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Don Quixote by Miqeul de Cervantes [Saavedra]

Part 15 out of 21

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such a din, thought it would be right to aid the fugitives, and
standing up he exclaimed in a loud voice, "Never, while I live, will I
permit foul play to be practised in my presence on such a famous
knight and fearless lover as Don Gaiferos. Halt! ill-born rabble,
follow him not nor pursue him, or ye will have to reckon with me in
battle!" and suiting the action to the word, he drew his sword, and
with one bound placed himself close to the show, and with unexampled
rapidity and fury began to shower down blows on the puppet troop of
Moors, knocking over some, decapitating others, maiming this one and
demolishing that; and among many more he delivered one down stroke
which, if Master Pedro had not ducked, made himself small, and got out
of the way, would have sliced off his head as easily as if it had been
made of almond-paste. Master Pedro kept shouting, "Hold hard! Senor
Don Quixote! can't you see they're not real Moors you're knocking down
and killing and destroying, but only little pasteboard figures!
Look- sinner that I am!- how you're wrecking and ruining all that
I'm worth!" But in spite of this, Don Quixote did not leave off
discharging a continuous rain of cuts, slashes, downstrokes, and
backstrokes, and at length, in less than the space of two credos, he
brought the whole show to the ground, with all its fittings and
figures shivered and knocked to pieces, King Marsilio badly wounded,
and the Emperor Charlemagne with his crown and head split in two.
The whole audience was thrown into confusion, the ape fled to the roof
of the inn, the cousin was frightened, and even Sancho Panza himself
was in mighty fear, for, as he swore after the storm was over, he
had never seen his master in such a furious passion.

The complete destruction of the show being thus accomplished, Don
Quixote became a little calmer, said, "I wish I had here before me now
all those who do not or will not believe how useful knights-errant are
in the world; just think, if I had not been here present, what would
have become of the brave Don Gaiferos and the fair Melisendra!
Depend upon it, by this time those dogs would have overtaken them
and inflicted some outrage upon them. So, then, long live
knight-errantry beyond everything living on earth this day!"

"Let it live, and welcome," said Master Pedro at this in a feeble
voice, "and let me die, for I am so unfortunate that I can say with
King Don Rodrigo-

Yesterday was I lord of Spain
To-day I've not a turret left
That I may call mine own.

Not half an hour, nay, barely a minute ago, I saw myself lord of kings
and emperors, with my stables filled with countless horses, and my
trunks and bags with gay dresses unnumbered; and now I find myself
ruined and laid low, destitute and a beggar, and above all without
my ape, for, by my faith, my teeth will have to sweat for it before
I have him caught; and all through the reckless fury of sir knight
here, who, they say, protects the fatherless, and rights wrongs, and
does other charitable deeds; but whose generous intentions have been
found wanting in my case only, blessed and praised be the highest
heavens! Verily, knight of the rueful figure he must be to have
disfigured mine."

Sancho Panza was touched by Master Pedro's words, and said to him,
"Don't weep and lament, Master Pedro; you break my heart; let me
tell you my master, Don Quixote, is so catholic and scrupulous a
Christian that, if he can make out that he has done you any wrong,
he will own it, and be willing to pay for it and make it good, and
something over and above."

"Only let Senor Don Quixote pay me for some part of the work he
has destroyed," said Master Pedro, "and I would be content, and his
worship would ease his conscience, for he cannot be saved who keeps
what is another's against the owner's will, and makes no restitution."

"That is true," said Don Quixote; "but at present I am not aware
that I have got anything of yours, Master Pedro."

"What!" returned Master Pedro; "and these relics lying here on the
bare hard ground- what scattered and shattered them but the invincible
strength of that mighty arm? And whose were the bodies they belonged
to but mine? And what did I get my living by but by them?"

"Now am I fully convinced," said Don Quixote, "of what I had many
a time before believed; that the enchanters who persecute me do
nothing more than put figures like these before my eyes, and then
change and turn them into what they please. In truth and earnest, I
assure you gentlemen who now hear me, that to me everything that has
taken place here seemed to take place literally, that Melisendra was
Melisendra, Don Gaiferos Don Gaiferos, Marsilio Marsilio, and
Charlemagne Charlemagne. That was why my anger was roused; and to be
faithful to my calling as a knight-errant I sought to give aid and
protection to those who fled, and with this good intention I did
what you have seen. If the result has been the opposite of what I
intended, it is no fault of mine, but of those wicked beings that
persecute me; but, for all that, I am willing to condemn myself in
costs for this error of mine, though it did not proceed from malice;
let Master Pedro see what he wants for the spoiled figures, for I
agree to pay it at once in good and current money of Castile."

Master Pedro made him a bow, saying, "I expected no less of the rare
Christianity of the valiant Don Quixote of La Mancha, true helper
and protector of all destitute and needy vagabonds; master landlord
here and the great Sancho Panza shall be the arbitrators and
appraisers between your worship and me of what these dilapidated
figures are worth or may be worth."

The landlord and Sancho consented, and then Master Pedro picked up
from the ground King Marsilio of Saragossa with his head off, and
said, "Here you see how impossible it is to restore this king to his
former state, so I think, saving your better judgments, that for his
death, decease, and demise, four reals and a half may be given me."

"Proceed," said Don Quixote.

"Well then, for this cleavage from top to bottom," continued
Master Pedro, taking up the split Emperor Charlemagne, "it would not
be much if I were to ask five reals and a quarter."

"It's not little," said Sancho.

"Nor is it much," said the landlord; "make it even, and say five

"Let him have the whole five and a quarter," said Don Quixote;
"for the sum total of this notable disaster does not stand on a
quarter more or less; and make an end of it quickly, Master Pedro, for
it's getting on to supper-time, and I have some hints of hunger."

"For this figure," said Master Pedro, "that is without a nose, and
wants an eye, and is the fair Melisendra, I ask, and I am reasonable
in my charge, two reals and twelve maravedis."

