Washington Irving who lived between the Civil and the American Revolutionary wars created The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. It is the union of all the necessary elements which are logically presented and the unique atmosphere “with objects of superstitious awe”ť (Washington Irving 53) preserved.
Obviously, his story is a successful combination of humorous descriptions of characters, their actions in everyday life in theCatskill Mountainsand horror episodes in the Sleepy Hollow making the flesh creep. “”¦The visionary propensity”¦ is not confined to the native inhabitants of the valley, but is unconsciously imbibed by everyone”¦”ť (WashingtonIrving5)
Sharp humor is revealed in describing Ichabord Crane, his attitude to pupils and his rival Brom Bones, the lady of their dreams Katrina and the old farmers of the valley who believed in ghosts. Crane was popular among local women “reciting for their amusement all the epitaphs on the tombstones”ť (Washington Irving 11). His food preferences are humorously depicted, “he was a huge feeder, and though lank, had the dilating powers of an anaconda”ť (Washington Irving 9). That is why wishing to marry Katrina Van Tassel, he imagined her family fields, pastures and domestic animals in the form delicious dishes, which may be possibly cooked.
In the story together with humorous characters there live fearful ghosts, monsters and a headless goblin. The horrible goblin threw his head at him and Crane fainted. People supposed, that “Ichabod had been carried off by the Galloping Hessian”ť, (Washington Irving 52), others said he was alive but left the place. The story is mysterious and humorous at the same time and each reader can try to guess about Cranes destiny.