Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes


Don Quixote, written by Miguel de Cervantes in the 17th century, is considered one of the greatest works of fiction in world literature. This novel, originally written in Spanish, has been translated into almost every language, and has captivated readers for centuries. The story follows the adventures of a middle-aged man, Alonso Quixano, who, after reading too many chivalric romances, becomes convinced that he is a knight-errant and sets out on a quest to restore chivalry and honor to the world. In this blog post, we will delve deeper into the themes and characters of Don Quixote and examine what makes it such an enduring classic.

Don Quixote

Buy the Book on Amazon


The novel is divided into two parts, with the first part published in 1605 and the second in 1615. The story begins with Alonso Quixano, a middle-aged gentleman, becoming so obsessed with tales of chivalry that he decides to become a knight himself. He takes on the name Don Quixote and sets out on a series of adventures with his loyal squire, Sancho Panza.

Throughout the novel, Don Quixote encounters a wide range of characters, both real and imaginary, and his misadventures are often humorous and satirical. The novel is not just a story of a delusional knight-errant, but also a commentary on the society and culture of Spain during the 17th century. Cervantes uses Don Quixote as a vehicle to critique the romanticized ideals of chivalry and honor, and to expose the hypocrisies and follies of Spanish society.

Despite the humorous tone of the novel, there are moments of deep pathos and tragedy, particularly in the second part. Don Quixote is eventually disillusioned and comes to realize the futility of his quest, but even in his despair, he remains a noble and honorable figure.


One of the most striking aspects of Don Quixote is its innovative narrative structure. Cervantes breaks with the conventions of traditional romances and creates a metafictional work that comments on the nature of fiction and storytelling itself. The novel is filled with self-referential jokes and allusions to other literary works, and Cervantes uses a variety of narrative techniques, including embedded narratives and multiple narrators, to create a complex and layered text.

Another key theme of the novel is the nature of reality and illusion. Don Quixote’s delusions are often contrasted with the “reality” of the world around him, but the novel blurs the lines between these two states. The characters in the novel are constantly questioning their own perceptions and the reliability of their senses, and Cervantes suggests that reality is ultimately a subjective and mutable concept.

The characters in Don Quixote are also complex and multi-dimensional. Don Quixote himself is both a comic figure and a tragic hero, and his relationship with Sancho Panza is one of the most enduring and touching aspects of the novel. The other characters in the novel, including the women that Don Quixote idealizes, are also given depth and complexity, and Cervantes portrays them with sympathy and insight.

Introduction to the Author

Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616) was a Spanish writer and poet who is widely regarded as one of the most important figures in Spanish literature. He wrote a number of plays, poems, and novels, but is best known for Don Quixote. Cervantes was born in Alcalá de Henares, Spain, and led a varied and eventful life that included a stint in the Spanish navy, captivity as a prisoner of war, and work as a tax collector. His experiences undoubtedly influenced his writing, and his works often reflect the social and political realities of Spain during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Cervantes was a master of the Spanish language, and his writing style is characterized by its wit, humor, and depth of feeling. He was a pioneer of modern fiction, and Don Quixote is widely regarded as the first modern novel. Cervantes’ influence on world literature has been enormous, and his works have inspired countless writers, from Shakespeare to Borges.

Despite his literary achievements, Cervantes’ life was marked by financial difficulties and personal tragedy. He died in poverty and obscurity in Madrid in 1616, just a few days before William Shakespeare’s death in England. Today, Cervantes is celebrated as one of Spain’s greatest writers, and his legacy continues to inspire readers and writers around the world.


In conclusion, Don Quixote is a masterpiece of world literature that has endured for centuries. Cervantes’ innovative narrative structure, complex characters, and insightful commentary on Spanish society make this novel a rich and rewarding reading experience. As readers, we are invited to laugh at Don Quixote’s delusions, but we are also moved by his courage and nobility. Ultimately, Don Quixote is a powerful meditation on the human condition, and its enduring relevance is a testament to the enduring power of great literature.

Show more +
Share this lesson



Premium Membership Discount Get Premium Membership for only $5.95 per Month

Coupon Code:

Unlock premium membership! This summer only, seize your golden opportunity to enjoy all our premium features for just $5.95/month, down from $8.95! Hurry – this sizzling deal melts away with the summer sun. Secure your discount now and let the learning revolution begin!

Create a Free Account Free Membership

working on laptop.png

Please create a free account on ClassX to enjoy all the benefits we have to offer.