The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson

The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson

The story takes place in medieval England. It was the period of the reign of King Henry the Fourth and the widely known bloody war between the Red and the White Roses. Richard Shelton is the main character of the story. He is the son of a famous English knight. The young man will have to face numerous ordeals. A messenger arrives in the village, which is owned by Sir Burkeley. He brings an urgent order for all men to go on the march immediately. At this time, a black arrow flies into the castle with a note in which a famous rogue tells, that he wans to kill Sir Burkeley. This is where the story begins. This is classic chivalrous prose at its best. This is a tale of sword battles, revenge for fathers and battles for restoring honor.

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The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson

The bell of Moat House Castle at Tunstall rang loudly one spring afternoon. The people of the village looked up at the castle.

‘What’s happening?’ asked one man.

‘I don’t know,’ said another. ‘A messenger brought a letter for Sir Oliver Oates, the priest, half an hour ago. It was from Sir Daniel Brackley.’

‘But why is the bell ringing?’ asked an old man.

The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson

Suddenly a handsome young man appeared on his grey horse. He was about eighteen years old and had brown hair and blue eyes. He had a bow and arrow on his back. His name was Richard Shelton and he was Sir Daniel’s ward.

Richard Shelton looked at the people around him and said, ‘There will be a big battle soon! Sir Daniel wants everyone to fight.’

‘Another battle!’ cried an angry woman. ‘This is terrible! Our men go and die in battles, and their wives and children are hungry.’

‘We pay high taxes to Sir Daniel and we don’t have any money for food,’ said a young mother with three small children.

‘Who is Sir Daniel fighting for today?’ asked a tall man. Lancaster or York?’

‘I’m sorry, I don’t know,’ said Richard, and his face became red.

Sir Daniel Brackley was not a loyal man and the people did not like him. He seemed to always change his mind: sometimes he fought for Lancaster and sometimes he fought for York.

A big man on a black horse appeared. It was Bennet Hatch, Sir Daniel’s best friend. He was about forty and had dark hair and an unfriendly face.

‘All of the men in the village must go to Moat House Castle and get ready for the battle!’ Hatch cried.

Then Hatch looked at Richard and said, ‘Let’s go to Nick Appleyard’s house.’

When they arrived Hatch said, ‘Nick Appleyard, you must go and defend Moat House Castle because Sir Daniel is going to Kettley to fight.’

While the two men were talking, a black arrow suddenly hit Nick Appleyard in the back and killed him…

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