Don Quixote

Produced by David Widger

DON QUIXOTE

Complete

by Miguel de Cervantes [Saavedra]

Translated by John Ormsby

CONTENTS

Volume I.
CHAPTER I
WHICH TREATS OF THE CHARACTER AND PURSUITS OF THE FAMOUS GENTLEMAN
DON QUIXOTE OF LA MANCHA
CHAPTER II
WHICH TREATS OF THE FIRST SALLY THE INGENIOUS DON QUIXOTE MADE
FROM HOME
CHAPTER III
WHEREIN IS RELATED THE DROLL WAY IN WHICH DON QUIXOTE HAD HIMSELF
DUBBED A KNIGHT
CHAPTER IV
OF WHAT HAPPENED TO OUR KNIGHT WHEN HE LEFT THE INN
CHAPTER V
IN WHICH THE NARRATIVE OF OUR KNIGHT’S MISHAP IS CONTINUED
CHAPTER VI
OF THE DIVERTING AND IMPORTANT SCRUTINY WHICH THE CURATE AND THE
BARBER MADE IN THE LIBRARY OF OUR INGENIOUS GENTLEMAN
CHAPTER VII
OF THE SECOND SALLY OF OUR WORTHY KNIGHT DON QUIXOTE OF LA MANCHA
CHAPTER VIII
OF THE GOOD FORTUNE WHICH THE VALIANT DON QUIXOTE HAD IN THE
TERRIBLE AND UNDREAMT-OF ADVENTURE OF THE WINDMILLS, WITH OTHER
OCCURRENCES WORTHY TO BE FITLY RECORDED
CHAPTER IX
IN WHICH IS CONCLUDED AND FINISHED THE TERRIFIC BATTLE BETWEEN THE
GALLANT BISCAYAN AND THE VALIANT MANCHEGAN
CHAPTER X
OF THE PLEASANT DISCOURSE THAT PASSED BETWEEN DON QUIXOTE AND HIS
SQUIRE SANCHO PANZA
CHAPTER XI
OF WHAT BEFELL DON QUIXOTE WITH CERTAIN GOATHERDS
CHAPTER XII
OF WHAT A GOATHERD RELATED TO THOSE WITH DON QUIXOTE
CHAPTER XIII
IN WHICH IS ENDED THE STORY OF THE SHEPHERDESS MARCELA, WITH OTHER
INCIDENTS
CHAPTER XIV
WHEREIN ARE INSERTED THE DESPAIRING VERSES OF THE DEAD SHEPHERD,
TOGETHER WITH OTHER INCIDENTS NOT LOOKED FOR
CHAPTER XV
IN WHICH IS RELATED THE UNFORTUNATE ADVENTURE THAT DON QUIXOTE
FELL IN WITH WHEN HE FELL OUT WITH CERTAIN HEARTLESS YANGUESANS
CHAPTER XVI
OF WHAT HAPPENED TO THE INGENIOUS GENTLEMAN IN THE INN WHICH HE
TOOK TO BE A CASTLE
CHAPTER XVII
IN WHICH ARE CONTAINED THE INNUMERABLE TROUBLES WHICH THE BRAVE
DON QUIXOTE AND HIS GOOD SQUIRE SANCHO PANZA ENDURED IN THE INN,
WHICH TO HIS MISFORTUNE HE TOOK TO BE A CASTLE
CHAPTER XVIII
IN WHICH IS RELATED THE DISCOURSE SANCHO PANZA HELD WITH HIS MASTER,
DON QUIXOTE, AND OTHER ADVENTURES WORTH RELATING
CHAPTER XIX
OF THE SHREWD DISCOURSE WHICH SANCHO HELD WITH HIS MASTER, AND OF
THE ADVENTURE THAT BEFELL HIM WITH A DEAD BODY, TOGETHER WITH OTHER
NOTABLE OCCURRENCES
CHAPTER XX
OF THE UNEXAMPLED AND UNHEARD-OF ADVENTURE WHICH WAS ACHIEVED BY THE
VALIANT DON QUIXOTE OF LA MANCHA WITH LESS PERIL THAN ANY EVER
ACHIEVED BY ANY FAMOUS KNIGHT IN THE WORLD
CHAPTER XXI
WHICH TREATS OF THE EXALTED ADVENTURE AND RICH PRIZE OF MAMBRINO’S
HELMET, TOGETHER WITH OTHER THINGS THAT HAPPENED TO OUR INVINCIBLE
KNIGHT
CHAPTER XXII
OF THE FREEDOM DON QUIXOTE CONFERRED ON SEVERAL UNFORTUNATES WHO
AGAINST THEIR WILL WERE BEING CARRIED WHERE THEY HAD NO WISH TO GO
CHAPTER XXIII
OF WHAT BEFELL DON QUIXOTE IN THE SIERRA MORENA, WHICH WAS ONE OF
THE RAREST ADVENTURES RELATED IN THIS VERACIOUS HISTORY
CHAPTER XXIV
IN WHICH IS CONTINUED THE ADVENTURE OF THE SIERRA MORENA
CHAPTER XXV
WHICH TREATS OF THE STRANGE THINGS THAT HAPPENED TO THE STOUT
KNIGHT OF LA MANCHA IN THE SIERRA MORENA, AND OF HIS IMITATION
