The Fantasies of Don Quixote

Don Quixote lived in a fantasy world of chivalry. Chivalry had negative and positive effects on the lives of the people. Don Quixote emphasizes a cross-section of Spanish life, thought, and feeling at the end of chivalry. Don Quixote has been called the best novel in the world, and it cannot be compared to any other novel. Don Quixote has been described as “that genial and just judge of imposture, folly, vanity, affectation, and insincerity; that tragic picture of the brave man born out of his time, too proud and too just to be of use in his age” (Putnam, 15).

The novel has been translated by different people, but it has been said that Shelton’s translation has a charm that no modern translation has because he belonged to the same generation as Cervantes the author of Don Quixote. He could see things as Cervantes saw them. Cervantes’ life had influence on Don Quixote. He could look back on his ancestry of genuine knights-errant. He had a strong feeling on the subject of the sham or false chivalry of the romances. Cervantes says, “any point of view affords only partial insights, even a man’s judgment of his own John Ormsby, in his translation, states that to speak of Don Quixote as it were just a humorous book would be a misdeception.

Cervantes at times makes it a kind of commonplace book for observations and reflections and gathered wisdom of a long and stirring life. According to Ormsby, it is a mine of shrewd observations 2 on mankind and human nature. “Perhaps,” Cervantes said, “more people would be better people if they were able to recognize the knights within them” (Church, 6). It has been said that the humor of Don Quixote is what distinguishes it from All other books of romance. This is what makes it “the best novel in the world.” It is Don Quixote was a Spanish knight about fifty years old. His real name was Alonso Quijano.

He lived in the village of La Mancha with his neice, his house- keeper, and a handy man. He gave up hunting and taking care of his estate to satisfy his passion of reading books of chivalry. He had a large collection of romances of chivalry and in the end they turned his brain. His mind became weak from his reading his many romances of chivalry (Samuel, 57). His mind became stuffed with fantasy accounts of tournaments, knightly quests, damsels or women in distress, and strange enchantments (Grossvogel, 89). His high spirit and his courage never failed him, but his illusions led him into trouble. Warddropper says, “Don Quixote’s madness is not the result of unrequited passion.

It is the result of reading too many books of chivalry. He is a knight gone mad from a platonic love” (Warddropper, One day he decided to imitate the heroes of the books he had read and to revive the ancient custom of knight-erranty. Don believed that he had been called to become a knight-errant (Putnam, 63). Nothing would satisfy him but that he must ride abroad on his old horse, armed with spear and helmet, a knight-errant, to encounter all adventures, and to redress the innumeral wrongs of the world. The 3 people laughed at Don Quixote and his insane ideals of knighthood. Don made preparation to put his plan into effect. “So many things were wrong that were to be righted, the grievances to be redressed, the abuses to be done away with, and the duties to be performed” (Church, 64).

He changed his name to Don Quixote de la Mancha and decided to roam the world righting wrongs (Church, He was determined to dress himself in rusty armor, a cardboard helmet and become a knight-errant (Putnam, 70). Knights were chivalrous and brave. No man could be a knight unless it was bestowed upon him. Knights were true and loyal to their countries, their ladies and to themselves. The morals of a knight were to be respected and noted. Knights were protectors and held in high acclaim.

Knights no longer existed, however, the adoration of knighthood was not unlikely. Don’s fascination and obsession with knighthood is not without merit. Don Quixote’s view of knighthood, realistic or not, of knighthood was based upon such reasoning. He rode a bony horse named Rosinante. He persuaded a neighbor of his, a poor and ignorant peasant called Sancho Panza to be his squire ( Jarvis, 82). He believed in Don’s fantasies. “Sancho is a symbol of the common man of the Renaissance who is discovering himself and his rights and has begun to assert himself but still continues to look to the nobility for protection” (Church, 15).

Sancho is not as intelligent as Don Quixote. Church states, “Through his suffering as a tortoise and in the pit, Sancho has learned his rightful identity, whereas Don Quixote has emerged from his cave even more deeply entangled in his fantasies of 4 Without informing any one of his intentions, Don rode out of town. He saw how easily he had made a beginning toward the fulfillment of his desire (Church, 64). Don saw in the mirror what the wanted to see based on the romances he loved. He mistook inns for enchanted castles, windmills for giants, and prostitutes for respectable women. Because of his fantasies, Don was ridiculed and beaten.

People laughed at him. He got into trouble when he showed a group of men he had met the picture of his fair lady Dulcinea of Toboso. They called Dulcinea ugly. Don became so angry that he fell from his horse. He could not get up because of the weight of his armor. What is sad about this is that Dulcinea, his lady love, did not want Don. She believed that he was insane. Sancho also thought that Don was not in control of himself. At times Sancho would try to help Don, but Don would not listen. Sancho stayed with Don because he wanted to govern his own island one day.

You While Don and Sancho were in Barcelona, a man came to Barcelona who was called a Knight of the White Moon, he was really a student they had met. “The white moon is a symbol of winter and death in contrast to a yellow harvest moon; the moon also symbolizes lunacy to which Don Quixote has fallen prey and which will at last defeat him” (Grossvogel, 295). The student was a part of the plan to get Don to go home. The student was claiming to be a knight, and he wanted to fight Don Quixote.

He and Don had already fought once and Don Quixote beat him. He challenged Don to a second duel and claimed victory over Don Quixote. The 5 knight did not want to kill Don Quixote, instead, he made a bargain with Don Quixote (Van Doren, 253). The bargain was that Don Quixote was sentenced to go home. The bargain included that Don would return home for a year without Don went home determined to follow a pastoral shepherd life. He became ill, and his health began to weaken. Before he died, he renounced as nonsense the idea of knight-errantry. Don Quixote died after he had regained his senses. “I was mad, but I am sane now” (Jarvis, 279). He did not realize that he had been a great man of Don Quixote is not a story about an insane man who had crazy, impossible dreams and followed them. He set out to conqueror his dreams, and he fulfilled his

Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below:

Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.

Leave a Comment