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Don Quixote of La Mancha: читать книгу на английском
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First Part of the Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha
Idle reader: Without my swearing to it, you can believe that I would like this book, the child of my understanding, to be the most beautiful, the most brilliant, and the most discreet that anyone could imagine. But I have not been able to contravene the natural order; in it, like begets like. And so what could my barren and poorly cultivated wits beget but the history of a child who is dry, withered, capricious, and filled with inconstant thoughts never imagined by anyone else, which is just what one would expect of a person begotten in a prison, where every discomfort has its place and every mournful sound makes its home? Tranquility, a peaceful place, the pleasant countryside, serene skies, murmuring fountains, a calm spirit, are a great motivation for the most barren muses to prove themselves fertile and produce offspring that fill the world with wonder and joy. A father may have a child who is ugly and lacking in all the graces, and the love he feels for him puts a blindfold over his eyes so that he does not see his defects but considers them signs of charm and intelligence and recounts them to his friends as if they were clever and witty. But though I seem to be the father, I am the stepfather of Don Quixote, and I do not wish to go along with the common custom and implore you, almost with tears in my eyes, as others do, dearest reader, to forgive or ignore the faults you may find in this my child, for you are neither his kin nor his friend, and you have a soul in your body and a will as free as anyone’s, and you are in your own house, where you are lord, as the sovereign is master of his revenues, and you know the old saying: under cover of my cloak I can kill the king. Which exempts and excuses you from all respect and obligation, and you can say anything you desire about this history without fear that you will be reviled for the bad things or rewarded for the good that you might say about it.
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