This early modern Spanish novel Don Quixote comes in 2 volumes. The first volume was published in the year 1605 while the second one published in the year 1615. It was written by Miguel de Cervantes.
In the early Seventeenth century, in a little village in the region of La Mancha, Spain, an aging wealthy man named “Alonso Quijano” finds himself bored. He very much enjoys stories about knights & fair ladies and adventurers and dangerous encounters but mere books are not enough. And he decides he will actually become an adventuring Knight himself. He gives himself the title of the Don Quixote (“Sir Quixote.”)
Then he searches out an old suit of armor which belonged to his great-grandfather and makes a helmet out of an old metal hat covered in wood. His only horse is as aged and slow as he is. But to him, the animal is a splendid charger and he names it Rocinante. And he chooses a lady to love and fight for from afar. She is a crofter woman named Aldonza from the nearby town of Toboso. Don Quixote actually has only heard of her and never seen her, but he calls her by the noble name of “Dulcinea del Toboso” and is certain she is beautiful & worth fighting for.
Original Title: El Ingenioso Hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha
All that remains is for someone to officially dub him a knight. On the evening of the first day, Don Quixote rides past an ordinary inn. To him, it is a castle with fine ladies and magnificent feasts. But in next morning, when the innkeeper expects him to pay for his room and his food and his horse’s care, Don Quixote is incensed. In the many stories he has read, knights never pay for anything. He shortly begins fighting and trading insults with everyone who passes by. To get him to leave, the innkeeper makes the great show of blessing “Don Quixote” as the knight and encouraging him to just ride away. which he does – without paying.
Afterward, Don Quixote stops a man beating his servant boy. But the moment Don Quixote leaves, this man was even angrier than before and takes it out on the servant boy. The noble efforts have only made matters worse. When Don Quixote believes that a caravan of merchants has insulted Dulcinea, he tries to fight them. But poor Russian Dante falls down under the strain & Don Quixote is unable to get up again in his clumsy armor. The suppliers beat him & leave him injured, but he accepts the pain as part of being a chivalrous hero.
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This incident proves to Don Quixote that a knight needs a squire to assistant him. He chooses Sancho Panza, a short heavy peasant man. Sancho rides his beloved donkey, Dapple, and both of them are sturdy, honest, and hard-working. The man goes along for the journey primarily because Don Quixote is wealthy & Sancho is glad for the work. Sancho is simple and practical where Don Quixote is complex & fanciful. Sancho even tells to master the Aldonza is not really beautiful at all, but simply a very ordinary, thick, strong peasant girl.
Yet Don Quixote only thinks of her as his lovely and delicate princess, Dulcinea. The 2 of them set out together. One of their first adventures involves Don Quixote trying to attack the field of the windmills, thinking they’re enchanted giants. He is injured again but unfazed, and they endure on their way. As they travel the countryside, Sancho eventually gets caught up in Don Quixote’s fantasy. And hopes he really will reward his realistic Squire with his own governorship at mid-island, as promised.
In the course of story, Don Quixote & Sancho have many fanciful and sometimes dangerous adventures. It becomes evident that “Don Quixote” is driven entirely by fantasy since he claims that he does everything for Dulcinea. Although she is never seen in the story and doesn’t really exist. There’re some who tried to treat the obsession & devise schemes of Don Quixote to get him home, but the stories have a very strong hold over him. In modern terms, it’s as still he was habituated to the fantasy and cannot break free of it.
Lastly, Don Quixote battles the man who calls himself the “knight of the White Moon”. The knight goads Don Quixote to fight by saying that it’s too much beautiful than Dulcinea. But if the knight wins, Don Quixote will have to return back home and stop adventuring for at least the year. Don Quixote agree to take the challenge, of course, but is easily beaten by knight & has no choice now but to retain his word and go back home. His days of adventuring and being a chivalrous hero have come to an end.
Don Quixote, feeling increasingly weak and tired after the long adventures, finally returns back to home with Sancho. Don Quixote is ready to give-up on the danger and strain of being a knight and speaks of becoming a shepherd instead. But his family believes that this sort of life would be just as much of a hardship at his age, and they wished him to stay home instead. To their surprise, he agrees and takes to his bed. Soon he’s very ill with what something is a broken heart from the defeats he suffered while adventuring.
Don Quixote then states that he regrets the fantasy life he has led and it was all waste of the time. He asks Sancho to pardon him for leading him on such a pointless escapade, and then he is dead. Yet after his death, several villages compete to be known as Don Quixote hometown. And seemed rather proud to have been associated with perhaps the greatest fantasy adventure of all time.
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