Don Quixote is a novel written by Miguel de Cervantes in 16 Century Spain. A major character of Miguel de Cervantes’s novel is Don Quixote. Don Quixote is the novel’s poignant hero. Don Quixote’s main quest in life is to revive knights in a world deprived from chivalric virtues and values. He believes only what he chooses to believe and sees the world very differently from most people. Sincere, dignified, proud, and committed, he wants to save the world. Don Quixote starts out as a ridiculous and lonely character and ends up as an outrageous and lovable old man whose strength and wisdom have failed him. Another major character is Sancho Panza, the peasant. He is greedy, kind, faithful, and cowardly. Nevertheless, Don Quixote takes him as his squire. A representation of the common man, Sancho is a thwart to Don Quixote and virtually every other character in the novel. His laborer’s wisdom and self-sacrificing Christian behavior prove to be the novel’s most perceptive and honorable concept of life. He has an overwhelmed love for Don Quixote but grows self-confident and impertinent, ending the novel by advising his master in matters of deep personal philosophy. An example of a minor character in the novel is Rocinante, Don Quixote’s barn horse. Rocinante is slow and is as worn out as Don Quixote. A second minor character is Dapple, Sancho’s donkey. Dapple’s continuous disappearances are some of the focus points of much argument in the story. At the start of the book, we meet a man named Alonso Quixano. Alonso is aging and has enough money to keep him from ever having to work or clean his own house. So, he spends most of his free time reading books, and there are no books that interest him more than books about medieval knights riding around on horses, and slaying dragons, and kissing the hands of fair maidens. It turns out that Alonso likes his books a little too much, because one day, he decides to dress up in an old suit of armor and become a knight himself. He takes the name of Don Quixote and starts riding up and down the countryside looking for adventures. The only problem is that giants and dragons don’t really exist. But fear not, because Don Quixote has such an active imagination that he believes everyday objects are giant monsters. Early in his journeys, Don Quixote gets himself a sidekick named Sancho Panza. Sancho doesn’t believe all the crazy stuff Don Quixote is saying, but he knows that he has a good bit of wealth and hopes to make some money by hanging out with him. Once Don Quixote and Sancho set off together for adventures, there are too many plotlines to talk about in this summary. There are some friends of Don Quixote who want to cure his madness, and they devise all sorts of schemes to get him home to his bed. But they often underestimate the power of Don Quixote’s imagination. At the end of the novel, Don Quixote gets a terrible fever and dies in his bed. A major theme in the novel is madness. Most characters in Don Quixote would say Don Quixote represents this theme, since he has all the characteristics of a madman—namely, a senseless set of views that lead him to seem as a hazard to himself and others. Alternatively, the values of gallantry are not the worst values in the world, if you take away the violence. Things like loyalty, modesty, and honor are things the world has had little of. Another major theme in Don Quixote, by Miguel Cervantes is society and class. In 17th-century Spain, your social class told people everything they needed to know about you. All that mattered was whether you came from a noble family, which usually also meant that you were rich. On more than one occasion in Don Quixote, lovers are kept apart because of their social class, and it’s hard to tell just how far Cervantes is prepared to go in panning this detail. Although, he seems to suggest that the quality of a person’s character is what matters. But at other times, he suggests that intermarriage between different classes is only fine if it doesn’t become widespread.