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We’ve all – in one way or another – been influenced by the written word. I was very much a reading child – and thus I was very much influenced by what I read; by the worlds which opened up around me as I turned each page.

So I thought that maybe it would make for an interesting blog series if I wrote about the grand, bookish adventures that I went on in my younger years (which makes me sound oh so old. Ha!).

Ivanhoe

by Walter Scott

When our next door neighbour gave my brother Ivanhoe it was the natural thing for me to read it. And read it I did.

I loved it. The characters oh, the characters.The book would not be so wonderful without such a diverse cast: Wamba, Gurth, Isaac the Jew, Athelstane, Rebecca, the Black Knight …

Perhaps the only one I was not partial to was the title character himself – Wilfred of Ivanhoe. I recall finding him a little, well, bland. He did not have the joyous and clever foolishness of Wamba (Pax vobiscum!) nor the tempestuousness of his father, that stubborn and loyal to the bone Saxon, Cedric.

The adventure itself is such a good one – the Black Knight is brilliant. The funeral scene, hilarious. Rebecca’s trial, suspenseful.

No complaints over arduous descriptions from me – I throughly enjoyed reading this tale.

And did I mention that a certain Outlaw plays a prominent part in this adventure? No? Well he does. So does Friar Tuck … who sings.

Ahem.

And the quote which has stuck itself in my mind and causes me a fair bit of amusement when I think of Ivanhoe?

I forgive you, Sir Knight,” said Rowena, “as a Christian.”

“That means,” said Wamba, “that she does not forgive him at all.

Once, I tried to read another of Sir Walter Scott’s works – the Bride of the Lammermoor. Yeah … but that is another tale for another day.

The problem with writing this type of post is that it makes me want to read the book all over again, I suppose the benefit of reading it as an adult is that one sees the same words with new eyes – the same adventure, but with a greater awareness.

Ivanhoe can be read for free here and bought at a good price here.

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