OF THE PENANCE OF BELTENEBROS
CHAPTER XXVI
IN WHICH ARE CONTINUED THE REFINEMENTS WHEREWITH DON QUIXOTE
PLAYED THE PART OF A LOVER IN THE SIERRA MORENA
CHAPTER XXVII
OF HOW THE CURATE AND THE BARBER PROCEEDED WITH THEIR SCHEME;
TOGETHER WITH OTHER MATTERS WORTHY OF RECORD IN THIS GREAT HISTORY
CHAPTER XXVIII
WHICH TREATS OF THE STRANGE AND DELIGHTFUL ADVENTURE THAT BEFELL
THE CURATE AND THE BARBER IN THE SAME SIERRA
CHAPTER XXIX
WHICH TREATS OF THE DROLL DEVICE AND METHOD ADOPTED TO EXTRICATE
OUR LOVE-STRICKEN KNIGHT FROM THE SEVERE PENANCE HE HAD IMPOSED
UPON HIMSELF
CHAPTER XXX
WHICH TREATS OF ADDRESS DISPLAYED BY THE FAIR DOROTHEA, WITH OTHER
MATTERS PLEASANT AND AMUSING
CHAPTER XXXI
OF THE DELECTABLE DISCUSSION BETWEEN DON QUIXOTE AND SANCHO PANZA,
HIS SQUIRE, TOGETHER WITH OTHER INCIDENTS
CHAPTER XXXII
WHICH TREATS OF WHAT BEFELL DON QUIXOTE’S PARTY AT THE INN
CHAPTER XXXIII
IN WHICH IS RELATED THE NOVEL OF “THE ILL-ADVISED CURIOSITY”
CHAPTER XXXIV
IN WHICH IS CONTINUED THE NOVEL OF “THE ILL-ADVISED CURIOSITY”
CHAPTER XXXV
WHICH TREATS OF THE HEROIC AND PRODIGIOUS BATTLE DON QUIXOTE HAD
WITH CERTAIN SKINS OF RED WINE, AND BRINGS THE NOVEL OF “THE
ILL-ADVISED CURIOSITY” TO A CLOSE
CHAPTER XXXVI
WHICH TREATS OF MORE CURIOUS INCIDENTS THAT OCCURRED AT THE INN
CHAPTER XXXVII
IN WHICH IS CONTINUED THE STORY OF THE FAMOUS PRINCESS MICOMICONA,
WITH OTHER DROLL ADVENTURES
CHAPTER XXXVIII
WHICH TREATS OF THE CURIOUS DISCOURSE DON QUIXOTE DELIVERED ON
ARMS AND LETTERS
CHAPTER XXXIX
WHEREIN THE CAPTIVE RELATES HIS LIFE AND ADVENTURES
CHAPTER XL
IN WHICH THE STORY OF THE CAPTIVE IS CONTINUED.
CHAPTER XLI
IN WHICH THE CAPTIVE STILL CONTINUES HIS ADVENTURES
CHAPTER XLII
WHICH TREATS OF WHAT FURTHER TOOK PLACE IN THE INN, AND OF
SEVERAL OTHER THINGS WORTH KNOWING
CHAPTER XLIII
WHEREIN IS RELATED THE PLEASANT STORY OF THE MULETEER, TOGETHER
WITH OTHER STRANGE THINGS THAT CAME TO PASS IN THE INN
CHAPTER XLIV
IN WHICH ARE CONTINUED THE UNHEARD-OF ADVENTURES OF THE INN
CHAPTER XLV
IN WHICH THE DOUBTFUL QUESTION OF MAMBRINO’S HELMET AND THE
PACK-SADDLE IS FINALLY SETTLED, WITH OTHER ADVENTURES THAT
OCCURRED IN TRUTH AND EARNEST
CHAPTER XLVI
OF THE END OF THE NOTABLE ADVENTURE OF THE OFFICERS OF THE HOLY
BROTHERHOOD; AND OF THE GREAT FEROCITY OF OUR WORTHY KNIGHT, DON
QUIXOTE
CHAPTER XLVII
OF THE STRANGE MANNER IN WHICH DON QUIXOTE OF LA MANCHA WAS
CARRIED AWAY ENCHANTED, TOGETHER WITH OTHER REMARKABLE INCIDENTS
CHAPTER XLVIII
IN WHICH THE CANON PURSUES THE SUBJECT OF THE BOOKS OF CHIVALRY,
WITH OTHER MATTERS WORTHY OF HIS WIT
CHAPTER XLIX
WHICH TREATS OF THE SHREWD CONVERSATION WHICH SANCHO PANZA HELD
WITH HIS MASTER DON QUIXOTE
CHAPTER L
OF THE SHREWD CONTROVERSY WHICH DON QUIXOTE AND THE CANON HELD,
TOGETHER WITH OTHER INCIDENTS
CHAPTER LI
WHICH DEALS WITH WHAT THE GOATHERD TOLD THOSE WHO WERE CARRYING
OFF DON QUIXOTE
CHAPTER LII
OF THE QUARREL THAT DON QUIXOTE HAD WITH THE GOATHERD, TOGETHER
WITH THE RARE ADVENTURE OF THE PENITENTS, WHICH WITH AN
EXPENDITURE OF SWEAT HE BROUGHT TO A HAPPY CONCLUSION

