"As I walk'd through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place, where was a Denn; And I laid me down in that place to sleep: And as I slept I dreamed a Dream." So begins one of the best-loved and most widely read books in English literature. An acknowledged classic of the heroic Puritan tradition, and a founding text in the development of the English novel, The Pilgrim's Progress has inspired readers for over three centuries. The story of Christian, whose pilgrimage takes him through the Slough of Despond, Vanity Fair, and the Delectable Mountains, is full of danger and adventure. Together with his trusty companions, Faithful and Hopeful, he encounters many enemies before finally arriving at the Celestial City. John Bunyan's own experience of religious persecution informs his story, but its qualities of psychological realism, and the beauty and simplicity of his prose, give the book universal appeal.