Themes In Irving's The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow

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Literature has evolved through different time periods throughout the years. From 1620-1720, the era was known as Puritanism. The Puritans came from Europe to the New World to be able to practice their religion without punishment. In England, the Church of England has become corrupt and the Puritans want to return the church to a simpler form. They value cleanliness and no show of wealth. In this strict religious society it is hard to be accepted unless you have a connection with God. Then the Age of Reason brought ideas of freedom which made people want to get away from the strict Puritan society. By the time of the American Revolution, very few people still believed and followed the Puritan religion and practices. These new ideas caused by…show more content…
The farms are thriving and all of the nature is valued by the townspeople. Ichabod Crane is a very greedy and selfish person. When he is invited to a dinner at one of the wealthiest farm owner’s home, instead of appreciating the thriving and abundant farm and the careful use of nature, he instantly thinks of the cash that comes with it and the food that it produces. The speaker says, “As the enraptured Ichabod fancied all this, and as he rolled his great green eyes over fat meadow lands, the rich fields of wheat, of rye, of buckwheat, and Indian corn, and the orchards burdened with ruddy fruit,... his heart yearned after the damsel who was to inherit these domains, and his imagination expanded with the idea of how they might readily turned into cash…” (pg 6). Ichabod has the opportunity to come to a beautiful prosperous farm and instead of appreciating the use of nature and how magnificent it is, he instantly sees it as a way to make money and always have food available to him. He does not appreciate the simplicity of Sleepy Hollow, instead he thinks of ways to take advantage of what the small town has to offer which is its nature. Irving uses Ichabod to show a side of people that only see nature as an opportunity to better themselves. Ichabod’s intentions are not good, they only benefit himself and destroy things in the process. Throughout the story Ichabod tries everything to change his destiny and where he will end up in life, but in Bryant’s poem, he explains that it is ok to be alone and to believe in your
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