As part of my ongoing Robin Hood kick, I thought I'd research him just a little for yet another BIP Bingo post that's taking me out of my box and making me think.
Here's some random quotes I've found:
By 1300 at least 8 people were called Robinhood, and at least 5 of those were fugitives from the law. In 1266 the Sherrif of Nottingham, William de Grey, was in active conflict with outlaws in Sherwood Forest. It seems most likely that a number of different outlaws built upon the reputation of a fugitive in the forest, and over time, the legend grew. BritainExpress.com
Despite Robin's "legend" status, there are many reasons to believe that Robin Hood could well have been a real historical figure. Researchers into the legend have uncovered compelling evidence about this historical period here in Nottingham that points to an underlying reality for our favourite Outlaw. The Robin Hood Legend
It is at Kirklees Priory that the supposed grave of Robin Hood can still be seen to this day.
Stephen Knight said in an interview,
"I'm skeptical that there was a real Robin Hood. I think it is a mythic name like Santa Claus. You become Santa Claus when you put a beard on and give presents to children at Christmas. And you become Robin Hood when you're an outlaw, and live in the forest shooting the king's deer. That did happen."
Criminals weren't the only to take the name "Robin Hood". The outlaw legend became a celebrated part of the May Games. Robin was seen as a mythic summer king leading a procession. This tied Robin into other forest legends. BoldOutlaw.com
Modern literature regarding Robin Hood begain to appear in the 1800's. Many of these authors merely collected the stories from the old ballads; others tried to link the ballads together into a single cohesive story. Still others used the ballads as a starting place for their own original interpretations. Shadows of Sherwood
Also from Shadows of Sherwood: a link to a list of Robin Hood novels and a link of a list of Robin Hood movies
Here's some images of Robin Hood. Who's your favorite?
Here's the trailer for the upcoming movie, to be released May 14th:
And so what do I think about Robin Hood? My conclusion is the same as what I think about King Arthur. There was someone that the ballads and stories were based on. Through the generations, things changed and perhaps several different people's stories were melded into one. But somewhere, sometime, someone existed that made these stories have a beginning. So, yes, I believe! Do you?