TRANSLATOR’S PREFACE

I: ABOUT THIS TRANSLATION

It was with considerable reluctance that I abandoned in favour of the
present undertaking what had long been a favourite project: that of a new
edition of Shelton’s “Don Quixote,” which has now become a somewhat
scarce book. There are some—and I confess myself to be one—for whom
Shelton’s racy old version, with all its defects, has a charm that no
modern translation, however skilful or correct, could possess. Shelton
had the inestimable advantage of belonging to the same generation as
Cervantes; “Don Quixote” had to him a vitality that only a contemporary
could feel; it cost him no dramatic effort to see things as Cervantes saw
them; there is no anachronism in his language; he put the Spanish of
Cervantes into the English of Shakespeare. Shakespeare himself most
likely knew the book; he may have carried it home with him in his
saddle-bags to Stratford on one of his last journeys, and under the
mulberry tree at New Place joined hands with a kindred genius in its
pages.

But it was soon made plain to me that to hope for even a moderate
popularity for Shelton was vain. His fine old crusted English would, no
doubt, be relished by a minority, but it would be only by a minority. His
warmest admirers must admit that he is not a satisfactory representative
of Cervantes. His translation of the First Part was very hastily made and
was never revised by him. It has all the freshness and vigour, but also a
full measure of the faults, of a hasty production. It is often very
literal—barbarously literal frequently—but just as often very loose. He
had evidently a good colloquial knowledge of Spanish, but apparently not
much more. It never seems to occur to him that the same translation of a
word will not suit in every case.

