The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood
Howard Pyle relates the story of the English outlaw Robin Hood and his band of Merry Men, compiling the traditional material into a coherent narrative in a colorful, invented "old English" idiom that preserves the flavor of the ballads, and adapts it for children.
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A preface is an introduction to a book. In this preface, author Howard Pyle (pictured below) gives a hint of what is contained in the book. (This annotation contains an image)
Chapter 1 - How Robin Hood Came to Be an Outlaw
Did you know that you can look up any word in the text of the book or the text of the questions and answers? Just click (or press on mobile devices) the word you want to define and hold until the blue text selector pops up. When you release, a define option will appear. Since it's so easy to look up words, make sure you use this feature frequently. Try looking up the word "cudgel." It will be used many times throughout the novel.
There are several places in this novel where the author uses imagery to describe the surroundings. After watching the short video below, see if you notice other places in the text where Pyle uses imagery. (This annotation contains a video)
The men are mocking, or making fun of, Robin Hood because he is so young. Which of the following lines does not support this statement?
This novel was written in 1883. As with much writing from this time, there are words such as "anon" that we no longer use today. As you read, make sure you remember to use context clues or to look these words up in the dictionary. Once you become familiar with the writing, it becomes easier to understand.
The title of this chapter is "How Robin Hood Came to Be an Outlaw." Why is this an appropriate title for this chapter?
As you can tell by this paragraph, Robin Hood and his friends in the forest are heroes to the people because they help the poor and are protectors of women and children.
Notice that the text uses the word "thou" instead of "you," and that the order of phrases and sentences are different from how we speak. In modern English, this phrase would be something like, "Wait for me to come at you, if you dare, and meet me if you're not scared."
How does Robin Hood react to being beaten by this man?
A christening is either a ceremony of baptism, a public ceremony in which a new ship is formally named and launched, or an act or instance of naming or dedicating something new. Which of these are they preparing for in the text?
Why does the Sheriff of Nottingham want to capture Robin Hood?
Chapter 2 - Robin Hood and the Tinker
Notice the imagery in the paragraph. Does the author's description match the illustration below? (This annotation contains an image)
Which of the following is the best summary of the messenger's visit?
The short video below explains dramatic irony. After watching, please answer the question that follows. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following is the best example of dramatic irony?
Since Robin Hood and his men are such good customers at the Blue Boar, the owner takes good care of them. Will this help Robin Hood in some way?
Which of the following did not occur at the Blue Boar?
Why would Robin Hood stop in the middle of a fight to sound his horn?
In two or three sentences, summarize how the Tinker came to join Robin Hood's group. Be sure to use details from the story.
Chapter 3 - The Shooting Match at Nottingham Town
What happened when the Sheriff told the King about Robin Hood?
Robin Hood knows that the Sheriff is trying to set a trap for him, and that makes him want the prize even more.
Why is the Sheriff so sure that he will be able to spot Robin Hood?
The author gives a clue in the highlighted text about the identity of the man in scarlet. Who is he?
As readers, we now know that it was Robin Hood who won the contest, but the Sheriff does not. This is an example of which type of irony?
Chapter 4 - Will Stutely Rescued by His Companions
We learn something about Robin's Hood character in this paragraph. Notice how he feels about the time he killed a man. He is not proud of doing it, but he wants his men to defend themselves if needed.
How did the Sheriff's men recognize Will Stutely?
This man seems to be angry that Will Stutely will be hanged. What does this tell you about Robin Hood and his men? (This annotation contains an image)
Chainmail is a type of armor consisting of small metal rings linked together in a pattern to form a mesh. (This annotation contains an image)
In your own words, what is Will telling the Sheriff in this passage?
A simile is a comparison between two things using "like" or "as." Which of the following lines of text is an example of a simile?
Robin Hood against the Sheriff of Nottingham is one of the main conflicts of the novel so far. Do you think this conflict is over?
Chapter 5 - Robin Hood Turns Butcher
Robin is thinking about making things even with the Sheriff. Which of the following is the author using here?
Robin Hood finds this statement funny because he thinks most would not call him honest. What do you think of him so far?
Imagine the commotion that Robin Hood caused because of his method of selling. (This annotation contains an image)
As readers, we know that the Butcher is actually Robin Hood, but the Sheriff has no idea. Which of the following types of irony is this?
