Famine, war, pestilence, and death - these are the riders

< Previous | Next >

sb70012

Senior Member
Azerbaijani/Persian
Famine, war, pestilence, and death - these are the riders who passed through the streets of medieval cities and villages by night and by day.
Source: English Literature / The Norman Conquest And Its Effects

Hello,
I have checked WR dictionary but in spite of this I can not understand the blue part. [rider] usually means a person who rides an animal. What does it mean in my text?
rider /ˈraɪdə/ n
  • a person or thing that rides, esp a person who rides a horse, a bicycle, or a motorcycle
  • an additional clause, amendment, or stipulation added to a legal or other document, esp (in Britain) a legislative bill at its third reading
  • Brit a statement made by a jury in addition to its verdict, such as a recommendation for mercy
  • any of various objects or devices resting on, surmounting, or strengthening something else
  • a thin seam, esp of coal or mineral ore, overlying a thicker seam
Thank you
 
  • Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    The term is not used literally here. It is used as a metaphor to mean that these four things regularly "passed through", or happened, in medieval cities.
     

    George French

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Source: English Literature / The Norman Conquest And Its Effects

    Hello,
    I have checked WR dictionary but in spite of this I can not understand the blue part. [rider] usually means a person who rides an animal. What does it mean in my text?

    Thank you
    They are the people, riders (on horse back), who bring famine, war, pestilence, and death. Put differently, they take away the food from people, make war, bring pestilence to make people ill and just kill people.

    GF..

    Not the sort of riders one would want to meet... :thumbsdown:
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English

    cando

    Senior Member
    English - British
    They are the people, riders (on horse back), who bring famine, war, pestilence, and death. Put differently, they take away the food from people, make war, bring pestilence to make people ill and just kill people.

    GF..

    Not the sort of riders one would want to meet... :thumbsdown:

    It is a literary reference to last book of the Bible, (which is called The Apocalypse). They are known as "the four horsemen of the Apocalypse" who ride out causing chaos before the world comes to an end. So, of course, they are symbolic not literal figures. The writer is saying that these human tragedies were common in that period of history (in fact many people at the time did think the world would end in 1000 AD).
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top