It is often said that we have no satisfactory translation of “Don
Quixote.” To those who are familiar with the original, it savours of
truism or platitude to say so, for in truth there can be no thoroughly
satisfactory translation of “Don Quixote” into English or any other
language. It is not that the Spanish idioms are so utterly unmanageable,
or that the untranslatable words, numerous enough no doubt, are so
superabundant, but rather that the sententious terseness to which the
humour of the book owes its flavour is peculiar to Spanish, and can at
best be only distantly imitated in any other tongue.

The history of our English translations of “Don Quixote” is instructive.
Shelton’s, the first in any language, was made, apparently, about 1608,
but not published till 1612. This of course was only the First Part. It
has been asserted that the Second, published in 1620, is not the work of
Shelton, but there is nothing to support the assertion save the fact that
it has less spirit, less of what we generally understand by “go,” about
it than the first, which would be only natural if the first were the work
of a young man writing currente calamo, and the second that of a
middle-aged man writing for a bookseller. On the other hand, it is closer
and more literal, the style is the same, the very same translations, or
mistranslations, occur in it, and it is extremely unlikely that a new
translator would, by suppressing his name, have allowed Shelton to carry
off the credit.

In 1687 John Phillips, Milton’s nephew, produced a “Don Quixote” “made
English,” he says, “according to the humour of our modern language.” His
“Quixote” is not so much a translation as a travesty, and a travesty that
for coarseness, vulgarity, and buffoonery is almost unexampled even in
the literature of that day.

Ned Ward’s “Life and Notable Adventures of Don Quixote, merrily
translated into Hudibrastic Verse” (1700), can scarcely be reckoned a
translation, but it serves to show the light in which “Don Quixote” was
regarded at the time.

A further illustration may be found in the version published in 1712 by
Peter Motteux, who had then recently combined tea-dealing with
literature. It is described as “translated from the original by several
hands,” but if so all Spanish flavour has entirely evaporated under the
manipulation of the several hands. The flavour that it has, on the other
hand, is distinctly Franco-cockney. Anyone who compares it carefully with
the original will have little doubt that it is a concoction from Shelton
and the French of Filleau de Saint Martin, eked out by borrowings from
Phillips, whose mode of treatment it adopts. It is, to be sure, more
decent and decorous, but it treats “Don Quixote” in the same fashion as a
comic book that cannot be made too comic.

To attempt to improve the humour of “Don Quixote” by an infusion of
cockney flippancy and facetiousness, as Motteux’s operators did, is not
merely an impertinence like larding a sirloin of prize beef, but an
absolute falsification of the spirit of the book, and it is a proof of
the uncritical way in which “Don Quixote” is generally read that this
worse than worthless translation—worthless as failing to represent,
worse than worthless as misrepresenting—should have been favoured as it
has been.

It had the effect, however, of bringing out a translation undertaken and
executed in a very different spirit, that of Charles Jervas, the portrait
painter, and friend of Pope, Swift, Arbuthnot, and Gay. Jervas has been
allowed little credit for his work, indeed it may be said none, for it is
known to the world in general as Jarvis’s. It was not published until
after his death, and the printers gave the name according to the current
pronunciation of the day. It has been the most freely used and the most
freely abused of all the translations. It has seen far more editions than
any other, it is admitted on all hands to be by far the most faithful,
and yet nobody seems to have a good word to say for it or for its author.
Jervas no doubt prejudiced readers against himself in his preface, where
among many true words about Shelton, Stevens, and Motteux, he rashly and
unjustly charges Shelton with having translated not from the Spanish, but
from the Italian version of Franciosini, which did not appear until ten
years after Shelton’s first volume. A suspicion of incompetence, too,
seems to have attached to him because he was by profession a painter and
a mediocre one (though he has given us the best portrait we have of
Swift), and this may have been strengthened by Pope’s remark that he
“translated ‘Don Quixote’ without understanding Spanish.” He has been
also charged with borrowing from Shelton, whom he disparaged. It is true
that in a few difficult or obscure passages he has followed Shelton, and
gone astray with him; but for one case of this sort, there are fifty
where he is right and Shelton wrong. As for Pope’s dictum, anyone who
examines Jervas’s version carefully, side by side with the original, will
see that he was a sound Spanish scholar, incomparably a better one than
Shelton, except perhaps in mere colloquial Spanish. He was, in fact, an
honest, faithful, and painstaking translator, and he has left a version
which, whatever its shortcomings may be, is singularly free from errors
and mistranslations.