The butchers all feel sorry for the "poor spendthrift youth." What do you think Robin Hood has planned?
The Sheriff seems to think that maybe Robin Hood has forgotten about the times he tried to harm him. What is Robin Hood really doing?
What lesson was Robin Hood trying to teach the Sheriff?
Chapter 6 - Little John Goes to Nottingham Fair
Why does the Sheriff offer such a poor prize for the Fair?
Based on the highlighted text, which of the following is true about Little John?
Many stories in literature use a series of three. For example, "The Three Little Pigs," "Goldilocks and the Three Bears," and "The Three Billy Goats Gruff," all use threes. Many stories also use three wishes or three events to create, build up, and finally release tension in a story. Can you think of other examples of "threes"?
Does it surprise you that Little John is going to stay with the Sheriff? Why do you think he chose to stay there?
Chapter 7 - How Little John Lived at the Sheriff's
Little John is staying with the Sheriff and is acting as his "right hand man." This is an example of which of the following?
Which of the following is not a cause for the disagreement between Little John and the Steward?
Thinking about what you know about the men in Robin Hood's band, what do you think of Little John's plan to enjoy a meal with the Cook before they fight?
Alliteration is the repetition of the beginning consonant sound in two or more words. Poems and songs often use alliteration, but you may notice it in the rest of the text as well. (This annotation contains an image)
It seems that the skills of the two men are evenly matched. (This annotation contains an image)
Robin claims that they have already punished the Sheriff, and that he is unhappy that Little John has stolen his silver plate. What does this tell you about Robin Hood?
Below is a short video describing situational irony. Think about how Robin Hood returning the Sheriff's silver is an example of situational irony. (This annotation contains a video)
Chapter 8 - Little John and the Tanner of Blyth
After reviewing the short video below on personification, notice the highlighted text. Can you tell what is being personified? (This annotation contains a video)
Why does Little John say that he thinks that it will rain?
What does the author mean when he writes, "...even when he could not tickle their ribs with a clothyard shaft."
Which of the following idioms would best fit in the highlighted paragraph?
Which of the following lines contains a simile?
Robin Hood thinks it is funny that Little John has been beaten. He thinks it is proper punishment for failing to do what he was supposed to do. How do you think Little John will react to being made fun of like this?
How does Robin Hood react anytime he or his men are beaten by someone?
Chapter 9 - Robin Hood and Will Scarlet
Robin Hood seems to think that this man is no match for him because of how he is dressed and behaving. (This annotation contains an image)
What is Robin Hood demanding of this man?
Notice again, the author has used a series of three here.
Why does Robin Hood change the subject every time someone mentions the fight between him and Will?
Why does Robin Hood say that he realizes it was going to rain?
Chapter 10 - The Adventure with Midge the Miller's Son
Based on the title and on what has happened in the other chapters, what will likely happen in this chapter?
Which of the following is not true about the song the Tanner is singing?
The author makes an allusion to King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table here. (This annotation contains an image)
Notice the custom they are following. They ask Little John to sing several times and he declines several times then finally agrees.
In your own words, describe what Robin Hood plans to do to the man coming down the road.
This trick surely did not go as Robin Hood planned. Did this surprise you, or did you predict something like this would happen?
Below is a short video about symbolism. Think about the symbols in this book. Do you think there is a reason Robin and his men all wear Lincoln green? What does the color green symbolize? (This annotation contains a video)
Chapter 11 - Robin Hood and Allan a Dale
Why does Robin Hood decide they need someone to come to Sherwood Forest?
A minstrel is a singer or musician, especially one who sang or recited lyrical poetry to a music for the noble families (kings, queens, etc.). In the Disney version of this story, this character was a rooster. (This annotation contains an image)
Based on his actions, what can be inferred about Will Scarlet?
For many years, arranged marriages were normal. In an arranged marriage, someone besides the bride and groom, often a father, chose the two to be married. There are still cultures in the world today where arranged marriages take place.
Will Scarlet tells Robin Hood that he should "Be not too sure..." that he can force his way onto the Friar's "soft side." This is an example of _______________.
Which of the following lines contains alliteration?
