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Humanities 2113H

Don Quixote

To start out, we'll look at this scan of the first English translation of Don Quixote: The History of Don-Quichote (1620). Our copy is the second edition of Thomas Shelton's translation of part 1, printed in conjunction with the 1st ed. of his translation of part 2. 

Take a look at the title page.

  • What is the subject of this image? How can you tell?
  • What written information is contained here? 
  • What information is missing? 
  • How do you think this image was made?
  • Why might the printer have decided to include a title page like this one?

Examine the beginning of Chapter 1.

  • What differences do you notice from the translation you're reading?
  • What would it be like to read this copy?

Breakout Groups

Questions for Discussion

  • How was this item produced? If it’s an image, is it a woodcut or engraving? How can you tell?
  • What do you notice about the page? What traces of its production are visible?
  • Compare the experience of reading this item to that of reading your text books. Are there significant differences in the text?
  • What might you be missing by accessing this material in digital form? What questions do you have about the original item?


John Milton

The poetical works of Mr. John Milton: containing Paradise lost, Paradise regain'd, Sampson Agonistes, and his Poems on several occasions. London: Printed for Jacob Tonson ..., 1695.
Original in Special Collections: Rare-L PR3550 .C95

Milton's Paradise Lost, illustrated by Gustave Doré. Edited with notes and a life of Milton by Robert Vaughan. London; New York: Cassell, Petter, Galpin & co., [1866].
Original in Special Collections: Rare-L PR3560 1866


William Hogarth

Hogarth meant his works to stand on their own without text, but several authors published their own interpretations of his images. These are two different commentaries on Hogarth’s work.

John Trusler, The Works of Mr. Hogarth Moralized. London: J. Goodwin, [1797].
Original in Special Collections: Rare ND497.H7 T8

John Ireland, Hogarth Illustrated. [London]: J.& J. Boydell, 1791.
Original in Special Collections: Rare ND497.H7 I6


Phillis Wheatley

Poem: “On Recollection,” Gentleman’s Magazine Sept. 1773, p. 456.
Original in Special Collections: Rare AP4 .G35

Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral. London: Printed for A. Bell, Bookseller, Aldgate and sold by Messrs Cox and Berry, King-Street, 1773.


William Blake

The Blake Archive provides digital copies of different works produced by Blake, including different copies of the same work which can be compared side-by-side. In this session, students will look at Blake’s illustrations for Milton’s Paradise Lost.


Mary Shelley

Frankenstein, or, the modern Prometheus, by the author of the Last man, Perkin Warbeck, &c. &c. London : R. Bentley, 1849. [A reprint of the 1831 edition]
Original in Special Collections: Rare PR5397 .F7 1849

Frankenstein, or, The modern Prometheus. London: Printed for Lackington, Hughes, Harding, Mavor, & Jones, 1818.


Emily Dickinson

Success” in Poems by Emily Dickinson; edited by two of her friends Mabel Loomis Todd and T.W. Higginson. Boston: Roberts brothers, 1890. [Scan is a 1904 reprint of the 1890 edition]
Original 1890 edition in Special Collections: Rare 818 D56p4 

Success” manuscript. Original from Boston Public Library.