The charge against it is that it is stiff, dry—”wooden” in a word,-and
no one can deny that there is a foundation for it. But it may be pleaded
for Jervas that a good deal of this rigidity is due to his abhorrence of
the light, flippant, jocose style of his predecessors. He was one of the
few, very few, translators that have shown any apprehension of the
unsmiling gravity which is the essence of Quixotic humour; it seemed to
him a crime to bring Cervantes forward smirking and grinning at his own
good things, and to this may be attributed in a great measure the ascetic
abstinence from everything savouring of liveliness which is the
characteristic of his translation. In most modern editions, it should be
observed, his style has been smoothed and smartened, but without any
reference to the original Spanish, so that if he has been made to read
more agreeably he has also been robbed of his chief merit of fidelity.

Smollett’s version, published in 1755, may be almost counted as one of
these. At any rate it is plain that in its construction Jervas’s
translation was very freely drawn upon, and very little or probably no
heed given to the original Spanish.

The later translations may be dismissed in a few words. George Kelly’s,
which appeared in 1769, “printed for the Translator,” was an impudent
imposture, being nothing more than Motteux’s version with a few of the
words, here and there, artfully transposed; Charles Wilmot’s (1774) was
only an abridgment like Florian’s, but not so skilfully executed; and the
version published by Miss Smirke in 1818, to accompany her brother’s
plates, was merely a patchwork production made out of former
translations. On the latest, Mr. A. J. Duffield’s, it would be in every
sense of the word impertinent in me to offer an opinion here. I had not
even seen it when the present undertaking was proposed to me, and since
then I may say vidi tantum, having for obvious reasons resisted the
temptation which Mr. Duffield’s reputation and comely volumes hold out to
every lover of Cervantes.

From the foregoing history of our translations of “Don Quixote,” it will
be seen that there are a good many people who, provided they get the mere
narrative with its full complement of facts, incidents, and adventures
served up to them in a form that amuses them, care very little whether
that form is the one in which Cervantes originally shaped his ideas. On
the other hand, it is clear that there are many who desire to have not
merely the story he tells, but the story as he tells it, so far at least
as differences of idiom and circumstances permit, and who will give a
preference to the conscientious translator, even though he may have
acquitted himself somewhat awkwardly.

But after all there is no real antagonism between the two classes; there
is no reason why what pleases the one should not please the other, or why
a translator who makes it his aim to treat “Don Quixote” with the respect
due to a great classic, should not be as acceptable even to the careless
reader as the one who treats it as a famous old jest-book. It is not a
question of caviare to the general, or, if it is, the fault rests with
him who makes so. The method by which Cervantes won the ear of the
Spanish people ought, mutatis mutandis, to be equally effective with the
great majority of English readers. At any rate, even if there are readers
to whom it is a matter of indifference, fidelity to the method is as much
a part of the translator’s duty as fidelity to the matter. If he can
please all parties, so much the better; but his first duty is to those
who look to him for as faithful a representation of his author as it is
in his power to give them, faithful to the letter so long as fidelity is
practicable, faithful to the spirit so far as he can make it.

