The History and Adventures of the Renowned Don Quixote

The History and Adventures of the Renowned Don Quixote

by Miguel Saavedra, Martin Battestin, O Brack Jr., Jerry Beasley, Tobias Smollett
     
 

This authoritative textual edition presents Tobias Smollett's translation of Cervantes's Don Quixote in the form most faithful to Smollett's own intentions. It includes Francis Hayman's twenty-eight illustrations engraved for the original edition, Smollett's explanatory notes, and his prefatory "Life of Cervantes."

Smollett's Don Quixote first appeared in

Overview

This authoritative textual edition presents Tobias Smollett's translation of Cervantes's Don Quixote in the form most faithful to Smollett's own intentions. It includes Francis Hayman's twenty-eight illustrations engraved for the original edition, Smollett's explanatory notes, and his prefatory "Life of Cervantes."

Smollett's Don Quixote first appeared in 1755 and was for many years the most popular English-language version of Cervantes's masterpiece. However, soon after the start of the nineteenth century, its reputation began to suffer. Rival translators, literary hucksters, and careless scholars initiated or fed a variety of charges against Smollett—even plagiarism. For almost 130 years no publisher risked reprinting it.

Redemption began in 1986, when the distinguished Mexican novelist Carlos Fuentes, in his foreword to a new (albeit flawed) edition of Smollett's translation, declared it to be "the authentic vernacular version" of Don Quixote in English. Fuentes's opinion was in accord with that of the preeminent Cervantist, Francisco Rodríguez Marín, who decades earlier had declared Smollett's Don Quixote to be his preferred English version.

Martin C. Battestin's introduction discusses the composition, publication, and controversial reception of Smollett's Don Quixote. Battestin's notes identify Smollett's sources in his "Life of Cervantes" and in his commentary, provide cross-references to his other works, and illustrate Smollett's originality or dependence on previous translations. Also included is a complete textual apparatus, a glossary of unfamiliar terms, and an appendix comparing a selection of Francis Hayman's original illustrations with the engraved renderings used in the book.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The only translation in English that feels as rambunctious as the original feels in Spanish. It opens up the book completely."--Salman Rushdie

"Battestin’s handsome edition for the University of Georgia Press Works of Tobias Smollett, supported by O. M. Brack’s meticulous squiring of the text, restores the book to its proper state, along with its magnificent series of illustrations by Francis Hayman. The Smollett Quixote finally sallies forth as the essential translation for readers of Cervantes who are interested in his profound influence on eighteenth-century British culture, or on the development of the novel as a modern literary genre. . . . Smollett transforms the prose of his template into something mucky, rumbustious and deliciously readable. . . . Smollett’s notes on the faithfulness of Cervantes to ‘the memory of the real substantial chivalry’ also anticipate a later romantic tradition of Quixotism, and confirm that his translation represents the closest engagement of any writer with a book that gave form and spirit to the British comic novel."--Times Literary Suppplement

"Beyond contributing to discussions about the visual dynamics of the eighteenth-century text, this edition of Don Quixote has the potential to influence current conversations about the role translation played in shaping eighteenth-century fiction. . . .The importance of [this] edition to Smollett studies cannot be overstated."--Eighteenth Century Scotland

"The edition produced by Battestin and O M Brack Jr., is an extraordinary achievement, nothing short of inspirational."--Jim May, editor of ECCB

"Somehow lost in the simultaneous and shuffling dust behind Edith Grossman's triumphal chariot is another extraordinary translation of Cervante's masterpiece . . . This edition, a product of superb critical and textual scholarship, goes back to Thursday, 25 February, 1755, to the publication of Don Quixote as translated by the novelist Tobias Smollett, probably, in the good opinion and judgement of people of knowledge and authority, the finest rendering of Don Quixote in the English language. . . . In the absence of Harold Bloom, permit me, if you please, to blow the trumpet for the definitive English version and translation of a magnificent novel."--George Garrett, Hollins Critic

Salman Rushdie

The only translation in English that feels as rambunctious as the original feels in Spanish. It opens up the book completely.

Hollins Critic - George Garrett

Somehow lost in the simultaneous and shuffling dust behind Edith Grossman's triumphal chariot is another extraordinary translation of Cervante's masterpiece . . . This edition, a product of superb critical and textual scholarship, goes back to Thursday, 25 February, 1755, to the publication of Don Quixote as translated by the novelist Tobias Smollett, probably, in the good opinion and judgement of people of knowledge and authority, the finest rendering of Don Quixote in the English language. . . . In the absence of Harold Bloom, permit me, if you please, to blow the trumpet for the definitive English version and translation of a magnificent novel.

Eighteenth Century Scotland

Beyond contributing to discussions about the visual dynamics of the eighteenth-century text, this edition of Don Quixote has the potential to influence current conversations about the role translation played in shaping eighteenth-century fiction. . . .The importance of [this] edition to Smollett studies cannot be overstated.

Times Literary Suppplement

Battestin’s handsome edition for the University of Georgia Press Works of Tobias Smollett, supported by O. M. Brack’s meticulous squiring of the text, restores the book to its proper state, along with its magnificent series of illustrations by Francis Hayman. The Smollett Quixote finally sallies forth as the essential translation for readers of Cervantes who are interested in his profound influence on eighteenth-century British culture, or on the development of the novel as a modern literary genre. . . . Smollett transforms the prose of his template into something mucky, rumbustious and deliciously readable. . . . Smollett’s notes on the faithfulness of Cervantes to ‘the memory of the real substantial chivalry’ also anticipate a later romantic tradition of Quixotism, and confirm that his translation represents the closest engagement of any writer with a book that gave form and spirit to the British comic novel.

editor of ECCB - Jim May

The edition produced by Battestin and O M Brack Jr., is an extraordinary achievement, nothing short of inspirational.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780820346076
Publisher:
University of Georgia Press
Publication date:
01/15/2014
Series:
The Works of Tobias Smollett Series
Pages:
992
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 2.50(d)

Meet the Author

Martin C. Battestin is William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Virginia. Among other publications, he has edited the novels of Henry Fielding for the authoritative Wesleyan Edition, and he is the author of Fielding's biography.

O M Brack, Jr., a professor of English literature emeritus at Arizona State University, is coauthor of Samuel Johnson's Early Biographers and coeditor of The Early Biographies of Samuel Johnson. He has edited volumes of the Works of Samuel Johnson published by Yale and is textual editor for the Georgia series the Works of Tobias Smollett. Brack is the curator of the 2009 Johnson tercentenary exhibition at the Huntington Library.

Jerry C. Beasley is a professor of English at the University of Delaware in Newark. He is the author of Novels of the 1740s and editor of Smollett's The Adventures of Ferdinand Count Fathom. From 1987 to 1997 he served as general editor of the Georgia Edition of the Works of Tobias Smollett.

Novelist, playwright, journalist, historian, travel writer, critic, translator, editor, and compiler, Tobias Smollett (1721-1771) was an eighteenth-century man of letters in the fullest sense of the phrase. Though his writings have been variously gathered together over the last two centuries, no definitive scholarly edition of Smollett's works has been published until the Georgia edition. Though not a complete collection, the Georgia edition includes all of those writings by which Smollett was best known in his own time and by which he is best remembered in ours. Prepared by a distinguished group of scholars, the edition conforms to the highest standards of excellence in historical and textual scholarship. Each volume provides an authoritative text, a substantial historical and critical introduction, and extensive explanatory notes.

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