Maarten Maartensz:    Philosophical Dictionary | Filosofisch Woordenboek                      

 Q - Quixote


Quixote: Don Q., hero in Cervantes' book of that title: Proverbial deluded noble fool.

Deluded: His beliefs are false and his ends therefore not reachable.
Noble: He means well and is courageous and kind wherever possible.
Fool: He behaves and speaks like a crazy person when his delusions are involved.

Also widely used by ordinary men to brandish idealists among them, who try to make some sort of better world: Ordinary men widely believe this is either not possible at all - everybody must be as immoral as they know themselves to be in real life, according to their own norms, or so ordinary men believe - or else only if the authorities agree. And ordinary men tend to be levellers: Nobody among them is allowed to be better than they are, for which reasons they consider deluded whomever does not share their prejudices.

Whence quixotic: Misguided idealist.


See also: Fool



 Original: Aug 26, 2004                                                Last edited: 12 December 2011.   Top