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Luce Foundation Center for American Art

Painting: 19th century: (Scene from Don Quixote)
(Scene from Don Quixote)

(Scene from Don Quixote)
John Ritto Penniman
oil on wood
30 x 24 3/4 in. (76.2 x 62.9 cm.)
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. George Viault

This painting shows a scene from the seventeenth-century novel Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. Inspired by stories of chivalry, Don Quixote traveled “through the world in search of adventures.” He met a young girl who had run away from home disguised in boy’s clothing. Here, she has just been discovered by three of Quixote’s companions, who stare in confusion, aroused by “his” beautiful long legs that appear to be made of “pure alabaster.”

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