Gateway to the Classics: Stories of Guy of Warwick Told to the Children by H. E. Marshall
Stories of Guy of Warwick Told to the Children by  H. E. Marshall

Front Matter

[Book Cover]


Greedily devouring some animal it had just killed.

[Title Page]


About this Book

A thousand years ago, fair maidens, gathering around their embroidery frames, wove in brilliant colors the story of valiant deeds wherewith to adorn the walls of bower or wall. And as in and out the shining needles flashed, and the forms of gallant knights, strange beasts, and fearsome giants took shape beneath their flying fingers, the maidens lent an eager ear to some old dame who told, perchance, the wonderous deeds of brave Sir Guy of Warwick, that gallant knight so courteous and so bold.

A thousand years ago, when the feast was over, and the wine-cup passed around the cheerful board and firelight leaped and flickered on teh wall, the minstrel took his harp and sang. He sang, perchance, of how that great Earl, Guy of Warwick, fought and conquered noisome beasts, fell giants and villains strong, and of how at last he died a holy man.

From mother to daughter, from father to son, from minstrel to minstrel, the story was handed down, until three hundred years or more had come and gone. Then at length, some poet, hearing the story which the minstrels sang and which the old dames told in the twilight hours, dipped his pen in glowing colours, and with gold, and red and blue, and with magic words, wove the story afresh.

Long since, the brilliant tapestry has mouldered into dusts; long since, the voice and harp of minstrel have ceased and the hand of the scribe lain still. But yet the story lives. It is hard to read, though, in the quaint old words of the Saxon poet who wrote long, long ago, and although the story is so old it has not often been told again. So in this little book I have told, not all indeed, but a few of brave Sir Guy's adventures, in the hope that these quaint tales of the world when it was young may please the children of to-day as they pleased the grown-up children in days gone by.

H.E. Marshall



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