"The very devil must be in it," said Don Quixote, "if Melisendra and
her husband are not by this time at least on the French border, for
the horse they rode on seemed to me to fly rather than gallop; so
you needn't try to sell me the cat for the hare, showing me here a
noseless Melisendra when she is now, may be, enjoying herself at her
ease with her husband in France. God help every one to his own, Master
Pedro, and let us all proceed fairly and honestly; and now go on."

Master Pedro, perceiving that Don Quixote was beginning to wander,
and return to his original fancy, was not disposed to let him
escape, so he said to him, "This cannot be Melisendra, but must be one
of the damsels that waited on her; so if I'm given sixty maravedis for
her, I'll be content and sufficiently paid."

And so he went on, putting values on ever so many more smashed
figures, which, after the two arbitrators had adjusted them to the
satisfaction of both parties, came to forty reals and
three-quarters; and over and above this sum, which Sancho at once
disbursed, Master Pedro asked for two reals for his trouble in
catching the ape.

"Let him have them, Sancho," said Don Quixote; "not to catch the
ape, but to get drunk; and two hundred would I give this minute for
the good news, to anyone who could tell me positively, that the lady
Dona Melisandra and Senor Don Gaiferos were now in France and with
their own people."

"No one could tell us that better than my ape," said Master Pedro;
"but there's no devil that could catch him now; I suspect, however,
that affection and hunger will drive him to come looking for me
to-night; but to-morrow will soon be here and we shall see."

In short, the puppet-show storm passed off, and all supped in
peace and good fellowship at Don Quixote's expense, for he was the
height of generosity. Before it was daylight the man with the lances
and halberds took his departure, and soon after daybreak the cousin
and the page came to bid Don Quixote farewell, the former returning
home, the latter resuming his journey, towards which, to help him, Don
Quixote gave him twelve reals. Master Pedro did not care to engage
in any more palaver with Don Quixote, whom he knew right well; so he
rose before the sun, and having got together the remains of his show
and caught his ape, he too went off to seek his adventures. The
landlord, who did not know Don Quixote, was as much astonished at
his mad freaks as at his generosity. To conclude, Sancho, by his
master's orders, paid him very liberally, and taking leave of him they
quitted the inn at about eight in the morning and took to the road,
where we will leave them to pursue their journey, for this is
necessary in order to allow certain other matters to be set forth,
which are required to clear up this famous history.



Cide Hamete, the chronicler of this great history, begins this
chapter with these words, "I swear as a Catholic Christian;" with
regard to which his translator says that Cide Hamete's swearing as a
Catholic Christian, he being- as no doubt he was- a Moor, only meant
that, just as a Catholic Christian taking an oath swears, or ought
to swear, what is true, and tell the truth in what he avers, so he was
telling the truth, as much as if he swore as a Catholic Christian,
in all he chose to write about Quixote, especially in declaring who
Master Pedro was and what was the divining ape that astonished all the
villages with his divinations. He says, then, that he who has read the
First Part of this history will remember well enough the Gines de
Pasamonte whom, with other galley slaves, Don Quixote set free in
the Sierra Morena: a kindness for which he afterwards got poor
thanks and worse payment from that evil-minded, ill-conditioned set.
This Gines de Pasamonte- Don Ginesillo de Parapilla, Don Quixote
called him- it was that stole Dapple from Sancho Panza; which, because
by the fault of the printers neither the how nor the when was stated
in the First Part, has been a puzzle to a good many people, who
attribute to the bad memory of the author what was the error of the
press. In fact, however, Gines stole him while Sancho Panza was asleep
on his back, adopting the plan and device that Brunello had recourse
to when he stole Sacripante's horse from between his legs at the siege
of Albracca; and, as has been told, Sancho afterwards recovered him.
This Gines, then, afraid of being caught by the officers of justice,
who were looking for him to punish him for his numberless
rascalities and offences (which were so many and so great that he
himself wrote a big book giving an account of them), resolved to shift
his quarters into the kingdom of Aragon, and cover up his left eye,
and take up the trade of a puppet-showman; for this, as well as
juggling, he knew how to practise to perfection. From some released
Christians returning from Barbary, it so happened, he bought the
ape, which he taught to mount upon his shoulder on his making a
certain sign, and to whisper, or seem to do so, in his ear. Thus
prepared, before entering any village whither he was bound with his
show and his ape, he used to inform himself at the nearest village, or
from the most likely person he could find, as to what particular
things had happened there, and to whom; and bearing them well in mind,
the first thing be did was to exhibit his show, sometimes one story,
sometimes another, but all lively, amusing, and familiar. As soon as
the exhibition was over he brought forward the accomplishments of
his ape, assuring the public that he divined all the past and the
present, but as to the future he had no skill. For each question
answered he asked two reals, and for some he made a reduction, just as
he happened to feel the pulse of the questioners; and when now and
then he came to houses where things that he knew of had happened to
the people living there, even if they did not ask him a question,
not caring to pay for it, he would make the sign to the ape and then
declare that it had said so and so, which fitted the case exactly.
In this way he acquired a prodigious name and all ran after him; on
other occasions, being very crafty, he would answer in such a way that
the answers suited the questions; and as no one cross-questioned him
or pressed him to tell how his ape divined, he made fools of them
all and filled his pouch. The instant he entered the inn he knew Don
Quixote and Sancho, and with that knowledge it was easy for him to
astonish them and all who were there; but it would have cost him
dear had Don Quixote brought down his hand a little lower when he
cut off King Marsilio's head and destroyed all his horsemen, as
related in the preceeding chapter.

