Maid Marian

Maid Marian
   From about 1500, Marian appears among *Robin Hood's companions; she is said to be his sweetheart who joins him in outlawry. She is chiefly important in *May Day celebrations, court entertainments, and stage and literary tradition; the ballads rarely mention her. She may have been imported from French literature, where 'Robin et Marion' had been stock names for country lovers since the 13th century. But there was also an English 'Marian', a comic figure played by a man in drag, who accompanied Elizabethan morris dancers; he is usually linked to the Fool who, according to a tract of 1589, 'dances round him in a cotton coat, to court him with a leathern pudding' (i.e. a mock sausage, no doubt bawdily used). It is unclear which type of Marian came first, and whether either influenced the other.

A Dictionary of English folklore. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Maid Marian — Marian Ma ri*an, a. Pertaining to the Virgin Mary, or sometimes to Mary, Queen of England, daughter of Henry VIII. [1913 Webster] Of all the Marian martyrs, Mr. Philpot was the best born gentleman. Fuller. [1913 Webster] {Maid Marian}. (a) See… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Maid Marian — n. 1. a character in old May Day games and morris dances 2. Eng. Legend Robin Hood s sweetheart …   English World dictionary

  • Maid Marian — For the locomotive, see Maid Marian (locomotive). For the novel by Thomas Love Peacock, see Maid Marian (novel). Robin Hood and Maid Marian (poster, ca. 1880) Maid Marian is the wife of the legendary English outlaw Robin Hood. Stemming from… …   Wikipedia

  • Maid Marian — Robin Hood ou la Forêt de Sherwood Robin des Bois et Maid Marian Auteur Thomas Love Peacock Genre roman satirique …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Maid Marian — Maid Mar|i|an a woman who, in old English stories, has a romantic relationship with ↑Robin Hood …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Maid Marian — Maid′ Mar′ian n. lit. Robin Hood s sweetheart …   From formal English to slang

  • Maid Marian — noun Date: circa 1525 a companion of Robin Hood in some forms of his legend …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Maid Marian — 1. one of the characters in the old morris dance and May Day festivities; May queen. 2. Robin Hood s sweetheart. * * * …   Universalium

  • MAID MARIAN —    a man dressed as a woman who grimaced and performed antics in the morris dances …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Maid Marian — /meɪd ˈmæriən/ (say mayd mareeuhn) noun 1. (originally) Queen of the May, one of the characters in the old morris dance. 2. Robin Hood s sweetheart …   Australian English dictionary