Cervantes Saavedra, Miguel de, 1547-1616
Ormsby, John, 1829-1895, Translator
A Project Gutenberg e-text

Contents:

Translator's Preface I: About This Translation
Translator's Preface IIa: About Cervantes And Don Quixote
Translator's Preface IIb: About Cervantes And Don Quixote (Part II)
Translator's Preface IIc: About Cervantes And Don Quixote (Part III)
Translator's Preface IIc: About Cervantes And Don Quixote (Part IV)
Author's Preface
Dedication Of Part I: To The Duke Of Bejar, Marquis Of Gibraleon, Count Of Enalcazar and Banares, Vicecount Of The Puebla De Alcocer, Master Of The Towns Of Capilla, Curiel And Burguillos
Chapter I: Which Treats Of The Character and Pursuits of the Famous Gentleman Don Quixote Of La Mancha
Chapter II: Which Treats Of The First Sally The Ingenious Don Quixote Made From Home
Chapter III: Wherein Is Related The Droll Way In Which Don Quixote Had Himself Dubbed A Knight
Chapter IV: Of What Happened To Our Knight When He Left The Inn
Chapter V: In Which The Narrative Of Our Knight's Mishap Is Continued
Chapter VI: Of The Diverting And Important Scrutiny Which The Curate And The Barber Made In The Library Of Our Ingenious Gentleman
Chapter VII: Of The Second Sally Of Our Worthy Knight Don Quixote Of La Mancha
Chapter VIII: Of The Good Fortune Which The Valiant Don Quixote Had In The Terrible And Undreamt-Of Adventure Of The Windmills, With Other Occurrences Worthy To Be Fitly Recorded
Chapter IX: In Which Is Concluded And Finished The Terrific Battle Between The Gallant Biscayan And The Valiant Manchegan
Chapter X: Of The Pleasant Discourse That Passed Between Don Quixote And His Squire Sancho Panza
Chapter XI: Of What Befell Don Quixote With Certain Goatherds
Chapter XII: Of What A Goatherd Related To Those With Don Quixote.
Chapter XIII: In Which Is Ended The Story Of The Shepherdess Marcela, With Other Incidents
Chapter XIV:Wherein Are Inserted The Despairing Verses Of The Dead Shepherd, Together With Other Incidents Not Looked For
Chapter XV:In Which Is Related The Unfortunate Adventure That Don Quixote Fell In With When He Fell Out With Certain Heartless Yanguesans
Chapter XVI:Of What Happened To The Ingenious Gentleman In The Inn Which He Took To Be A Castle
Chapter XVII:In Which Are Contained The Innumerable Troubles Which The Brave Don Quixote And His Good Squire Sancho Panza Endured In The Inn, Which To His Misfortune He Took To Be A Castle
Chapter XVIII:In Which Is Related The Discourse Sancho Panza Held With His Master, Don Quixote, And Other Adventures Worth Relating
Chapter XIX: Of The Shrewd Discourse Which Sancho Held With His Master, And Of The Adventure That Befell Him With A Dead Body, Together With Other Notable Occurrences
Chapter XX: Of The Unexampled And Unheard-Of Adventure Which Was Achieved By The Valiant Don Quixote Of La Mancha With Less Peril Than Any Ever Achieved By Any Famous Knight In The World
Chapter XXI: Which Treats Of The Exalted Adventure And Rich Prize Of Mambrino's Helmet, Together With Other Things That Happened To Our Invincible Knight
Chapter XXII: Of The Freedom Don Quixote Conferred On Several Unfortunates Who Against Their Will Were Being Carried Where They Had No Wish To Go
Chapter XXIII: Of What Befell Don Quixote In The Sierra Morena, Which Was One Of The Rarest Adventures Related In This Veracious History
Chapter XXIV: In Which Is Continued The Adventure Of The Sierra Morena
Chapter XXV: Which Treats Of The Strange Things That Happened To The Stout Knight Of La Mancha In The Sierra Morena, And Of His Imitation Of The Penance Of Beltenebros

There are a bunch (126) of chapters, I'm going to do only about 1 at a time, because I'm adding quite a bit of pipelink commentary. At this rate, I should finish around September or October. - Swap
Is Don Quixote a Hero?

