Topics for Further Study
Many critics have studied Irving's familiarity with seventeenthcentury Dutch or Flemish painting, and Rip himself thinks of an "old Flemish painting’’ when he sees the bowling men in their unusual clothing. Find copies of paintings of country life by Adriaen Brouwer, Willem Buytewech, Jan Steen, Adriaen van Ostade, Esaias van de Velde, or others of the socalled Dutch genre painters. Is Rip's perception that the strangers make up a "melancholy party of pleasure'' echoed in the scenes depicted in the paintings?
Make a list of important published writings by Americans in the first quarter of the nineteenth century. In what ways are Irving's stories unusual? What do they share with other...
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