Hans Brinker or the Silver Skates
is a novel by Mary Mapes Dodge of which a small part became an American legend: a tale called The Hero of Haarlem
(in the novel this tale is read out in class) about a Dutch
boy that saved his country by putting his finger in a leaking dyke, and staying there all night in spite of the cold.
In the original tale this hero remains nameless, but he was later called Hans Brinker, which is actually the main character of the novel.
In Spaarndam (mun. Haarlemmerliede en Spaarnwoude) a statue of this fictional brave boy has been erected.
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