After reading The Man of La Mancha, I am convinced that Don Quixote de la Mancha is a hero not only in his mind, but by rational definition as well. What is the textbook definition of a hero? Someone who selflessly faces danger for the sake of others. Quixote was in danger many times in his adventures, even if the danger was amplified in his mind. Riding a charging horse at a windmill is going to be dangerous regardless of the fact that you think the windmill is a giant. The motives for his heroism are not as important as the deeds themselves.

However, the reason I think that Don Quixote is a hero has nothing to do with the textbook definition, however. Don Quixote is the name of a man who refused to be unhappy. The average life just got too boring for him, but instead of suffering, he did what most people then and now are not brave enough to do. He reinvented his life to make it something that he was happy living, no matter how crazy it seemed to other people. He had always wanted to be a knight so one day he decided to be a knight. He possessed the courage to follow his dreams, regardless of the judgment of others. Everyone should be able to respect that, and in my mind it makes him a hero.

The message behind the story of Don Quixote is as relevant now as it was the day the work was written. If I’ve learned one thing from history, it is that most true heroes are misunderstood in their own time. Don Quixote, though a fictional character, was set in a society that had the same condescending attitudes towards nonconformists that our society has today. We’re taught since childhood that we should not judge other people, and that is true. One man’s genius is another man’s insanity, just as one man’s giant is another man’s windmill. Don Quixote is a hero for following his dreams as well as deeds done, imaginary though they may be. As with all heroes, we can all learn something from him.

node your homework!
Mr. Hakim Mansour
English 12
Buena High School

"Don! Don! Don! Don-kee! Don-kee! Don-kee! Hoh-Tay!"

After fifteen minutes, that song will force you to leave no matter how incredible the bargains are inside.

Don Quixote is an infamous chain of giant discount stores in Japan. There are more than 50 shops in Japan, spread over Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Kansai, but most of them are concentrated in the Kanto area around Tokyo, where the company keeps its head offices. They are symbolic of the changing habits of Japanese consumers. Discount shops were traditionally an embarrasing place to be seen, but a new wave of 100-yen shops that sold usable merchandise for unthinkable prices has swept over Japan during the last few years of this recession, and Don Quixote is at the front of the pack. Anything you could possibly want, and probably a lot of things that you want but are too embarrassed to buy, are hidden in the maze called Don Quixote. And they are literally mazes.

The goal behind the layout of a Don Quixote store seems to be to trap anything and everything that enters. The things you want are inevitably in the deepest reaches of the store, and there is no way to get to it without brushing shoulders with a few people, knocking down some items off a display, and losing complete track of where you are and where you have been. The range of products they carry is so diverse though, that you spend all your time giggling to your friends about that adult-sized sailor fuku on sale for 3000 yen, or the brand of cola that you've never ever seen in your entire life, but seems a steal at 70 yen a can. Time passes differently in this part of space. But the Don Quixote song that plays continually, throughout the store will eventually knock sense back into you, and lead you out of the store.

Don Quixote stores can be found by looking for bright lights, the red and yellow "Don Quixote" logo, and their mascot, "Donpen-kun", who is a... that's right, you guessed it: a penguin. Wearing a santa hat, no less. If you've ever heard a Japanese saying they were at "Donkey", this is what they meant.

Either that or they were eating hamburger at Bikkuri Donkey.
Another "node your homework".. from my college Humanities course, where we were required to write a paper, the only subject requirement being that it have something to do with one of the works we covered during the semester. Being a nursing student, this ensued...

In his novel Don Quixote, Cervantes describes the adventures and misadventures of his fictional hero, Don Quixote de la Mancha. Don Quixote is a gentleman in his late middle age who has read so many bad chivalry novels that he has become convinced that he is a knight errant. He polishes up a rusty suit of armor, mounts his scraggly horse, and sets forth to do great deeds. He sees a dirty inn as a great castle, and believes that peasant girls are beautiful princesses. Don Quixote fits the criteria for delusional disorder set forth in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition published by the American Psychiatric Association(DSM-IV).

Delusional disorder is characterized by nonbizarre delusions; i.e. the delusions involve potential real life situations. Visual, auditory, tactile and olfactory hallucinations may be present, but visual and auditory hallucinations may not be prominent. The hallucinations are related only to the delusional theme. Aside from the delusion, functioning is not obviously impaired. Types of delusional disorders include erotomanic (person believes that another is madly in love with them), grandiose (person believes they have superior power, knowledge, a special relationship with a deity or famous person, or that they themselves are a famous person), jealous (delusion of infidelity), persecutory (person believes that they are being persecuted), somatic (person believes they have physical defect or illness), or mixed (characteristics of more than one type).