So much for Master Pedro and his ape; and now to return to Don
Quixote of La Mancha. After he had left the inn he determined to
visit, first of all, the banks of the Ebro and that neighbourhood,
before entering the city of Saragossa, for the ample time there was
still to spare before the jousts left him enough for all. With this
object in view he followed the road and travelled along it for two
days, without meeting any adventure worth committing to writing
until on the third day, as he was ascending a hill, he heard a great
noise of drums, trumpets, and musket-shots. At first he imagined
some regiment of soldiers was passing that way, and to see them he
spurred Rocinante and mounted the hill. On reaching the top he saw
at the foot of it over two hundred men, as it seemed to him, armed
with weapons of various sorts, lances, crossbows, partisans, halberds,
and pikes, and a few muskets and a great many bucklers. He descended
the slope and approached the band near enough to see distinctly the
flags, make out the colours and distinguish the devices they bore,
especially one on a standard or ensign of white satin, on which
there was painted in a very life-like style an ass like a little sard,
with its head up, its mouth open and its tongue out, as if it were
in the act and attitude of braying; and round it were inscribed in
large characters these two lines-

They did not bray in vain,
Our alcaldes twain.

From this device Don Quixote concluded that these people must be
from the braying town, and he said so to Sancho, explaining to him
what was written on the standard. At the same time be observed that
the man who had told them about the matter was wrong in saying that
the two who brayed were regidors, for according to the lines of the
standard they were alcaldes. To which Sancho replied, "Senor,
there's nothing to stick at in that, for maybe the regidors who brayed
then came to he alcaldes of their town afterwards, and so they may
go by both titles; moreover, it has nothing to do with the truth of
the story whether the brayers were alcaldes or regidors, provided at
any rate they did bray; for an alcalde is just as likely to bray as
a regidor." They perceived, in short, clearly that the town which
had been twitted had turned out to do battle with some other that
had jeered it more than was fair or neighbourly.

Don Quixote proceeded to join them, not a little to Sancho's
uneasiness, for he never relished mixing himself up in expeditions
of that sort. The members of the troop received him into the midst
of them, taking him to he some one who was on their side. Don Quixote,
putting up his visor, advanced with an easy bearing and demeanour to
the standard with the ass, and all the chief men of the army
gathered round him to look at him, staring at him with the usual
amazement that everybody felt on seeing him for the first time. Don
Quixote, seeing them examining him so attentively, and that none of
them spoke to him or put any question to him, determined to take
advantage of their silence; so, breaking his own, he lifted up his
voice and said, "Worthy sirs, I entreat you as earnestly as I can
not to interrupt an argument I wish to address to you, until you
find it displeases or wearies you; and if that come to pass, on the
slightest hint you give me I will put a seal upon my lips and a gag
upon my tongue."

They all bade him say what he liked, for they would listen to him

With this permission Don Quixote went on to say, "I, sirs, am a
knight-errant whose calling is that of arms, and whose profession is
to protect those who require protection, and give help to such as
stand in need of it. Some days ago I became acquainted with your
misfortune and the cause which impels you to take up arms again and
again to revenge yourselves upon your enemies; and having many times
thought over your business in my mind, I find that, according to the
laws of combat, you are mistaken in holding yourselves insulted; for a
private individual cannot insult an entire community; unless it be
by defying it collectively as a traitor, because he cannot tell who in
particular is guilty of the treason for which he defies it. Of this we
have an example in Don Diego Ordonez de Lara, who defied the whole
town of Zamora, because he did not know that Vellido Dolfos alone
had committed the treachery of slaying his king; and therefore he
defied them all, and the vengeance and the reply concerned all;
though, to be sure, Senor Don Diego went rather too far, indeed very
much beyond the limits of a defiance; for he had no occasion to defy
the dead, or the waters, or the fishes, or those yet unborn, and all
the rest of it as set forth; but let that pass, for when anger
breaks out there's no father, governor, or bridle to check the tongue.
The case being, then, that no one person can insult a kingdom,
province, city, state, or entire community, it is clear there is no
reason for going out to avenge the defiance of such an insult,
inasmuch as it is not one. A fine thing it would be if the people of
the clock town were to be at loggerheads every moment with everyone
who called them by that name, -or the Cazoleros, Berengeneros,
Ballenatos, Jaboneros, or the bearers of all the other names and
titles that are always in the mouth of the boys and common people!
It would be a nice business indeed if all these illustrious cities
were to take huff and revenge themselves and go about perpetually
making trombones of their swords in every petty quarrel! No, no; God
forbid! There are four things for which sensible men and
well-ordered States ought to take up arms, draw their swords, and risk
their persons, lives, and properties. The first is to defend the
Catholic faith; the second, to defend one's life, which is in
accordance with natural and divine law; the third, in defence of one's
honour, family, and property; the fourth, in the service of one's king
in a just war; and if to these we choose to add a fifth (which may
be included in the second), in defence of one's country. To these
five, as it were capital causes, there may be added some others that
may be just and reasonable, and make it a duty to take up arms; but to
take them up for trifles and things to laugh at and he amused by
rather than offended, looks as though he who did so was altogether
wanting in common sense. Moreover, to take an unjust revenge (and
there cannot be any just one) is directly opposed to the sacred law
that we acknowledge, wherein we are commanded to do good to our
enemies and to love them that hate us; a command which, though it
seems somewhat difficult to obey, is only so to those who have in them
less of God than of the world, and more of the flesh than of the
spirit; for Jesus Christ, God and true man, who never lied, and
could not and cannot lie, said, as our law-giver, that his yoke was
easy and his burden light; he would not, therefore, have laid any
command upon us that it was impossible to obey. Thus, sirs, you are
bound to keep quiet by human and divine law."

"The devil take me," said Sancho to himself at this, "but this
master of mine is a tologian; or, if not, faith, he's as like one as
one egg is like another."

