(in English balladry) a member of Robin Hood’s band who carried off his sweetheart just before she was to be forced into marriage with an aged knight.
Historical Examples

“Allan-a-Dale and Fennel shall go with you, dear heart,” said Robin.
Robin Hood Paul Creswick

He asked of my ‘house and my home,’ as they did of Allan-a-Dale.
Ayala’s Angel Anthony Trollope

The target was now cleared for the next two contestants—Geoffrey and Allan-a-Dale.
Robin Hood J. Walker McSpadden

This was to convey a letter to Marian, and to discover how Allan-a-Dale and his little wife were faring.
Robin Hood Paul Creswick

Allan-a-Dale could pick a pocket or cut a purse, accomplishments in which I am altogether deficient.
Ayala’s Angel Anthony Trollope

Allan-a-Dale also escorted Mistress Dale on horseback, for she was to be matron-of-honor at the wedding.
Robin Hood J. Walker McSpadden

“It is impossible that Allan-a-Dale can have thus treated a man of your reverend bearing,” replied the Captain.
Ivanhoe Walter Scott

Then he again asked the important question, to which Allan-a-Dale’s answer was so unreasonable and so successful.
Ayala’s Angel Anthony Trollope

All listened while the minstrel touched his harp, and the beautiful voice of Allan-a-Dale sang the plaintive old ballad Islington.
A Book of Bryn Mawr Stories Marian T. MacIntosh

Allan-a-Dale has become a gentleman, and Friar Tuck laid down the quarter-staff, if he has not taken up the breviary.
Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 61, No. 379, May, 1847 Various

(in English balladry) a member of Robin Hood’s band who saved his sweetheart from an enforced marriage and married her himself


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