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Jens
2012-Feb-09, 02:04 AM
I have a question about a quotation. Somebody's used the phrase "Facts are the enemy of truth," and attributed this to Cervantes. But I'm kind of suspicious, and it seems that it's actually a quote from the play, Man of La Mancha, so it might not even be from Spanish in the first place. Does anybody know if the phrase actually appears in Cervantes's work? I imagine that in Spanish it would be something like:

Los hechos son los enemigos de la verdad.

Or something like that. This is from my high-school Spanish. . .

Gillianren
2012-Feb-09, 03:20 AM
Well, if it's from the musical, there's at least a possibility that it's from the Spanish. But while I read Don Quixote, it was while I was in high school, some years ago. And I read it in English, because even then, my Spanish wasn't quite up to the original.

Perikles
2012-Feb-09, 11:14 AM
I'm very suspicious as well. I think that Wasserman invented the lines. I've just spent a frustrating hour searching the Spanish text of Don Quijote for key words like verdad, hecho, enemigo (and there are a lot of them!), and then concentrating on passages concerning Aldonza and the conversations between Quijote and Sanson Carrasco, without any success. Although it is just the kind of thing Quijote would have said, it's just not there.

Fazor
2012-Feb-09, 02:26 PM
It certainly sounds more like an interpretation or invented-to-fit quote than something inline with how the original was written, but I'm far from an expert. Tomisimo (http://www.tomisimo.org/) has a forum with a wonderful community dedicated to helping people learn Spanish (or English, for the native Spanish speakers there. It works both ways.) Their forums have a literature section, and I'm sure you could find an answer there.

I'd say "tell 'em 'ol Fazor sent you" but I haven't been active there in quite some time, so they'd just say, "Who?!" :) Still, great folk.

ToSeek
2012-Feb-09, 03:12 PM
The entire Spanish text is online at:

http://www.donquijote.org/spanishlanguage/literature/library/quijote/

You could try searching for potentially matching phrases while adding "site:www.donquijote.org" so Google searches there only.

Perikles
2012-Feb-09, 03:26 PM
Tomisimo (http://www.tomisimo.org/) has a forum with a wonderful community dedicated to helping people learn Spanish (or English, for the native Spanish speakers there. It works both ways.) Their forums have a literature section, and I'm sure you could find an answer there. .You pointed me to that site some time ago, and it has helped me a lot. I'm going to ask them.


The entire Spanish text is online at:.Yes, thanks. I already had a downloaded version on my computer (and even on my Kindle as an e-book), and I've tried searching it with all the obvious keywords, as mentioned. It's not easy, because the words come up often enough, but I have failed to find the quotation.

Edit: I've posted the question on tomisimo - let's see whether I get a response.

HenrikOlsen
2012-Feb-09, 04:39 PM
The fact that the quote is claimed to be from Man of la Mancha rather than from Don Quixote indicates to me that it isn't actually Cervantes.

BTW, I searched an English translation of Don Quixote like Pericles did the Spanish and didn't find anything remotely like that quote.

Perikles
2012-Feb-09, 07:11 PM
I've had an authoritative response from tomisimo to the effect that the quotation is indeed from Man of la Mancha, and not from Cervantes. See e.g. here (http://h-net.msu.edu/cgi-bin/logbrowse.pl?trx=vx&list=h-cervantes&month=9705&week=d&msg=l20gGioOk80kfn1%2BEayP7Q&user=&pw)

The confusion arises because it is the character Don Quijote in Man of la Mancha who says this, so that the assertion that Don Quijote said it is technically correct, but misleading. The play is based heavily on the Cervantes figure, and the statement is a summary of everything behind what the DQ of Cervantes says and does.

I find it interesting that the statement "Don Quijote said it" naturally becomes "Cervantes said it in 'Don Quijote'", and that nobody on the internet bothers to give accurate references when they quote something.

profloater
2012-Feb-11, 12:17 AM
Don Quijote has taken on a archetypal role like Sherlock Holmes or Rumpole of the Bailey, their fiction is so caste as to form a more real historical character than most real people ever achieve. Of course there is Lear and Hamlet and Macbeth and then we get to the Greek heroes still brought to life when we need an exemplar. I am sure many people could believe they are all actual historicam figures, why not?