Don Quixote stopped to take breath, and, observing that silence
was still preserved, had a mind to continue his discourse, and would
have done so had not Sancho interposed with his smartness; for he,
seeing his master pause, took the lead, saying, "My lord Don Quixote
of La Mancha, who once was called the Knight of the Rueful
Countenance, but now is called the Knight of the Lions, is a gentleman
of great discretion who knows Latin and his mother tongue like a
bachelor, and in everything that he deals with or advises proceeds
like a good soldier, and has all the laws and ordinances of what
they call combat at his fingers' ends; so you have nothing to do but
to let yourselves be guided by what he says, and on my head be it if
it is wrong. Besides which, you have been told that it is folly to
take offence at merely hearing a bray. I remember when I was a boy I
brayed as often as I had a fancy, without anyone hindering me, and
so elegantly and naturally that when I brayed all the asses in the
town would bray; but I was none the less for that the son of my
parents who were greatly respected; and though I was envied because of
the gift by more than one of the high and mighty ones of the town, I
did not care two farthings for it; and that you may see I am telling
the truth, wait a bit and listen, for this art, like swimming, once
learnt is never forgotten;" and then, taking hold of his nose, he
began to bray so vigorously that all the valleys around rang again.

One of those, however, that stood near him, fancying he was
mocking them, lifted up a long staff he had in his hand and smote
him such a blow with it that Sancho dropped helpless to the ground.
Don Quixote, seeing him so roughly handled, attacked the man who had
struck him lance in hand, but so many thrust themselves between them
that he could not avenge him. Far from it, finding a shower of
stones rained upon him, and crossbows and muskets unnumbered
levelled at him, he wheeled Rocinante round and, as fast as his best
gallop could take him, fled from the midst of them, commending himself
to God with all his heart to deliver him out of this peril, in dread
every step of some ball coming in at his back and coming out at his
breast, and every minute drawing his breath to see whether it had gone
from him. The members of the band, however, were satisfied with seeing
him take to flight, and did not fire on him. They put up Sancho,
scarcely restored to his senses, on his ass, and let him go after
his master; not that he was sufficiently in his wits to guide the
beast, but Dapple followed the footsteps of Rocinante, from whom he
could not remain a moment separated. Don Quixote having got some way
off looked back, and seeing Sancho coming, waited for him, as he
perceived that no one followed him. The men of the troop stood their
ground till night, and as the enemy did not come out to battle, they
returned to their town exulting; and had they been aware of the
ancient custom of the Greeks, they would have erected a trophy on
the spot.



When the brave man flees, treachery is manifest and it is for wise
men to reserve themselves for better occasions. This proved to be
the case with Don Quixote, who, giving way before the fury of the
townsfolk and the hostile intentions of the angry troop, took to
flight and, without a thought of Sancho or the danger in which he
was leaving him, retreated to such a distance as he thought made him
safe. Sancho, lying across his ass, followed him, as has been said,
and at length came up, having by this time recovered his senses, and
on joining him let himself drop off Dapple at Rocinante's feet,
sore, bruised, and belaboured. Don Quixote dismounted to examine his
wounds, but finding him whole from head to foot, he said to him,
angrily enough, "In an evil hour didst thou take to braying, Sancho!
Where hast thou learned that it is well done to mention the rope in
the house of the man that has been hanged? To the music of brays
what harmonies couldst thou expect to get but cudgels? Give thanks
to God, Sancho, that they signed the cross on thee just now with a
stick, and did not mark thee per signum crucis with a cutlass."

"I'm not equal to answering," said Sancho, "for I feel as if I was
speaking through my shoulders; let us mount and get away from this;
I'll keep from braying, but not from saying that knights-errant fly
and leave their good squires to be pounded like privet, or made meal
of at the hands of their enemies."

"He does not fly who retires," returned Don Quixote; "for I would
have thee know, Sancho, that the valour which is not based upon a
foundation of prudence is called rashness, and the exploits of the
rash man are to be attributed rather to good fortune than to
courage; and so I own that I retired, but not that I fled; and therein
I have followed the example of many valiant men who have reserved
themselves for better times; the histories are full of instances of
this, but as it would not be any good to thee or pleasure to me, I
will not recount them to thee now."

Sancho was by this time mounted with the help of Don Quixote, who
then himself mounted Rocinante, and at a leisurely pace they proceeded
to take shelter in a grove which was in sight about a quarter of a
league off. Every now and then Sancho gave vent to deep sighs and
dismal groans, and on Don Quixote asking him what caused such acute
suffering, he replied that, from the end of his back-bone up to the
nape of his neck, he was so sore that it nearly drove him out of his

"The cause of that soreness," said Don Quixote, "will be, no
doubt, that the staff wherewith they smote thee being a very long one,
it caught thee all down the back, where all the parts that are sore
are situated, and had it reached any further thou wouldst be sorer

"By God," said Sancho, "your worship has relieved me of a great
doubt, and cleared up the point for me in elegant style! Body o' me!
is the cause of my soreness such a mystery that there's any need to
tell me I am sore everywhere the staff hit me? If it was my ankles
that pained me there might be something in going divining why they
did, but it is not much to divine that I'm sore where they thrashed
me. By my faith, master mine, the ills of others hang by a hair; every
day I am discovering more and more how little I have to hope for
from keeping company with your worship; for if this time you have
allowed me to be drubbed, the next time, or a hundred times more,
we'll have the blanketings of the other day over again, and all the
other pranks which, if they have fallen on my shoulders now, will be
thrown in my teeth by-and-by. I would do a great deal better (if I was
not an ignorant brute that will never do any good all my life), I
would do a great deal better, I say, to go home to my wife and
children and support them and bring them up on what God may please
to give me, instead of following your worship along roads that lead
nowhere and paths that are none at all, with little to drink and
less to eat. And then when it comes to sleeping! Measure out seven
feet on the earth, brother squire, and if that's not enough for you,
take as many more, for you may have it all your own way and stretch
yourself to your heart's content. Oh that I could see burnt and turned
to ashes the first man that meddled with knight-errantry or at any
rate the first who chose to be squire to such fools as all the
knights-errant of past times must have been! Of those of the present
day I say nothing, because, as your worship is one of them, I
respect them, and because I know your worship knows a point more
than the devil in all you say and think."

