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The Bandit

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"The Bandit" is a short poem by L. Frank Baum. It was included in his collection Father Goose (1899), and re-appeared in musical form in The Songs of Father Goose (1900).

The poem celebrates the stereotypical bandit of folklore and opera:

The Bandit is a handsome man,
In operas he sings;
He wears a wig and fierce mustache
And many other things.
He looks just like a robber bold,
When on the stage he stands.
Real bandits lived in times of old,
In distant, foreign lands.

W. W. Denslow's illustrations show the bandit and three henchmen equipped with daggers, pistols, and a blunderbuss.

Baum employs such stereotypical Italianate bandits elsewhere in his works — as in his story "The Box of Robbers," one of the American Fairy Tales (1901). Sicilian brigands play an important role in Baum's novel Aunt Jane's Nieces Abroad (1907).

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