Course Hero Logo
Literature Study GuidesDon QuixotePart 1 Chapter 4 Summary

Don Quixote | Study Guide

Miguel de Cervantes

Get the eBook on Amazon to study offline.

Buy on Amazon Study Guide
Cite This Study Guide

How to Cite This Study Guide

quotation mark graphic


Course Hero. "Don Quixote Study Guide." Course Hero. 15 Sep. 2016. Web. 30 May 2023. <>.

In text

(Course Hero)



Course Hero. (2016, September 15). Don Quixote Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved May 30, 2023, from

In text

(Course Hero, 2016)



Course Hero. "Don Quixote Study Guide." September 15, 2016. Accessed May 30, 2023.


Course Hero, "Don Quixote Study Guide," September 15, 2016, accessed May 30, 2023,

Part 1, Chapter 4

Course Hero Literature Instructor Russell Jaffe provides an in-depth summary and analysis of Part 1, Chapter 4 from Miguel de Cervantes's novel Don Quixote.

Don Quixote | Part 1, Chapter 4 | Summary



Don Quixote heads home for clean shirts, money, and a squire. He sees Andrés tied to a tree, being whipped by his employer. Don Quixote insists that the farmer set Andrés free and pay him what he is owed. Upon Don Quixote's departure, Andrés is tied to the tree again and "whipped ... so hard that [the farmer] left him for dead."

Further down the road, the Don gets into a fight with a group of merchants about Dulcinea del Toboso's beauty. He falls off Rocinante and can't get up due to the weight of his armor.


Don Quixote stands up for what he thinks is right, but his code of conduct isn't in sync with the accepted ethics of the early 17th century. In his mind, there is a clear distinction between right and wrong. He doesn't stop to consider that the boy being whipped actually deserves his punishment, nor does he recognize the futility of fighting about a woman's beauty. His compulsive need to defend the honor of all those who have been wronged causes more trouble for everyone, a recurring theme in the book.

Cervantes uses Don Quixote's ignorance about current social and cultural norms to ridicule the morals portrayed in traditional chivalric romances. A man who only experiences life through the pages of a book has no concept of acceptable behavior in normal society, and such idealism will injure both himself and others.

Cite This Study Guide

information icon Have study documents to share about Don Quixote? Upload them to earn free Course Hero access!