Don Quixote:Chapters 1-4

Don Quixote de la Mancha (Oxford World's Classics) - Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Charles Jarvis, E.C. Riley

Up to page 60 of 1000. I am rolling right along here!  I am finding that taking notes while I read slows me down AND it uses up the words I might have for other reviews. So my overall activity is probably going to slowdown. Thank goodness I reached my goal of 200 last week. Now I can just coast and feel no pressure.


I'm going to try to aim for Sunday and Wednesday updates, so these posts might end up rather long.








Chapter 1


...let it suffice that in relating we do not swerve a jot from the truth.


Penciled in "truth? or facts?"


...he sold many acres of arable land to purchase books of knight-errantry...


I am all for buying books, but if he'd been a bit more patient he could have used the proceeds from farming the land to buy those books.


...lost his wits...

Cervantes repeats this SEVERAL times so we're sure to get the message that Quixote, which isn't his name in actuality, is completely out of his gourd. Also allows me to not take anything seriously, which is the point.


At the end of chapter 1 Don Quixote was living in his own little world but you just couldn't bring yourself to mock him. I wanted to humor him like an old dotty uncle.


Chapter 2

...without making any one privy...or being seen by anybody...issued forth into the fields...


Penciled in "he's not THAT crazy".

Thinking about though, I wonder if it was cleverness on his part or just plain dumb luck. The latter would fit more with the book :-)


By the end of this chapter I was beginning to think that my idea of a crazy old uncle was a bit off and penciled in "he's going to hurt himself with his delusions".


Chapter 3


I liked this chapter. He gets himself dubbed a knight and in the process attacks 2 couriers at the inn he's staying at. At the first attack I penciled in "so much for not being being a danger to anyone".


The Innkeeper was fine with going along with Quixote's oddness as long as it brought him money but he never thought that Quixote would live out his delusions by attacking the couriers. So while Q is a nutcase, he's enabled by those around him.


Chapter 4


He attacks a group of merchants but fails miserably and one of their servants beats him black and blue. He has moved beyond the crazy uncle into a place where he's a menace to himself and others.


Wrap Up


This was fun and funny. Cervantes, and his translator Jarvis, are able to convey the utter ridiculousness of Quixote's actions even when he's doing something that I'd lock him up for. We shall see if this light tone carries through the rest of the book.