In an article for The Guardian, Stephen Moss tracks down the real Robin Hood:
‘Robin Hood was almost certainly a pedestrian,” David Crook, the retired former assistant keeper of public records at the Public Record Office, tells me over tea one afternoon at his home in Grantham. Robin, in other words, had no horse. This is significant, because, as I settle down to try to unravel the eight centuries of myth and legend that have accreted around the outlaw, I am looking at a still from the new Ridley Scott movie, which will open the Cannes film festival on 12 May. Russell Crowe – looking the spit of Maximus, the hero of Gladiator, with cropped hair, bloodied cheek and an expression of furious determination – is astride a horse.
Moss relentlessly questions local mayors, tourism officials and the current Sheriff of Nottingham to expose the shocking, horrible, utterly predictable truth that most people couldn’t care less if a real Robin Hood ever existed.
Fortunately Moss is a rather lighthearted muckracker and his article is quite entertaining.
[Thanks to David Klaus for the link.]