"I would lay a good wager with you, Sancho," said Don Quixote, "that
now that you are talking on without anyone to stop you, you don't feel
a pain in your whole body. Talk away, my son, say whatever comes
into your head or mouth, for so long as you feel no pain, the
irritation your impertinences give me will he a pleasure to me; and if
you are so anxious to go home to your wife and children, God forbid
that I should prevent you; you have money of mine; see how long it
is since we left our village this third time, and how much you can and
ought to earn every month, and pay yourself out of your own hand."

"When I worked for Tom Carrasco, the father of the bachelor Samson
Carrasco that your worship knows," replied Sancho, "I used to earn two
ducats a month besides my food; I can't tell what I can earn with your
worship, though I know a knight-errant's squire has harder times of it
than he who works for a farmer; for after all, we who work for
farmers, however much we toil all day, at the worst, at night, we have
our olla supper and sleep in a bed, which I have not slept in since
I have been in your worship's service, if it wasn't the short time
we were in Don Diego de Miranda's house, and the feast I had with
the skimmings I took off Camacho's pots, and what I ate, drank, and
slept in Basilio's house; all the rest of the time I have been
sleeping on the hard ground under the open sky, exposed to what they
call the inclemencies of heaven, keeping life in me with scraps of
cheese and crusts of bread, and drinking water either from the
brooks or from the springs we come to on these by-paths we travel."

"I own, Sancho," said Don Quixote, "that all thou sayest is true;
how much, thinkest thou, ought I to give thee over and above what
Tom Carrasco gave thee?"

"I think," said Sancho, "that if your worship was to add on two
reals a month I'd consider myself well paid; that is, as far as the
wages of my labour go; but to make up to me for your worship's
pledge and promise to me to give me the government of an island, it
would be fair to add six reals more, making thirty in all."

"Very good," said Don Quixote; "it is twenty-five days since we left
our village, so reckon up, Sancho, according to the wages you have
made out for yourself, and see how much I owe you in proportion, and
pay yourself, as I said before, out of your own hand."

"O body o' me!" said Sancho, "but your worship is very much out in
that reckoning; for when it comes to the promise of the island we must
count from the day your worship promised it to me to this present hour
we are at now."

"Well, how long is it, Sancho, since I promised it to you?" said Don

"If I remember rightly," said Sancho, "it must be over twenty years,
three days more or less."

Don Quixote gave himself a great slap on the forehead and began to
laugh heartily, and said he, "Why, I have not been wandering, either
in the Sierra Morena or in the whole course of our sallies, but barely
two months, and thou sayest, Sancho, that it is twenty years since I
promised thee the island. I believe now thou wouldst have all the
money thou hast of mine go in thy wages. If so, and if that be thy
pleasure, I give it to thee now, once and for all, and much good may
it do thee, for so long as I see myself rid of such a good-for-nothing
squire I'll be glad to be left a pauper without a rap. But tell me,
thou perverter of the squirely rules of knight-errantry, where hast
thou ever seen or read that any knight-errant's squire made terms with
his lord, 'you must give me so much a month for serving you'?
Plunge, scoundrel, rogue, monster- for such I take thee to be- plunge,
I say, into the mare magnum of their histories; and if thou shalt find
that any squire ever said or thought what thou hast said now, I will
let thee nail it on my forehead, and give me, over and above, four
sound slaps in the face. Turn the rein, or the halter, of thy
Dapple, and begone home; for one single step further thou shalt not
make in my company. O bread thanklessly received! O promises
ill-bestowed! O man more beast than human being! Now, when I was about
to raise thee to such a position, that, in spite of thy wife, they
would call thee 'my lord,' thou art leaving me? Thou art going now
when I had a firm and fixed intention of making thee lord of the
best island in the world? Well, as thou thyself hast said before
now, honey is not for the mouth of the ass. Ass thou art, ass thou
wilt be, and ass thou wilt end when the course of thy life is run; for
I know it will come to its close before thou dost perceive or
discern that thou art a beast."

Sancho regarded Don Quixote earnestly while he was giving him this
rating, and was so touched by remorse that the tears came to his eyes,
and in a piteous and broken voice he said to him, "Master mine, I
confess that, to be a complete ass, all I want is a tail; if your
worship will only fix one on to me, I'll look on it as rightly placed,
and I'll serve you as an ass all the remaining days of my life.
Forgive me and have pity on my folly, and remember I know but
little, and, if I talk much, it's more from infirmity than malice; but
he who sins and mends commends himself to God."

"I should have been surprised, Sancho," said Don Quixote, "if thou
hadst not introduced some bit of a proverb into thy speech. Well,
well, I forgive thee, provided thou dost mend and not show thyself
in future so fond of thine own interest, but try to be of good cheer
and take heart, and encourage thyself to look forward to the
fulfillment of my promises, which, by being delayed, does not become

Sancho said he would do so, and keep up his heart as best he
could. They then entered the grove, and Don Quixote settled himself at
the foot of an elm, and Sancho at that of a beech, for trees of this
kind and others like them always have feet but no hands. Sancho passed
the night in pain, for with the evening dews the blow of the staff
made itself felt all the more. Don Quixote passed it in his
never-failing meditations; but, for all that, they had some winks of
sleep, and with the appearance of daylight they pursued their
journey in quest of the banks of the famous Ebro, where that befell
them which will be told in the following chapter.



By stages as already described or left undescribed, two days after
quitting the grove Don Quixote and Sancho reached the river Ebro,
and the sight of it was a great delight to Don Quixote as he
contemplated and gazed upon the charms of its banks, the clearness
of its stream, the gentleness of its current and the abundance of
its crystal waters; and the pleasant view revived a thousand tender
thoughts in his mind. Above all, he dwelt upon what he had seen in the
cave of Montesinos; for though Master Pedro's ape had told him that of
those things part was true, part false, he clung more to their truth
than to their falsehood, the very reverse of Sancho, who held them all
to be downright lies.

