“The truth may be stretched thin, but it never breaks, and it always surfaces above lies, as oil floats on water": Finely Bound Set of Cervantes' Masterpiece Don Quixote de la Mancha; With illustrations by Tony Johannot
Don Quixote de la Mancha.
Cervantes, Miguel De.$1,500.00
Item Number: 70098
London: Joseph Thomas, 1840.
Finely bound example of Cervantes’ masterpiece. Octavo, 3 volumes bound in full morocco, gilt titles and tooling to the spine, gilt tooling to the front and rear panels, gilt turn-ins, top edge gilt, marbled endpapers. With eight illustrations from design by Tony Johannot. Translated from the Spanish by Charles Jarvis. In fine condition. An exceptional example.
Don Quixote tells the tale of a man so entranced by reading about the chivalrous romantic ideals touted in books that he decides to take up his sword and become a knight-errant himself, with the aims of defending the helpless and warding off the wicked. With his somewhat confused laborer-turned-squire, Sancho Panza, they roam the world together and have adventures that have haunted reader's imaginations for nearly four hundred years. Don Quixote is generally recognized as the first modern novel. Over those years, it has had an incredible influence on thousands of writers, from Dickens to Faulkner, who once said he reread it once a year, "just as some people read the Bible". Vladimir Nabokov is quoted as saying, "Don Quixote is greater today than he was in Cervantes's womb. [He] looms so wonderfully above the skyline of literature, a gaunt giant on a lean nag, that the book lives and will live through [his] sheer vitality... He stands for everything that is gentle, forlorn, pure, unselfish, and gallant. The parody has become a paragon."