The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

Ichabod Crane: A Farcical Character, and a Political Allegory College

Washington Irving’s “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” is a story beloved my many, and Ichabod Crane is a highly debated character. Some believe he is merely a man that helped to tell the tale of the legendary Headless Horseman, and others see him as an antihero that represents the human nature. This strange character is both those things, but one thing stands above the rest when analyzing such a remarkable schoolteacher. Ichabod Crane is a farce character that loosely mimics the British rule over America and its ultimate demise. He is an embodiment of the way Americans viewed the British after the Revolution with his lofty character, insatiable appetite, and severe cowardice. He may seem the hero, but, in reality, he is simply a mockery.

Ichabod Crane is a strange name in and of itself, but Ichabod’s appearance and personality help form the character that fits the name. He does not look like a normal hero; he looks famished, and utterly ugly, a prime example of a farce character. He is described as having a lanky body, small head, and big ears and feet. Irving also states that “one might have mistaken him for… some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield” (758). When Ichabod is riding the horse, Gunpowder, the narrator cannot help but...

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