As they were thus proceeding, then, they discovered a small boat,
without oars or any other gear, that lay at the water's edge tied to
the stem of a tree growing on the bank. Don Quixote looked all
round, and seeing nobody, at once, without more ado, dismounted from
Rocinante and bade Sancho get down from Dapple and tie both beasts
securely to the trunk of a poplar or willow that stood there. Sancho
asked him the reason of this sudden dismounting and tying. Don Quixote
made answer, "Thou must know, Sancho, that this bark is plainly, and
without the possibility of any alternative, calling and inviting me to
enter it, and in it go to give aid to some knight or other person of
distinction in need of it, who is no doubt in some sore strait; for
this is the way of the books of chivalry and of the enchanters who
figure and speak in them. When a knight is involved in some difficulty
from which he cannot be delivered save by the hand of another
knight, though they may be at a distance of two or three thousand
leagues or more one from the other, they either take him up on a
cloud, or they provide a bark for him to get into, and in less than
the twinkling of an eye they carry him where they will and where his
help is required; and so, Sancho, this bark is placed here for the
same purpose; this is as true as that it is now day, and ere this
one passes tie Dapple and Rocinante together, and then in God's hand
be it to guide us; for I would not hold back from embarking, though
barefooted friars were to beg me."

"As that's the case," said Sancho, "and your worship chooses to give
in to these- I don't know if I may call them absurdities- at every
turn, there's nothing for it but to obey and bow the head, bearing
in mind the proverb, 'Do as thy master bids thee, and sit down to
table with him;' but for all that, for the sake of easing my
conscience, I warn your worship that it is my opinion this bark is
no enchanted one, but belongs to some of the fishermen of the river,
for they catch the best shad in the world here."

As Sancho said this, he tied the beasts, leaving them to the care
and protection of the enchanters with sorrow enough in his heart.
Don Quixote bade him not be uneasy about deserting the animals, "for
he who would carry themselves over such longinquous roads and
regions would take care to feed them."

"I don't understand that logiquous," said Sancho, "nor have I ever
heard the word all the days of my life."

"Longinquous," replied Don Quixote, "means far off; but it is no
wonder thou dost not understand it, for thou art not bound to know
Latin, like some who pretend to know it and don't."

"Now they are tied," said Sancho; "what are we to do next?"

"What?" said Don Quixote, "cross ourselves and weigh anchor; I mean,
embark and cut the moorings by which the bark is held;" and the bark
began to drift away slowly from the bank. But when Sancho saw
himself somewhere about two yards out in the river, he began to
tremble and give himself up for lost; but nothing distressed him
more than hearing Dapple bray and seeing Rocinante struggling to get
loose, and said he to his master, "Dapple is braying in grief at our
leaving him, and Rocinante is trying to escape and plunge in after us.
O dear friends, peace be with you, and may this madness that is taking
us away from you, turned into sober sense, bring us back to you."
And with this he fell weeping so bitterly, that Don Quixote said to
him, sharply and angrily, "What art thou afraid of, cowardly creature?
What art thou weeping at, heart of butter-paste? Who pursues or
molests thee, thou soul of a tame mouse? What dost thou want,
unsatisfied in the very heart of abundance? Art thou, perchance,
tramping barefoot over the Riphaean mountains, instead of being seated
on a bench like an archduke on the tranquil stream of this pleasant
river, from which in a short space we shall come out upon the broad
sea? But we must have already emerged and gone seven hundred or
eight hundred leagues; and if I had here an astrolabe to take the
altitude of the pole, I could tell thee how many we have travelled,
though either I know little, or we have already crossed or shall
shortly cross the equinoctial line which parts the two opposite
poles midway."

"And when we come to that line your worship speaks of," said Sancho,
"how far shall we have gone?"

"Very far," said Don Quixote, "for of the three hundred and sixty
degrees that this terraqueous globe contains, as computed by
Ptolemy, the greatest cosmographer known, we shall have travelled
one-half when we come to the line I spoke of."

"By God," said Sancho, "your worship gives me a nice authority for
what you say, putrid Dolly something transmogrified, or whatever it

Don Quixote laughed at the interpretation Sancho put upon
"computed," and the name of the cosmographer Ptolemy, and said he,
"Thou must know, Sancho, that with the Spaniards and those who
embark at Cadiz for the East Indies, one of the signs they have to
show them when they have passed the equinoctial line I told thee of,
is, that the lice die upon everybody on board the ship, and not a
single one is left, or to be found in the whole vessel if they gave
its weight in gold for it; so, Sancho, thou mayest as well pass thy
hand down thy thigh, and if thou comest upon anything alive we shall
be no longer in doubt; if not, then we have crossed."

"I don't believe a bit of it," said Sancho; "still, I'll do as
your worship bids me; though I don't know what need there is for
trying these experiments, for I can see with my own eyes that we
have not moved five yards away from the bank, or shifted two yards
from where the animals stand, for there are Rocinante and Dapple in
the very same place where we left them; and watching a point, as I
do now, I swear by all that's good, we are not stirring or moving at
the pace of an ant."

"Try the test I told thee of, Sancho," said Don Quixote, "and
don't mind any other, for thou knowest nothing about colures, lines,
parallels, zodiacs, ecliptics, poles, solstices, equinoxes, planets,
signs, bearings, the measures of which the celestial and terrestrial
spheres are composed; if thou wert acquainted with all these things,
or any portion of them, thou wouldst see clearly how many parallels we
have cut, what signs we have seen, and what constellations we have
left behind and are now leaving behind. But again I tell thee, feel
and hunt, for I am certain thou art cleaner than a sheet of smooth
white paper."

Sancho felt, and passing his hand gently and carefully down to the
hollow of his left knee, he looked up at his master and said,
"Either the test is a false one, or we have not come to where your
worship says, nor within many leagues of it."

"Why, how so?" asked Don Quixote; "hast thou come upon aught?"

"Ay, and aughts," replied Sancho; and shaking his fingers he
washed his whole hand in the river along which the boat was quietly
gliding in midstream, not moved by any occult intelligence or
invisible enchanter, but simply by the current, just there smooth
and gentle.

