It all began with a boy and a sword. When young Arthur pulls an enchanted sword from a stone, his destiny is sealed: He is to become the king of England. Full of powerful wizards and valiant knights, the timeless tale of King Arthur, Camelot, and the Knights of the Round Table is a mix of jealousy, wonder, and heart that has captivated imaginations for centuries.
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Set in fifteenth-century England, Men of Iron offers the finest historical fiction in the best traditions of the Knights of the Round Table and Ivanhoe. Author Howard Pyle, who wrote and illustrated many other classic Arthurian romances and stories of Robin Hood, blends fascinating period detail about knighthood and chivalry with a stirring coming-of-age tale. First published in 1892, this classic story remains a great favorite with young readers as well as among educators, due to the author’s effortless way of teaching virtues such as courage, loyalty, steadfastness, and generosity. An excellent and inspiring choice to read aloud to children as young as nine, it can be read independently by 12- to 16-year-olds.
Myles Falworth was only eight years old the day a knight in black rode into the courtyard of his father's castle with murderous intent, triggering a chain of events that brought disgrace to the house of Falworth. In spite of his family's disgrace, young Myles quickly wins a reputation for courage and independence while in training as a knight at the castle of the great Earl of Mackworth. Then one day, when Myles is sixteen, he discover that his blind father has been condemned for treason, and is being hunted by a powerful enemy who is close to the King. To challenge the King's champion means certain death. Myles must fight to restore his family's rights, but does he dare to risk battle to win back his family's honor?
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In the pleasurable warmth the heart feels in answer to tales of derring-do Nelson's battles are all mightily interesting, but, even in spite of their romance of splendid courage, I fancy that the majority of us would rather turn back over the leaves of history to read how Drake captured the Spanish treasure ship in the South Sea, and of how he divided such a quantity of booty in the Island of Plate (so named because of the tremendous dividend there declared) that it had to be measured in quart bowls, being too considerable to be counted.
Courage and daring, no matter how mad and ungodly, have always a redundancy of vimand life to recommend them to the nether man that lies within us, and no doubt his desperate courage, his battle against the tremendous odds of all the civilized world of law and order, have had much to do in making a popular hero of our friend of the black flag. But it is not altogether courage and daring that endear him to our hearts. There is another and perhaps a greater kinship in that lust for wealth that makes one's fancy revel more pleasantly in the story of the division of treasure in the pirate's island retreat, the hiding of his godless gains somewhere in the sandy stretch of tropic beach, there to remain hidden until the time should come to rake the doubloons up again and to spend them like a lord in polite society, than in the most thrilling tales of his wonderful escapes from commissioned cruisers through tortuous channels between the coral reefs.
After showing how Arthur established his right to the throne by drawing the sword from the anvil, the author then relates the story of Arthur's battle with the Sable Knight and his securing the sword Excalibur ― "the most beautiful and the most famous sword in all the world." He tells of Arthur's confrontations with the Duke of North Umber and Sir Pellias, describes King Arthur's wooing and wedding the Lady Guinevere, and tells of the establishment of the Round Table. Tales are told, too, of Arthur's knights, including Merlin the Wise, Sir Pellias (or the Gentle Knight) and of course, Sir Gawaine. One of the key points in the book is Arthur's search for the answer to the riddle "What is it that a woman most desires?" with his life at stake.
This is the definitive children's version of the Arthurian legend, for generations a special favorite with youngsters of all ages. Its reputation, richly deserved, rests as much upon the illustrations as on the delightful tales themselves. And no wonder, for as an illustrator of children's books, Pyle had no peer. Bold and unforgettable as only Pyle's skilled hand could make them, these drawings convey at a glance the whole aura of that splendid age and help to make this a book that boys and girls will cherish for years to come.
These stories have inspired numerous film adaptations, including the 2017 release Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur, directed by Guy Ritchie and starring Charlie Hunnam, Jude Law, Eric Bana, Djimon Hounsou, and Annabelle Wallis.
"Not only Robin himself but all the band were outlaws and dwelt apart from other men, yet they were beloved by the country people round about, for no one ever came to Jolly Robin for help in time of need and went away again with an empty fist."
Pyle takes the reader along with Robin Hood and his band on their merry adventures. They tell of Little John, Will Scarlet, and Allan a Dale, and how they came to join the band; how Robin Hood escaped the arrows of the grim Sheriff of Nottingham, and later revenged himself; what happened at the court of the gentle Queen Eleanor. The tales go on to tell of Little John as a barefoot friar, and Robin Hood as a beggar; the chase by the quick-tempered Henry II; a visit from the good King Richard of the Lion's Heart; and all the other exploits of Robin Hood and his band.
This is the best version of the classic stories and the only edition that reproduces both the original (1883) Pyle text and the famous Pyle illustrations in their entirety, including the page decorations. A favorite for generations, it will be welcomed again by parents and children alike in this sturdy paperback edition.
The beloved adventures of Robin Hood come vividly to life in this wonderful illustrated version by renowned storyteller Howard Pyle. Deep in Sherwood Forest, the legendary Robin Hood—the brave, good-humored outlaw the whole world loves—proves himself the best in England with his bow. Here are all the exciting tales of how Little John, Will Scarlet, Allan a Dale, and Friar Tuck joined his merry band of men . . . Robin Hood’s breathtaking escapes from his archenemy, the Sheriff of Nottingham . . . and one hilarious escapade after another filled with quick action, scheming villains, and great surprises. Days of old bursting with pageantry, knights, and beautiful maidens return in a superb edition of this favorite classic story.
From the Paperback edition.
The book begins with the exciting story of Sir Geraint — how he fought with the knights of the Sparrow-Hawk, how he set right the wrongs of the earldom, how he destroyed three giants of the highway and more. The narrative then takes up the thrilling exploits of Sir Galahad ("the most perfect knight who ever lived"): his initiation into knighthood, how he came to the court of King Arthur and his quest for the Holy Grail. Finally, there are the last chapters in the life of King Arthur — his attack on Sir Lancelot, his fatal battle with Sir Mordred and Arthur's final journey to Avalon.
Recounted in language appropriately medieval in flavor and enhanced with 39 of Howard Pyle's richly atmospheric illustrations, these tales promise a splendid reading experience — a magical journey to a far-off time and a bygone world of knightly valor and chivalric romance.
While stories and ballads about the character of Robin Hood existed prior to the publication of The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood, tales of the famous outlaw had never before been gathered into a cohesive narrative. Our understanding of Robin Hood as a hero instead of a crook largely stems from author Howard Pyle’s depiction of him in this book.
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The narrative is told with Howard Pyle's consummate skill and illustrated with some of the most enchanting sketches ever done for a book of this type. Like the same author's version of The Story of King Arthur and His Knights and his collection of original stories known as The Wonder Clock, this book has become a legend, a modern story with the feel and sound of an ancient tale. It is a reading adventure that youngsters will not soon forget.