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the experience of reading in Britain, from 1450 to 1945...

Reading Experience Database UK Historical image of readers
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Listings for Author:  

Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra


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Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra  : Don Quixote

'Since the age of five I have been a great reader [...]. At ten years of age I had read much of Victor Hugo and other romantics. I had read in Polish and in French, history, voyages, novels; I knew "Gil Blas" and "Don Quixote" in abridged editions; I had read in early boyhood Polish poets and some French poets, but I cannot say what I read on the evening [in September 1889] before I began to write myself. I belive it was a novel, and it is quite possible that it was one of Anthony Trollope's novels.It is very likely.My acquatance with him was then very recent. He is one of the English novelists whose works I read for the first time in English. With men of European reputation, with Dickens and Walter Scott and Thackeray, it was otherwise. My first introduction to English imaginative literature was "Nicholas Nickleby". It was extraordinary how well Mrs. Nickleby could chatter disconnectedly in Polish [...] It was, I have no doubt an excellent translation. This must have been in the year 1870.'

Century: 1850-1899     Reader/Listener/Group: Joseph Conrad      Print: Book


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