the spirit of Scott’s text. ( )
2 vote DarthDeverell | Jul 15, 2019 |
I was surprised to find Robin Hood in this story!! I must admit I didn't know he as a part of this THe language made reading the book a bit challenging. I kept my dictionary close by and found the read enjoyable. Lots of knights in shining armour along with damsels in distress. Good fun. ( )
3 vote melanieklo | Jul 25, 2018 |
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» Add other authors (103 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Scott, Sir WalterAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Davidson, FrederickNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dettore, UgoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hill, JamesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hitchcock, Alfred M.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moffett, H. Y.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Page, MichaelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Richards, G. M.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Springer, NancyForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tulloch, GrahamIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilson, Edward A.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wood, Gillen D'ArcyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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In that pleasant district of merry England which is watered by the river Don, there extended in ancient times a large forest, covering the greater part of the beautiful hills and valleys which lie between Sheffield and the pleasant town of Doncaster. The remains of this extensive wood are still to be seen at the noble seats of Wentworth, of Warncliffe Park, and around Rotherham. Here haunted of yore the fabulous Dragon of Wantley; here were fought many of the most desperate battles during the Civil Wars of the Roses; and here also flourished in ancient times those bands of gallant outlaws, whose deeds have been rendered so popular in English song.
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This is the main work for Ivanhoe, by Sir Walter Scott. Please do not combine with any adaptation, abridgment, etc.
ISBN 0821204718 - edited, abridged, and annotated by Robin S. Wright.
Academy Classics for junior high schools series - abridged and edited by J.C. Tressler
ISBN 028970250X, DUTCH: 90-02-13331-6 - Edited, abridged and annotated by Robin S. Wright; illustrated by Christopher Bradbury
ISBNs 1587172488, 1587172496 - Adapted by Marianna Mayer

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0140436588, 0451531361

Columbia University Press

An edition of this book was published by Columbia University Press.

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Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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