Washington Irving was a prolific writer of essays, travel accounts, histories, biographies and short stories.
He is perhaps best known for his short stories 'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow' and 'Rip Van Winkle' which appeared in his 'The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent'.
Published in Britain by John Murray in 1820, 'The Sketch Book' was very popular and helped establish the reputation of American writers in Europe.
Byron and Scott
Irving's visits to Scott's and Byron's homes produced a travel account, 'Abbotsford and Newstead Abbey' (1835).
Irving travelled extensively, particularly to Spain where he was ambassador to Madrid. His interest in Spanish history and research in Spanish archives produced a number of histories.