My purpose here is not to dogmatise on the rules of translation, but to
indicate those I have followed, or at least tried to the best of my
ability to follow, in the present instance. One which, it seems to me,
cannot be too rigidly followed in translating “Don Quixote,” is to avoid
everything that savours of affectation. The book itself is, indeed, in
one sense a protest against it, and no man abhorred it more than
Cervantes. For this reason, I think, any temptation to use antiquated or
obsolete language should be resisted. It is after all an affectation, and
one for which there is no warrant or excuse. Spanish has probably
undergone less change since the seventeenth century than any language in
Europe, and by far the greater and certainly the best part of “Don
Quixote” differs but little in language from the colloquial Spanish of
the present day. Except in the tales and Don Quixote’s speeches, the
translator who uses the simplest and plainest everyday language will
almost always be the one who approaches nearest to the original.

Seeing that the story of “Don Quixote” and all its characters and
incidents have now been for more than two centuries and a half familiar
as household words in English mouths, it seems to me that the old
familiar names and phrases should not be changed without good reason. Of
course a translator who holds that “Don Quixote” should receive the
treatment a great classic deserves, will feel himself bound by the
injunction laid upon the Morisco in Chap. IX not to omit or add anything.

II: ABOUT CERVANTES AND DON QUIXOTE

Four generations had laughed over “Don Quixote” before it occurred to
anyone to ask, who and what manner of man was this Miguel de Cervantes
Saavedra whose name is on the title-page; and it was too late for a
satisfactory answer to the question when it was proposed to add a life of
the author to the London edition published at Lord Carteret’s instance in
1738. All traces of the personality of Cervantes had by that time
disappeared. Any floating traditions that may once have existed,
transmitted from men who had known him, had long since died out, and of
other record there was none; for the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
were incurious as to “the men of the time,” a reproach against which the
nineteenth has, at any rate, secured itself, if it has produced no
Shakespeare or Cervantes. All that Mayans y Siscar, to whom the task was
entrusted, or any of those who followed him, Rios, Pellicer, or
Navarrete, could do was to eke out the few allusions Cervantes makes to
himself in his various prefaces with such pieces of documentary evidence
bearing upon his life as they could find.

This, however, has been done by the last-named biographer to such good
purpose that he has superseded all predecessors. Thoroughness is the
chief characteristic of Navarrete’s work. Besides sifting, testing, and
methodising with rare patience and judgment what had been previously
brought to light, he left, as the saying is, no stone unturned under
which anything to illustrate his subject might possibly be found.
Navarrete has done all that industry and acumen could do, and it is no
fault of his if he has not given us what we want. What Hallam says of
Shakespeare may be applied to the almost parallel case of Cervantes: “It
is not the register of his baptism, or the draft of his will, or the
orthography of his name that we seek; no letter of his writing, no record
of his conversation, no character of him drawn … by a contemporary has
been produced.”

It is only natural, therefore, that the biographers of Cervantes, forced
to make brick without straw, should have recourse largely to conjecture,
and that conjecture should in some instances come by degrees to take the
place of established fact. All that I propose to do here is to separate
what is matter of fact from what is matter of conjecture, and leave it to
the reader’s judgment to decide whether the data justify the inference or
not.

The men whose names by common consent stand in the front rank of Spanish
literature, Cervantes, Lope de Vega, Quevedo, Calderon, Garcilaso de la
Vega, the Mendozas, Gongora, were all men of ancient families, and,
curiously, all, except the last, of families that traced their origin to
the same mountain district in the North of Spain. The family of Cervantes
is commonly said to have been of Galician origin, and unquestionably it
was in possession of lands in Galicia at a very early date; but I think
the balance of the evidence tends to show that the “solar,” the original
site of the family, was at Cervatos in the north-west corner of Old
Castile, close to the junction of Castile, Leon, and the Asturias. As it
happens, there is a complete history of the Cervantes family from the
tenth century down to the seventeenth extant under the title of
“Illustrious Ancestry, Glorious Deeds, and Noble Posterity of the Famous
Nuno Alfonso, Alcaide of Toledo,” written in 1648 by the industrious
genealogist Rodrigo Mendez Silva, who availed himself of a manuscript
genealogy by Juan de Mena, the poet laureate and historiographer of John
II.