Chapter 12 - Robin Hood Seeks the Curtal Friar
Using context clues, what does the word "ford" mean as is it used in this sentence?
Imagine what Robin Hood must be thinking when he realizes that this man is talking to himself.
Which of the following is true about the song that the Friar is singing?
This man is answering Robin Hood's questions rather strangely. Do you have any predictions or thoughts about this situation?
After reading the text and looking at the image below, answer the question that follows. (This annotation contains an image)
Based on this incident, which of the following best describes Robin Hood here?
Which of the following lines from The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood contains a simile?
Everyone seems to have a great deal of respect for Robin Hood. Nearly all of the people he has encountered have apologized for fighting with him once they realized who he was.
The whole time Robin Hood was talking to the Friar and he didn't realize it.
Chapter 13 - Robin Hood Compasses a Marriage
Why are Robin Hood and the others visiting the church?
Friar Tuck tells the other friar that he is lonely and wants to witness the wedding that is about to take place. Which of the following describes Friar Tuck here?
Robin is stating that the Bishop's pride may "have a fall" before he knows it. What is this statement an example of?
Why does the author compare Ellen to a "fair white lily snapped at the stem"?
Robin Hood is bold and is not scared to admit that he is the one behind this chaos. He is a good friend to many.
Authors tell us about characters through their words and actions. Think about how Ellen's father reacts here. Reread what he says about his own daughter. What does this tell you about this man?
Chapter 14 - Robin Hood Aids a Sorrowful Knight
After watching the short video below describing archetypes, think about Little John and Robin Hood. Robin Hood fits the archetype of the outlaw hero, and Little John is the loyal retainer. Can you think of any other archetypes in this story? (This annotation contains a video)
Robin Hood states that many people have many different opinions of him. Do you think Robin Hood is kind, cruel, an honest fellow, or a vile thief? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.
Think about where we have met this character before.
Which of the following is the best summary of Sir Richard's situation?
The Bishop was almost certainly expecting Robin Hood to scold Little John, not to make fun of the Bishop.
Which of the following is not a conflict in this chapter?
Why does Robin Hood allow the Bishop to keep some of his belongings?
What does the highlighted text foreshadow?
Chapter 15 - How Sir Richard of the Lea Paid His Debts
Judging by the manner in which Prior Vincent is dressed and by the company that is with him, he must be quite wealthy and important.
Based on the highlighted text, which of the following conclusions cannot be drawn about the doctor?
Sir Richard has given the Prior a chance to show him mercy, and he has asked the Sheriff for his help. Neither man has treated the Prior kindly.
In your own words, explain why the Prior and the Sheriff are such a "sorry lot" (why are they so upset)? Use evidence from the text to support your thoughts.
Which of the following lines from the text does not contain a simile?
Why is this crowd so angry with this young man?
What lesson did Sir Richard hope the people learned from this incident?
Men of this time were greatly concerned with honor. Since Sir Richard vowed to pay his debt to Robin Hood, he felt he must do so in order to make things right. Robin Hood knows this, and that is why he took the money, even though he felt it wasn't necessary since Sir Richard had saved David's life.
Chapter 16 - Little John Turns Barefoot Friar
How do Robin Hood and Little John feel about their lives?
Dressed as a friar, Little John meets three maidens on his journey. (This annotation contains an image)
Which of the following is a reason why Little John did not want to follow the ladies any longer?
Does Little John behave like a "holy" man?
Do the two men behave like "holy" men? Please use examples from the text to support your answer.
What is the conflict of the two friars?
Do you believe that these men have no money? Do you think Little John believes that they have no money?
In what ways are Little John and Robin Hood similar? Give at least two examples.
Chapter 17 - Robin Hood Turns Beggar
Notice that the last chapter was telling of Little John's adventure as a Friar. This chapter tells about the same day as the last chapter did, but it tells Robin Hood's adventure instead.
Why is Robin Hood talking with the Beggar?
It seems odd that Robin Hood wants to change places with the Beggar. Why might he want to experience this?
Why would the Beggar want Robin Hood to promise only to take his clothes? Might he be hiding something?
Which of the following does the highlighted text demonstrate?
Which of the following lines from the text does not contain a simile?
Robin Hood steals the men's money because he believes they have gotten it dishonestly. Is it right for him to steal from them?
