Don Quixote

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Don Quixote, El ingenioso hidalgo don Quixote de la Mancha (The Ingenious Nobleman Don Quixote of La Mancha), is Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes's most famous novel, perhaps the most famous work of Spanish literature and a seminal work in modern Western writing. Publication was in two stages, the first part in 1605 and the second in 1615. Due to the success of the first part, in 1614 there appeared a sequel, not by Cervantes, often called El Quijote de Avellaneda after the name of its (otherwise unidentified) author, Alonso Fernández de Avellaneda.

Don Quixote tells the story of a sadly deluded and idealistic nobleman who decides to set out on chivalric quests like the knights-errant of old. The adjective quixotic (romantically or foolishly idealistic), and the phrase 'tilting at windmills' (attempting something too great out of idealism, delusion or foolhardiness) come to us from this book.

Quixote is the traditional spelling, but in modern Spanish it is rendered Quijote.