Last week libraries and the press were celebrating Shakespeare to mark the 400th anniversary of his death. It was hard to miss: Dartmouth made a film of a class using our First Folio; we mounted an exhibit on Hamlet; the New York Times published an "obituary"; and the Folger Shakespeare Library continued its tour of First Folios across the country. What we did miss, though, was astounding (at least for a bunch of Special Collections librarians). The day before, April 22nd, marked the 400th anniversary of the death of Miguel de Cervantes. Alas, nobody came in last week to marvel over our amazing Don Quixote collection.
So, slightly shamefaced about missing the actual day, we try to make amends with these awesome images from the first illustrated edition of Don Quixote (Madrid, 1674). We don't have a first edition of the first volume from 1605--our earliest printing of the novel is from 1607--but we have just over 1000 books in our "Quixote" collection that spans the novel's publication history. If you do this goofy keyword search (dare we call it Quixotic?) branch:branchwqui in our catalog, you'll see the whole list.
Sure, Shakespeare is still a big deal, but the author of what most consider to be the first modern novel deserves some snaps too!
Quixote PQ6323.A1 1674.