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"[Madame Bovary] is like that other archetypal reading hero, Don Quixote, in that her reading habits corrupt her vision of the world and her conduct of her life. They are both Romantics. Don Quixote desires to make provincial La Mancha into a battlefield of giants, demons and ladies in distress. Emma Bovary desires to be happy in lovely clothes in swift carriages, dancing at balls, being admired. The psychoanalyst, Ignès Sodré, wrote an illuminating paper on Madame Bovary, entitled 'Death by Daydreaming' in which she used Freud's essay on 'Creative Writers and Daydreaming' to discuss the particular daydreams of Emma Bovary." --A. S. Byatt, 2002 via [1]

"Who of us has not dreamed, on ambitious days, of the miracle of a poetic prose: musical, without rhythm or rhyme; adaptable enough and discordant enough to conform to the lyrical movements of the soul, the waves of revery, the jolts of consciousness?" --À Arsène Houssaye" (1869) by Charles Baudelaire

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Daydreaming is a short-term detachment from one's immediate surroundings, during which a person's contact with reality is blurred and partially substituted by a visionary fantasy, especially one of happy, pleasant thoughts, hopes or ambitions, imagined as coming to pass, and experienced while awake.

There are many types of daydreams, and there is no consistent definition amongst psychologists, however the characteristic that is common to all forms of daydreaming meets the criteria for mild dissociation.



A reverie is a daydream.


From Middle French, from Old French resver (“to consider, reflect, be delirious”), probably from Frankish *rēswan, *rāswan (“to consider, conjecture, guess”), from Proto-Germanic *rēswaną (“to think, reckon, calculate”), from Proto-Indo-European *rei- (“to reason, count”). Cognate with Old English rǣswan (“to think, consider, suspect, conjecture”). Related to Gothic 𐍂𐌰𐌸𐌾𐍉 (raþjō, “account, number, explanation”), Old High German rīm (“number”). More at rhyme.


See also

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