Robin Hood and the Corn Engrosser are shown in the picture below. Does the image match the description in the story? (This annotation contains an image)
Imagine how the man feels, realizing that he has just told his secret to none other than Robin Hood himself.
Chapter 18 - Robin Hood Shoots Before Queen Eleanor
Which of the following is used in the highlighted paragraph?
Why did the author chose to have Richard Partington riding on a "milk-white horse"?
Notice the author's word choice in the highlighted paragraph. What types of words does he use? Words like "tender," "shining," "sweetest," "glimmered,", and "young and golden" show us that this is a pleasant journey.
The highlighted text uses which of the following?
Each of the men who are shooting are very skilled.
Think about how surprised the Bishop will be when he sees Robin Hood and his men.
Based on what you know about Robin Hood and his men, what do you think will happen in the shooting match? Be specific and used examples from the text to support your answer.
What does Robin Hood mean when he says "overcaution spilleth the milk"?
Is this comic true to the story, or are there differences that you can spot? (This annotation contains an image)
In your own words, summarize why Robin Hood is leaving so quickly. Use details from the text to support your answer.
Chapter 19 - The Chase of Robin Hood
Somehow, the Bishop seems to be responsible for Robin Hood's troubles.
From the highlighted text, which of the following can not be inferred about Sir Robert?
Robin Hood and his men should be very grateful for the help they have received from Richard Partington.
Which of the following lines from the text is a metaphor?
Robin Hood has become very comfortable and nearly ended up getting hurt because of it.
What is Robin Hood doing by telling the Cobbler that he is waiting to drop salt on the tails of golden birds?
If you were Robin Hood, would you feel bad that the Cobbler was taken instead of being taken yourself?
Identify a simile in the highlighted text. Write it in the space below.
Robin Hood does not seem to feel badly about taking the Friar's clothes. Do you think it was okay or not?
In your own words, summarize how Robin Hood made it back to Sherwood Forest.
Chapter 20 - Robin Hood and Guy of Gisbourne
Below is a short video from the Disney version of Robin Hood. Watch the clip below, then answer the question that follows. (This annotation contains a video)
After watching the video clip, please think about the similarities and the differences between the text and the video. In the space below, write a three to four sentence explanation of the similarities and the differences.
Robin Hood calls the man's clothes "dainty." Which of the following is the author using here?
Robin Hood and Guy of Gisbourne have a shooting match. Remember, Guy of Gisbourne does not know that it is Robin Hood that he is up against. (This annotation contains an image)
In various versions of Robin Hood, Guy of Gisbourne has different roles. In this version, he is the outlaw sent to find Robin Hood. In another version, he is the Sheriff of Nottingham and eventually joins the Band of Merry Men. (This annotation contains an image)
Why are the three sons of the woman being held by the Sheriff?
Early in the novel, Robin Hood killed one of the King's deer, but he received no punishment for it. Do you think that the Sheriff is behaving so harshly toward these three because of Robin Hood's deed?
What happens when Little John shoots at the Sheriff?
The Sheriff and everyone else believe that Robin Hood has been slain, but as readers, we know that it is Guy of Gisbourne who has been slain. Which of the following is the author using?
Once more, Robin Hood's band of men grows.
Chapter 21 - King Richard Comes to Sherwood Forest
Richard I (September 8, 1157 – April 6, 1199) was King of England from 1189 to 1199. He was often referred to as Richard the Lionheart. He was considered a hero in his day and has often been portrayed as one in works of literature. (This annotation contains an image)
Why does he author include so much imagery to describe the King's entrance?
Think about how angry the Bishop and the Sheriff are probably becoming as Sir Henry tells his tales.
Why is the highlighted text an example of dramatic irony?
Fortunately, Robin Hood only speaks well of the King.
The highlighted text is an example of which of the following?
Sir Richard may be in serious danger for offering to hide Robin Hood and his men from the King.
What is the main reason for King Richard's pardon?
Is this the ending you expected? All along, Robin Hood and his men were outlaws, but were they really "good guys" or "bad guys"?
Chapter 22 - Epilogue
An epilogue is a section of a book that discusses what happens after the book has ended. While not technically a "chapter" in the story, it often fills in details that the end of the story leaves out. Read on to find out what happened to the characters after our story ends.