The origin of the name Cervantes is curious. Nuno Alfonso was almost as
distinguished in the struggle against the Moors in the reign of Alfonso
VII as the Cid had been half a century before in that of Alfonso VI, and
was rewarded by divers grants of land in the neighbourhood of Toledo. On
one of his acquisitions, about two leagues from the city, he built
himself a castle which he called Cervatos, because “he was lord of the
solar of Cervatos in the Montana,” as the mountain region extending from
the Basque Provinces to Leon was always called. At his death in battle in
1143, the castle passed by his will to his son Alfonso Munio, who, as
territorial or local surnames were then coming into vogue in place of the
simple patronymic, took the additional name of Cervatos. His eldest son
Pedro succeeded him in the possession of the castle, and followed his
example in adopting the name, an assumption at which the younger son,
Gonzalo, seems to have taken umbrage.

Everyone who has paid even a flying visit to Toledo will remember the
ruined castle that crowns the hill above the spot where the bridge of
Alcantara spans the gorge of the Tagus, and with its broken outline and
crumbling walls makes such an admirable pendant to the square solid
Alcazar towering over the city roofs on the opposite side. It was built,
or as some say restored, by Alfonso VI shortly after his occupation of
Toledo in 1085, and called by him San Servando after a Spanish martyr, a
name subsequently modified into San Servan (in which form it appears in
the “Poem of the Cid”), San Servantes, and San Cervantes: with regard to
which last the “Handbook for Spain” warns its readers against the
supposition that it has anything to do with the author of “Don Quixote.”
Ford, as all know who have taken him for a companion and counsellor on
the roads of Spain, is seldom wrong in matters of literature or history.
In this instance, however, he is in error. It has everything to do with
the author of “Don Quixote,” for it is in fact these old walls that have
given to Spain the name she is proudest of to-day. Gonzalo, above
mentioned, it may be readily conceived, did not relish the appropriation
by his brother of a name to which he himself had an equal right, for
though nominally taken from the castle, it was in reality derived from
the ancient territorial possession of the family, and as a set-off, and
to distinguish himself (diferenciarse) from his brother, he took as a
surname the name of the castle on the bank of the Tagus, in the building
of which, according to a family tradition, his great-grandfather had a
share.

Both brothers founded families. The Cervantes branch had more tenacity;
it sent offshoots in various directions, Andalusia, Estremadura, Galicia,
and Portugal, and produced a goodly line of men distinguished in the
service of Church and State. Gonzalo himself, and apparently a son of
his, followed Ferdinand III in the great campaign of 1236-48 that gave
Cordova and Seville to Christian Spain and penned up the Moors in the
kingdom of Granada, and his descendants intermarried with some of the
noblest families of the Peninsula and numbered among them soldiers,
magistrates, and Church dignitaries, including at least two
cardinal-archbishops.

Of the line that settled in Andalusia, Deigo de Cervantes, Commander of
the Order of Santiago, married Juana Avellaneda, daughter of Juan Arias
de Saavedra, and had several sons, of whom one was Gonzalo Gomez,
Corregidor of Jerez and ancestor of the Mexican and Columbian branches of
the family; and another, Juan, whose son Rodrigo married Dona Leonor de
Cortinas, and by her had four children, Rodrigo, Andrea, Luisa, and
Miguel, our author.

The pedigree of Cervantes is not without its bearing on “Don Quixote.” A
man who could look back upon an ancestry of genuine knights-errant
extending from well-nigh the time of Pelayo to the siege of Granada was
likely to have a strong feeling on the subject of the sham chivalry of
the romances. It gives a point, too, to what he says in more than one
place about families that have once been great and have tapered away
until they have come to nothing, like a pyramid. It was the case of his
own.

He was born at Alcala de Henares and baptised in the church of Santa

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