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The Black Arrow is a novel by Robert Louis Stevenson. It is both an historical adventure novel and a romance novel. It first appeared as a serial in 1883 with the subtitle "A Tale of Tunstall Forest" beginning in Young Folks; A Boys' and Girls' Paper of Instructive and Entertaining Literature, vol. XXII, no. 656 (Saturday, June 30, 1883) and ending in the issue for Saturday, October 20, 1883—Stevenson had finished writing it by the end of summer. It was printed under the pseudonym Captain George North. He alludes to the time gap between the serialization and the publication as one volume in 1888 in his preface "Critic [parodying Dickens's 'Cricket'] on the Hearth": "The tale was written years ago for a particular audience…" The Paston Letters were Stevenson's main literary source for The Black Arrow.
The Black Arrow tells the story of Richard (Dick) Shelton during the Wars of the Roses: how he becomes a knight, rescues his lady Joanna Sedley, and obtains justice for the murder of his father, Sir Harry Shelton. Outlaws in Tunstall Forest organized by Ellis Duckworth, whose weapon and calling card is a black arrow, cause Dick to suspect that his guardian Sir Daniel Brackley and his retainers are responsible for his father's murder. Dick's suspicions are enough to turn Sir Daniel against him, so he has no recourse but to escape from Sir Daniel and join the outlaws of the Black Arrow against him. This struggle sweeps him up into the greater conflict surrounding them all.