Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Oh Yeah, Cervantes

Windmills image from 1674 edition of Don QuixoteLast 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.

Don Quixote battling the birds, 1674 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. You used to be able to do this goofy keyword search (dare we call it Quixotic?) branch:branchwqui in our old catalog, to see the whole list, but now you'll want to just search the catalog.

Sure, Shakespeare is still a big deal, but the author of what most consider to be the first modern novel deserves some snaps too!

Frontispiece to 1674 editon of Don Quixote
To see the first illustrated edition, ask for Quixote PQ6323.A1 1674.

1 comment :

  1. And another "Oh Yeah," an acknowledgement of the donor that created our marvelous Quixote Collection: Norman Frederic Page, class of 1927, who gave the collection in 1963. He deserves "snaps" as well!