They now came in sight of some large water mills that stood in the
middle of the river, and the instant Don Quixote saw them he cried
out, "Seest thou there, my friend? there stands the castle or
fortress, where there is, no doubt, some knight in durance, or
ill-used queen, or infanta, or princess, in whose aid I am brought

"What the devil city, fortress, or castle is your worship talking
about, senor?" said Sancho; "don't you see that those are mills that
stand in the river to grind corn?"

"Hold thy peace, Sancho," said Don Quixote; "though they look like
mills they are not so; I have already told thee that enchantments
transform things and change their proper shapes; I do not mean to
say they really change them from one form into another, but that it
seems as though they did, as experience proved in the transformation
of Dulcinea, sole refuge of my hopes."

By this time, the boat, having reached the middle of the stream,
began to move less slowly than hitherto. The millers belonging to
the mills, when they saw the boat coming down the river, and on the
point of being sucked in by the draught of the wheels, ran out in
haste, several of them, with long poles to stop it, and being all
mealy, with faces and garments covered with flour, they presented a
sinister appearance. They raised loud shouts, crying, "Devils of
men, where are you going to? Are you mad? Do you want to drown
yourselves, or dash yourselves to pieces among these wheels?"

"Did I not tell thee, Sancho," said Don Quixote at this, "that we
had reached the place where I am to show what the might of my arm
can do? See what ruffians and villains come out against me; see what
monsters oppose me; see what hideous countenances come to frighten us!
You shall soon see, scoundrels!" And then standing up in the boat he
began in a loud voice to hurl threats at the millers, exclaiming,
"Ill-conditioned and worse-counselled rabble, restore to liberty and
freedom the person ye hold in durance in this your fortress or prison,
high or low or of whatever rank or quality he be, for I am Don Quixote
of La Mancha, otherwise called the Knight of the Lions, for whom, by
the disposition of heaven above, it is reserved to give a happy
issue to this adventure;" and so saying he drew his sword and began
making passes in the air at the millers, who, hearing but not
understanding all this nonsense, strove to stop the boat, which was
now getting into the rushing channel of the wheels. Sancho fell upon
his knees devoutly appealing to heaven to deliver him from such
imminent peril; which it did by the activity and quickness of the
millers, who, pushing against the boat with their poles, stopped it,
not, however, without upsetting and throwing Don Quixote and Sancho
into the water; and lucky it was for Don Quixote that he could swim
like a goose, though the weight of his armour carried him twice to the
bottom; and had it not been for the millers, who plunged in and
hoisted them both out, it would have been Troy town with the pair of
them. As soon as, more drenched than thirsty, they were landed, Sancho
went down on his knees and with clasped hands and eyes raised to
heaven, prayed a long and fervent prayer to God to deliver him
evermore from the rash projects and attempts of his master. The
fishermen, the owners of the boat, which the mill-wheels had knocked
to pieces, now came up, and seeing it smashed they proceeded to
strip Sancho and to demand payment for it from Don Quixote; but he
with great calmness, just as if nothing had happened him, told the
millers and fishermen that he would pay for the bark most
cheerfully, on condition that they delivered up to him, free and
unhurt, the person or persons that were in durance in that castle of

"What persons or what castle art thou talking of, madman? Art thou
for carrying off the people who come to grind corn in these mills?"

"That's enough," said Don Quixote to himself, "it would be preaching
in the desert to attempt by entreaties to induce this rabble to do any
virtuous action. In this adventure two mighty enchanters must have
encountered one another, and one frustrates what the other attempts;
one provided the bark for me, and the other upset me; God help us,
this world is all machinations and schemes at cross purposes one
with the other. I can do no more." And then turning towards the
mills he said aloud, "Friends, whoe'er ye be that are immured in
that prison, forgive me that, to my misfortune and yours, I cannot
deliver you from your misery; this adventure is doubtless reserved and
destined for some other knight."

So saying he settled with the fishermen, and paid fifty reals for
the boat, which Sancho handed to them very much against the grain,
saying, "With a couple more bark businesses like this we shall have
sunk our whole capital."

The fishermen and the millers stood staring in amazement at the
two figures, so very different to all appearance from ordinary men,
and were wholly unable to make out the drift of the observations and
questions Don Quixote addressed to them; and coming to the
conclusion that they were madmen, they left them and betook
themselves, the millers to their mills, and the fishermen to their
huts. Don Quixote and Sancho returned to their beasts, and to their
life of beasts, and so ended the adventure of the enchanted bark.



They reached their beasts in low spirits and bad humour enough,
knight and squire, Sancho particularly, for with him what touched
the stock of money touched his heart, and when any was taken from
him he felt as if he was robbed of the apples of his eyes. In fine,
without exchanging a word, they mounted and quitted the famous
river, Don Quixote absorbed in thoughts of his love, Sancho in
thinking of his advancement, which just then, it seemed to him, he was
very far from securing; for, fool as he was, he saw clearly enough
that his master's acts were all or most of them utterly senseless; and
he began to cast about for an opportunity of retiring from his service
and going home some day, without entering into any explanations or
taking any farewell of him. Fortune, however, ordered matters after
a fashion very much the opposite of what he contemplated.

It so happened that the next day towards sunset, on coming out of
a wood, Don Quixote cast his eyes over a green meadow, and at the
far end of it observed some people, and as he drew nearer saw that
it was a hawking party. Coming closer, he distinguished among them a
lady of graceful mien, on a pure white palfrey or hackney
caparisoned with green trappings and a silver-mounted side-saddle. The
lady was also in green, and so richly and splendidly dressed that
splendour itself seemed personified in her. On her left hand she
bore a hawk, a proof to Don Quixote's mind that she must be some great
lady and the mistress of the whole hunting party, which was the
fact; so he said to Sancho, "Run Sancho, my son, and say to that
lady on the palfrey with the hawk that I, the Knight of the Lions,
kiss the hands of her exalted beauty, and if her excellence will grant
me leave I will go and kiss them in person and place myself at her
service for aught that may be in my power and her highness may
command; and mind, Sancho, how thou speakest, and take care not to
thrust in any of thy proverbs into thy message."

