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Thursday, May 16, 2013

DON QUIXOTE AS A MEDIEVAL ROMANCE

          Don Quixote de la Mancha is a parody of the medieval romance genre: a type of literature that flourished from the 12th to the 14th centuries. Don Quixote was written when this genre was already in decline (15th cent.) but a detailed knowledge of the characteristics of the ‘medieval romance’ is necessary for a profound understanding of the work.

WHAT DOES ‘MEDIEVAL’ MEAN? [A brief history of the middle ages]:-
          The Roman Empire started declining towards the AD 300’s and its crumbling gave rise to the Medieval Ages, or Middle Ages. This period lasted from AD 500 to 1500 and is referred as ‘middle’ because it was the time when the European nations began to form. Since the borders of present day European nations were being set, the middle Ages were a period of great warfare. The initial lack of strong government divided the people into feudal states. Because of the constant warfare between these states, the concept of the knight came into being. A knight is simply a mounted warrior. Young men were taught to wear heavy armor, ride a war-horse, and fight with sword and lance. With the rise of the knight came the rise of chivalry, the knightly code of behavior. The chivalrous knight was supposed to be loyal to his feudal state, virtuous, brave, selfless, and protector of the weak.

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