Time Essay: The Returned: A New Rip Van Winkle

The very village was altered; it was larger and more populous. There were rows of houses which he had never seen before, and those which had been his familiar haunts had disappeared. Strange names were over the doors—strange faces at the windows—everything was strange...the very character of the people seemed changed. There was a busy, bustling disputatious tone about it...A fellow...was haranguing vehemently about rights of citizens—elections—members of Congress —liberty...and other words which were a perfect Babylonish jargon...

WASHINGTON IRVING set his story in the late 18th century, when it took 20 years...

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