Don Quixote’s delusions are nonbizarre. He himself is not a knight errant, which makes it a delusion. This does not mean, however, that being a knight errant is not a potential real life situation. He does have hallucinations. These are all connected with his delusion. In chapter 2, he sees an inn as a castle with drawbridge and moat, and the two whores standing at the entrance as ladies or princesses. He hears the reed pipe of a pig-gelder and is convinced that he is being regaled at a big feast, and that the burnt and moldy food he is eating is of the finest quality. In chapter 8, he believes that the windmills he sees are giants he must vanquish. In chapter 9, he sees two friars as magicians carrying off a captive princess. In chapter 23, he believes that he sees an entire underground world in the Cave of Montesinos. There are many more examples of his hallucinations than listed here. However, the hallucinations are only a small part of his disorder. Most of the time, he sees what is before him, but twists it to fit his theme. Aside from things that relate to his delusion of knight-errancy, he acts reasonably normally.

Don Quixote’s type of delusional disorder is grandiose. He believes himself to be an important member of the chivalry, a knight-errant on the order of Lancelot. Not until his death draws near does he realize what is reality and what is fantasy. He actually almost begins to draw his “squire”, Sancho Pansa, into the fantasy. If this had truly happened, this novel would have been an example of a “folie a deux”, where an originally nondelusional person is drawn into another’s delusion and begins to believe and act upon it. Although Don Quixote is a fictional character, he fits the DSM-IV criteria for a diagnosis of delusional disorder very well.

Why Don Quixote Does The Things He Does

Emotions play a crucial role in the development, thoughts, and actions of an individual. They are behind the controls of judgment, attitude, and even love. In "Don Quixote", Cervantes uses the valiant knight Don Quixote to demonstrate the power emotions have over the dynamics of a human being.

Don Quixote's short temper, and sudden outbursts of anger lead him into some hazardous situations, causing much harm to his self, as well as his comrade, Sancho Panza. His quick tounge causes him to lash out at Cardinio in the middle of his story, resulting in the acquaintance with a very large stone:" 'That is not true, I swear,' answered Don Quixote in great rage. 'it is the height of calumny, or rather villainy, to say so. Queen Madasima was a very noble lady, and it is not to be presumed that so high a princess would grant her favors to a quack, and whoever states the contrary lies like a rouge, and I will make him understand it on foot, on horseback, armed or unarmed, by night or by day, as he likes best' "(Cervantes, 236). His incapacity to restrain his emotions of anger result, time and time again, in ill happenings upon Don Quixote's part. It seems he lacks a temper all together, hampering his use of it. Again, Don Quixote's quick anger leads him into the fight with the Biscayan:" 'Now quoth Agrages, you will see,' shouted Don Quixote. Flinging his lance to the ground, he drew his sword, clasped his buckler and rushed at the Biscayan with the firm determination of taking his life"(Cervantes, 104). There is no entity stopping the rampage of emotions currently storming around in his mind. When he is in the pursuit to kill, he will stop at nothing to satisfy his anger. This knight of the rueful figure's temper is out of control, causing the pain and suffering to all those in the vicinity.

The love Don Quixote has overflows, being his love for Dulcinea, or that of his books of chivalry. Don Quixote's profane actions in the mountains are for the sole purpose of paying penance to his lady Dulcinea:"....and was so grieved that he went mad, rooted up trees, troubled the waters of the clean springs, killed shepherds, destroyed flocks, dragged off mares, and committed a hundred thousand other deeds worthy of eternal renown"(Cervantes, 242). Don Quixote does these things no for the love of Dulcinea, but for the love of his books. He pays penance to the his good lady because he is supposed to, according to the books of chivalry. Because the gallant knights in the literary works had a love so fair and pure, Don Quixote feels he must also do so. There is no question as to the fondness Don Quixote had for Dulcinea, but it was doubtfully real, true, genuine love. His actions are a clear reflection of the books he reads:"For his imagination at all hours of the day and knight were full of battles, enchantments, adventures, follies, loves, and challenges as are related in the books of chivalry, and all his words, thoughts and actions were tuned to such things"(Cervantes, 170). From dawn till dusk Don Quixote's mind is filled with that of the actions of other knights, swaying him into the same direction. All his actions are simple emulations of other knights mentioned in his collection of stories. Don Quixote's love, real or not, drives him to do all the wild things he does.

