Thursday, 25 October 2018


Finished October 7
Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott

This novel has a number of conflicts in it, taking place in England during the time that Richard I, the Lionhearted was returning from the Crusades. His brother Prince John has been ruling in his absence, and has a plot to continue to rule. Ivanhoe was one of the knights travelling with Richard, and distinguished himself while away.
As the novel begins, a Saxon lord, Cedric, and his ward Rowena are visiting by a Norman lord who lives nearby. The Norman lord is Brian de Bois-Guilbert, a member of the Knights Templar. Cedric knows he must play host, but does not enjoy this task of hosting Normans, hoping for a future Saxon king by wedding Rowena to another strong Saxon lord Athelstane. Cedric has banished his son Wilfred for wanting to marry Rowena himself. Wilfred had been given the manor of Ivanhoe by Richard I, but while both were away at the crusades, John gave it to Reginald Front-de-Boeuf, another Norman.
There is much wearing of disguises in the book as people pretend to be other than who they are. There is also intrigue as the Normans ambush and capture Cedris, Rowena, Isaac the Jew, his daughter Rebecca, and others in order to further their own ambitions.
We also have the hero Locksley, also known as Robin Hood, with his men, who are called upon to help rescue the captured.
There is jousting, hand combat, Jews, Christian monks, and many others who take roles in the many divides in the book.
I appreciated the character list at the beginning, which also told you the disguises the characters took, so you had a better sense of what was happening.

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