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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a short story by American author, essayist, biographer, historian, and diplomat Washington Irving, (April 3, 1783 – November 28, 1859). Written while Irving was in England the story was first published in 1820, and is among the earliest examples of American fiction. In the story set in 1790 in the Dutch settlement of Tarry Town there exists a secluded glen called Sleepy Hollow, renowned for its ghosts and haunting atmosphere. The most infamous specter in the Hollow is the Headless Horseman, said to be the ghost of a Hessian soldier who was killed when a canon ball took off his head during the American Revolutionary War. The horseman is said to nightly ride to the scene of the battle searching for his head. Sleepy Hollow’s school master is Ichabod Crane, who encounters the Horseman one night and is never heard from again; his encounter and subsequent disappearance becoming the legend of sleepy hollow.


Ichabod Crane. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. 1820

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