The Puddelbee Company

The Ingoldsby Legends

Thomas Ingoldsby Esq.

Thomas Ingoldsby Esquire of Tappington Everard in Kent was in reality a contributor to Bentley’s Miscellany and the owner of Tappington Hall in Kent. Since his death in 1845, his identity has become well known, but for his tales and verse he is best remembered as Thomas Ingoldsby.

Born in Canterbury on 6th December 1788, in his twenties he was ordained in the Church of England and initially served as curate in Ashford and then Westwell. After his marriage in 1814, he was awarded a living at Snargate, and the nearby curacy at Warehorn, in Romney Marsh. It is probably during this period that he collected most of the Kentish folk tales and contemporary stories which became The Ingoldsby Legends.

In 1821 he was appointed a minor canon at St Paul’s Cathedral, and in 1825 as Priest in Ordinary at the Chapel Royal. In 1826 he started contributing to Blackwood’s Magazine, and in 1837 the Ingoldsby Legends first appeared in Bentley’s.

The Ingoldsby Legends or Mirth and Marvels, is a collection of Kentish folk tales, humorous stories and verse, originally published in Bentley’s Miscellany between 1837 and 1845, and in collected volumes in 1840, 1842, and 1847. All the stories are original compositions by the author, but derive from traditional oral tales, anecdotes, historical sources, and contemporary pamphlets and broadsheets. The Ingoldsby Legends, put these into a new form, with emphasis on the humour of sometimes tragic situations, including ballad-like verse which was a popular amongst the readers of the 19th Century magazines, and tales narrated in the vernacular.

Folklore and Heritage Edition

This edition of The Ingoldsby Legends is adapted from the 1888 edition published by Frederick Warne, which with the addition of an extended biography is mainly a reprint of the 1847 edition. The order of presentation has been changed, but no material has been omitted.

Author Illustation: Thomas Ingoldsby Esq., Illustration from the 1888 edition by George Cruickshank

Cover Illustation: A Saint, from the “Jackdaw of Rheims”, by Briton Rivière, 1868

Copyright Statement

To the best of my knowledge all rights to the content of works published in the Forgotten Classics edition of The Ingoldsby legends, including illustrations, resides in the public domain in all territories. Ownership to the particular layout and design of a specific publication is claimed by the publisher. Fair use, including non-commercial distribution and reproduction of the publication in electronic and printed form, is allowed with attribution to “The Puddelbee Company” as the source.