"Rip Van Winkle"
Rip and his companion had laboured on in silence; for though the former marvelled greatly what could be the object of carrying a keg of liquor up this wild mountain, yet there was something strange and incomprehensible about the unknown, that inspired awe, and checked familiarity.
by Washington Irving
Illustrated by N.C. Wyeth
A POSTHUMOUS WRITING OF DIEDRICH KNICKERBOCKER.
By Woden, God of Saxons,
From whence comes Wensday, that is Wodensday,
Truth is a thing that ever I will keep
Unto thylke day in which I creep into
The following Tale was found among the papers of the late
Diedrich Knickerbocker, an old gentleman of New York, who was
very curious in the Dutch History of the province and the manners
of the descendants from its primitive settlers. His historical
researches, however, did not lie so much among books as among
men; for the former are lamentably scanty on his favorite topics;
whereas he found the old burghers, and still more, their wives,
rich in that legendary lore, so invaluable to true history.
Whenever, therefore, he happened upon a genuine Dutch family,
snugly shut up in its low-roofed farm-house, under a spreading
sycamore, he looked upon it as a little clasped volume of
black-letter, and studied it with the zeal of a bookworm.
The result of all these researches was a history of the province,
during the reign of the Dutch governors, which he published some
years since. There have been various opinions as to the literary
character of his work, and, to tell the truth, it is not a whit
better than it should be. Its chief merit is its scrupulous
accuracy, which indeed was a little questioned on its first
appearance, but has since been completely established; and it is
now admitted into all historical collections, as a book of
The old gentleman died shortly after the publication of his work;
and now that he is dead and gone, it cannot do much harm to his
memory to say that his time might have been much better employed
in weightier labors. He, however, was apt to ride his hobby his
own way; and though it did now and then kick up the dust a little
in the eyes of his neighbors, and grieve the spirit of some
friends, for whom he felt the truest deference and affection, yet
his errors and follies are remembered "more in sorrow than in
anger," and it begins to be suspected, that he never intended to
injure or offend. But however his memory may be appreciated by
critics, it is still held dear among many folks, whose good
opinion is well worth having; particularly by certain
biscuit-bakers, who have gone so far as to imprint his likeness
on their new-year cakes, and have thus given him a chance for
immortality, almost equal to the being stamped on a Waterloo
medal, or a Queen Anne's farthing.
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"Rip Van Winkle, by Washington Irving (1783-1859)
The illustrations are by N.C. Wyeth (1882 - 1945)
published by ( McKay (1921).