Our narrator spends a lot of time telling us how ridiculous Ichabod looks.
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow Summary | GradeSaver
The whole paragraph that introduces Ichabod is about how tall, skinny, and awkward the guy is, and it ends with this gem of a sentence:. To see him striding along the profile of a hill on a windy day, with his clothes bagging and fluttering about him, one might have mistaken him for the genius of famine descending upon the earth, or some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield. Not exactly flattering. It doesn't help his case that Ichabod just likes to hang out with ladies—chilling, sharing ghost stories, doing housework.
That's normal, right?
Not in , it isn't. We have more enlightened ideas of gender roles today, but things were a lot stricter back in the day. Men did manly things, women did womanly things, and that was that. The fact that Ichabod is a pretty feminine guy—he gossips, he babysits, and he rocks cradles—sets off some red flags. Gluttony, envy, pride, and wrath?
The Legend of the Sleepy Hollow (Book Review Essay Sample)
Check, check, check, and check. Since Ichabod is not-so-likeable in pretty much every way, we thought it would fun to break it down for you, seven deadly sins style. As cowardly as he can be, Ichabod sure has a temper. At school, Ichabod whips his students and rules over them like a cruel tyrant:. In his hand he swayed a ferule, that sceptre of despotic power; the birch of justice reposed on three nails.
We know that he's just waiting to hit someone with that stick. At this point, he's powerless, so his wrath is just latent, waiting to come out. But once he's rich, he'll be ready to tell everyone what he really feels 1. Man, oh man, is Ichabod greedy. He's mad with desire for wealth, power, and status. After all, the only reason he wants to marry Katrina is so he can strike it rich.
We'd probably be able to forgive Ichabod if he just wanted to have enough food to eat or, say, a non-broken mirror to use. But no, he wants to be filthy stinkin' rich. To learn more about Ichabod's greed, check out what we have to say in the "Themes" section. Okay, we might have to give Ichabod a pass here.
He isn't really interested in the ladies in the slightest. All this guy cares about is food. Speaking of which, Ichabod is the most gluttonous of all literary gluttons. He even beats Augustus Gloop. Our narrator continually makes references to Ichabod's literal and metaphorical appetite—oh, and his huge mouth. He clearly wants us to get the point. Nearly all of Ichabod's thoughts revolve around food. Come on, what kind of normal person looks at a farm and sees, "not a turkey but […] a necklace of savory sausages" 1.
Seriously, a necklace of sausages? And who, when walking through the forest, thinks "of dainty slapjacks, well buttered, and garnished with honey or treacle, by the delicate little dimpled hand of Katrina Van Tassel" 1.
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Someone with an intense case of the munchies, that's who. So how does he stay so slim? And why does the narrator make it a point to tell us? Let's try this on for size: maybe we're supposed to think that Ichabod's hunger is insatiable. He's so greedy that he'll never be satisfied with what he has. What do you think? Ichabod doesn't seem lazy.
He teaches during the week, leads choir on the weekends, and does housework for his landlords. That's a lot of stuff to fit in between his dates with the old Dutch ladies. But here's the thing: he has to do all this—it's how Ichabod makes his meager living and stays out of trouble. The more important question is, what does Ichabod want to do?
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She's carried a torch for him for years. Now they're both feeling the heat The collision of Crane and Brom Bones is a collision of the old supernatural traditions and modern creativity and rationalism. The legend of the headless horseman builds on historical facts but is equally ambiguous and confusing. By contrast, Brom Bones exemplifies the triumph of creativity and inventiveness in the contemporary American culture. While Crane tries to satisfy his appetite for the marvelous Irving 12 , Brom builds complex strategies to beat his rival with his own hands.
What Ichabod considers to be one of his strongest sides eventually turns against him. In this way, Irving celebrates the triumph of creative modernity over the outdated intellectualism and arrogant traditionality that throw Ichabod Crane deep into the romantic and spiritual abyss.
Ichabod Crane is the representative of the old stability and shrewdness, whereas Brom van Brunt carries the spirit of modernity and change.
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