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The Robin Hood character, portrayed as a historical outlawed yeoman emerges in the late 16th century. Maid Marian has usually been cast in terms of a noblewoman.
In Robin Hood and Maid Marian (Child Ballad 150, perhaps dating to the 17th century), Maid Marian is "a bonny fine maid of a noble degree" said to excel even Helen of Troy in beauty. Separated from her lover, she dresses as a page "and ranged the wood to find Robin Hood," who was himself disguised, so that the two begin to fight when they meet. As is often the case in these ballads, Robin Hood loses the fight to comical effect, and Marian only recognizes him when he asks for quarter. This ballad is in the "Earl of Huntington" tradition, a supposed "historical identity" of Robin Hood forwarded in the late 16th century.
In some tales, Richard at the Lee is her father.
Public Domain Appearances
- Robin Hood and Maid Marian
- Robin Hood and Queen Katherine
- Robin Hood's Golden Prize
- Maid Marian
- Maid Marian — 1822 novel by Thomas Love Peacock
- Robin Hood (1912)
- Robin Hood Outlawed (1912)
- Robin Hood (1913)
- Robin Hood (1922)