The son of a deaf surgeon, Miguel de Cervantes was born near Madrid in 1547. He became a soldier in 1570 and was badly wounded in the Battle of Lepanto. Captured by the Turks in 1575, de Cervantes spent five years in prison. He was freed in 1580 and returned home. De Cervantes finally achieved literary success in his later years, publishing the first part of Don Quixote in 1605. He died in 1616.