The popular Spanish novel, Miguel de Cervantes’s Don Quixote is a parody for legendary. It imitates traditional legendary in an amusing way so as to destroy the standard expectation behind this major genre. Therefore, its plot structure can be compared with Chretien de Troyes’ Erec and Enide, a classic love epic in Late Middle Ages. In Erec and Enide, the worth of chivalry, courtly love and visitor and host relationship may be found in this work. Speaking of chivalry, it starts from Erec’s appropriate qualities of knighthood: handsome, valiant, noble, young and wealthy.
He is qualified as a knight perfectly in appearance, social position and character. Afterwards, Erec goes through two adventures. In the first one, he experiences a dishonored occasion, humiliated by a dwarf, the knight called Yder’s servant, and he fights and gains his honor back. In this fight, the dwarf’s physical imperfect may recommend his psychological shortage, considering that he didn’t go searching as other knights do, but he chose to accompany the queen with casual gown. This behavior and his absence of equipment may suggest that he might not satisfy his responsibility of chivalry well.
Therefore, the retribution indicates not only for the return for his honor however for the correction for his uncourtly habits. After that, Erec ends up being so attached to his spouse, Enide, that he gives up searching with other knights. Afterwards, he goes on to the second journey. In the second one, he came across a giant, Guivret, who symbolizes his overacting of courtesy. Guivret is likewise beat, revealing that Erec has actually remedied his habits of exaggerating. These 2 experiences inform that chivalry should be followed neither doing not have nor surpassing.
When it concerns courtly love, it may be revealed from the relationship between Erec and the queen. At the beginning of the story, Erec’s undressing and his accompany with the queen may suppose his unusual relationship with her. When he triumphs over Yder, he commands Yder to go back to the queen to honor her. Since Erec can’t make this love toward her be revealed for the distinction of social status, he puts this love into his heart and exposes it in this method. When it comes to the relationship between visitor and host, Erec meets the dad of Enide and he shows his hospitality to Erec, and he in the end was rewarded for honor and wealth.
Although Don Quixote has comparable structure, its context reverses audience’s expectation of conventional epic and makes fun of it. First, speaking of chivalry, Don Quixote’s appearance may not be sufficient: he is an old and lean person with a meager face. Besides, he is applauded by getting up early; apparently it is not a description for a great knight. Cervantes makes Don Quixote amusing by these representations. Later, he has a number of adventures, and in one of them he comes across the Biscayan, a servant of the girls.
Don Quixote’s fight with him imitates the combat in between knights, which it ends with Don Quixote’s success and his ask for the Biscayan to ask for mercy in front of his beloved lady, Dulcinea del Toboso. Second, as to courtly love, Don Quixote thought of a farm lady, Aldonza Lorenzo, to be the Princess Dulcinea del Toboso. Despite the fact that every time Don Quixote calls her name before he is going to battle, he never speaks to her, nor did her understand his name. Besides, unlike the noble ladies in standard chivalry work, Dulcinea is referred to as “the best hand of any woman in all La Mancha for salting pigs”.
Third, when it comes to the relationship of visitor and host, in Don Quixote’s first journey he breaks the law of visitor and host. He goes into the inn and difficulties the landlord to the degree that the proprietor desires him to leave without charging him. In conclusion, Cervantes doesn’t only mimic the romantic impressive terribly for buffooning it. He likewise wants to slam it by putting a knight to the 17th century. The worth of chivalry may differ from the value in 17th century society so much that the initially typical behavior of knights seems ridiculous in people’s eyes from various time.