Pride, cockiness, and arrogance are among the worst of Don Quixote's traits. These properties of the brave and willful knight get him into his first(and not last) spout at the inn:"Just at that moment, one of the carriers of the inn took it into his head to water his team of mules.... he gave the carrier such a hefty blow on the plate, that he felled him to the ground...."(Cervantes, 71). This pride and arrogance of Don Quixote continuously throws him into the lions den, leaving no way out. His quick attack on a "lowlife" civilian brings showers of debre down on him. His big head is of no help to the predicaments he has already placed him in:" 'I am equal to a hundred,' replied Don Quixote, and without another word, he clapped hand on his sword, and flew himself at the Yanguesans"(Cervantes, 147). This outlook on himself is the sole cause for his running off into battles. His big ego lets him bite-off-more-than-he-can-chew, landing him into the focal point of he turmoil. Don Quixote's pride is the trait most hazardous to his health and well being.

With three emotions pulling, pushing, twisting, and turning Don Quixote, his actions reflect that of his feelings. He acts on a whim, strikes at the drop of a hat, and lashes out when he so desires. These driving forces guide Don Quixote through his brave sallies, right back to his home, where the whole of the events were sparked.

One thing which cannot, I think, be expressed frequently enough is the immense impact Don Quixote had on modern literature. If we think of literary devices like accessories on a car, then Don Quixote is the pimped-out Caddy of books. I can truly think of no work which approaches it in either innovation, nor actual use of technique. It would be an amazing enough thing if an author today attempted to weave multiple narratives, stories within stories, and epic adventure within one cohesive work, but for Cervantes to have done this without the benefit of a massive number of books having already attempted similar things is nothing short of phenomenal.

I cannot think of any non-poetry work of fiction which has withstood the test of time to the extent of this book. As I was reading it, the only book(s) I have read in recent times which reminded me somewhat of it was Stephen King's Dark Tower series, for Don Quixote actually acknowledges its author, Miguel de Cervantes is a person in the real world. It's self-awareness in that sense is therefore similar to King being a character in that series of books.

Like so many writings of old, there are concepts which are outmoded and would be offensive to most modern readers as well as to Muslims. There are numerous patronizing statements regarding women, Sancho Panza dreams of selling Ethiopians into slavery. There is the customary medieval Christian habit of insulting Islam. I speak of these only to ready the prospective reader. None of these issues, however, can detract from the extraordinary quality and readibility of this masterful work. It taps into every emotion over the course of its many pages. It has some truly funny moments, and I cannot help but suspect that the impact, if it were read in its original tongue rather than through a translation, would be even more intense.

Cervantes refers to this book as a "true history" throughout it. He refers, somewhat mockingly, to Don Quixote as an invincible knight when he introduces the chapters. As indicated above, he gives a brief description of the contents of the chapter when it begins. So, we have the example of "Chapter XX: Of The Unexampled And Unheard-Of Adventure Which Was Achieved By The Valiant Don Quixote Of La Mancha With Less Peril Than Any Ever Achieved By Any Famous Knight In The World." In this, we have the sarcasm. When Quixote's friends discover his madness, they look to burn his books, but save a few good ones, and one in particular by Miguel De Cervantes is saved from the fire because the "author is a friend." This is an example of how the book is placed in the world alongside its author.

During the course of the adventures, a book, "The Man Who was Recklessly Curious" is discovered in an Inn by a priest and his companions and is read in its entirety. We discover a seducer of a wife called Lothario within it's pages. This name for a seducer later is brought to even greater fame thanks to Nicholas Rowe's The Fair Penitent. Here we have one example of the story within a story.

We have multiple viewpoints, as there is the omniscient narrator, along with multiple first person narratives being told by characters, in addition to the fiction within the fiction. The book itself, purporting to be a true history, refers to the historians interacting with events as they observe Don Quixote and parts of the history being lost, and descriptions of how portions of that history of Don Quixote are subsequently found. References to the specific historians who chronicle Quixote are included as well. Because of all this complexity, this is a book which should be read both carefully and repeatedly.

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