Representative Works from Renaissance Literature

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Don Quixote?

The two parts of Miguel de Cervantes's The History of that ingenious gentleman: Don Quixote de La Mancha, commonly referred to as simply Don Quixote, were published in 1605 and 1615, respectively. Both parts are generally included together in one publication. The story details the misadventures of an old man who has gone mad from reading too many chivalric romances, a form of medieval literature that was popular in Spain during Cervantes's lifetime. True to the form of chivalry, the old man idealizes everything he sees, to much humorous effect. At the end of the novel, Quixote comes to his senses and denounces chivalric ideals before he dies. The novel painted an accurate picture of life in early seventeenth-century Spain and struck a resonant chord with Cervantes's public. Although Cervantes himself thought the work nothing more than a parody, modern critics have noted the book's Renaissance view of...

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This section contains 1,042 words
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Literary Movements for Students
Renaissance Literature from Literary Movements for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.