"You've got a likely one here to thrust any in!" said Sancho; "leave
me alone for that! Why, this is not the first time in my life I have
carried messages to high and exalted ladies."

"Except that thou didst carry to the lady Dulcinea," said Don
Quixote, "I know not that thou hast carried any other, at least in
my service."

"That is true," replied Sancho; "but pledges don't distress a good
payer, and in a house where there's plenty supper is soon cooked; I
mean there's no need of telling or warning me about anything; for
I'm ready for everything and know a little of everything."

"That I believe, Sancho," said Don Quixote; "go and good luck to
thee, and God speed thee."

Sancho went off at top speed, forcing Dapple out of his regular
pace, and came to where the fair huntress was standing, and
dismounting knelt before her and said, "Fair lady, that knight that
you see there, the Knight of the Lions by name, is my master, and I am
a squire of his, and at home they call me Sancho Panza. This same
Knight of the Lions, who was called not long since the Knight of the
Rueful Countenance, sends by me to say may it please your highness
to give him leave that, with your permission, approbation, and
consent, he may come and carry out his wishes, which are, as he says
and I believe, to serve your exalted loftiness and beauty; and if
you give it, your ladyship will do a thing which will redound to
your honour, and he will receive a most distinguished favour and

"You have indeed, squire," said the lady, "delivered your message
with all the formalities such messages require; rise up, for it is not
right that the squire of a knight so great as he of the Rueful
Countenance, of whom we have heard a great deal here, should remain on
his knees; rise, my friend, and bid your master welcome to the
services of myself and the duke my husband, in a country house we have

Sancho got up, charmed as much by the beauty of the good lady as
by her high-bred air and her courtesy, but, above all, by what she had
said about having heard of his master, the Knight of the Rueful
Countenance; for if she did not call him Knight of the Lions it was no
doubt because he had so lately taken the name. "Tell me, brother
squire," asked the duchess (whose title, however, is not known), "this
master of yours, is he not one of whom there is a history extant in
print, called 'The Ingenious Gentleman, Don Quixote of La Mancha,' who
has for the lady of his heart a certain Dulcinea del Toboso?"

"He is the same, senora," replied Sancho; "and that squire of his
who figures, or ought to figure, in the said history under the name of
Sancho Panza, is myself, unless they have changed me in the cradle,
I mean in the press."

"I am rejoiced at all this," said the duchess; "go, brother Panza,
and tell your master that he is welcome to my estate, and that nothing
could happen me that could give me greater pleasure."

Sancho returned to his master mightily pleased with this
gratifying answer, and told him all the great lady had said to him,
lauding to the skies, in his rustic phrase, her rare beauty, her
graceful gaiety, and her courtesy. Don Quixote drew himself up briskly
in his saddle, fixed himself in his stirrups, settled his visor,
gave Rocinante the spur, and with an easy bearing advanced to kiss the
hands of the duchess, who, having sent to summon the duke her husband,
told him while Don Quixote was approaching all about the message;
and as both of them had read the First Part of this history, and
from it were aware of Don Quixote's crazy turn, they awaited him
with the greatest delight and anxiety to make his acquaintance,
meaning to fall in with his humour and agree with everything he
said, and, so long as he stayed with them, to treat him as a
knight-errant, with all the ceremonies usual in the books of
chivalry they had read, for they themselves were very fond of them.

Don Quixote now came up with his visor raised, and as he seemed
about to dismount Sancho made haste to go and hold his stirrup for
him; but in getting down off Dapple he was so unlucky as to hitch
his foot in one of the ropes of the pack-saddle in such a way that
he was unable to free it, and was left hanging by it with his face and
breast on the ground. Don Quixote, who was not used to dismount
without having the stirrup held, fancying that Sancho had by this time
come to hold it for him, threw himself off with a lurch and brought
Rocinante's saddle after him, which was no doubt badly girthed, and
saddle and he both came to the ground; not without discomfiture to him
and abundant curses muttered between his teeth against the unlucky
Sancho, who had his foot still in the shackles. The duke ordered his
huntsmen to go to the help of knight and squire, and they raised Don
Quixote, sorely shaken by his fall; and he, limping, advanced as
best he could to kneel before the noble pair. This, however, the
duke would by no means permit; on the contrary, dismounting from his
horse, he went and embraced Don Quixote, saying, "I am grieved, Sir
Knight of the Rueful Countenance, that your first experience on my
ground should have been such an unfortunate one as we have seen; but
the carelessness of squires is often the cause of worse accidents."

"That which has happened me in meeting you, mighty prince,"
replied Don Quixote, "cannot be unfortunate, even if my fall had not
stopped short of the depths of the bottomless pit, for the glory of
having seen you would have lifted me up and delivered me from it. My
squire, God's curse upon him, is better at unloosing his tongue in
talking impertinence than in tightening the girths of a saddle to keep
it steady; but however I may be, allen or raised up, on foot or on
horseback, I shall always be at your service and that of my lady the
duchess, your worthy consort, worthy queen of beauty and paramount
princess of courtesy."

"Gently, Senor Don Quixote of La Mancha," said the duke; "where my
lady Dona Dulcinea del Toboso is, it is not right that other
beauties should he praised."

Sancho, by this time released from his entanglement, was standing
by, and before his master could answer he said, "There is no
denying, and it must be maintained, that my lady Dulcinea del Toboso
is very beautiful; but the hare jumps up where one least expects it;
and I have heard say that what we call nature is like a potter that
makes vessels of clay, and he who makes one fair vessel can as well
make two, or three, or a hundred; I say so because, by my faith, my
lady the duchess is in no way behind my mistress the lady Dulcinea del

Don Quixote turned to the duchess and said, "Your highness may
conceive that never had knight-errant in this world a more talkative
or a droller squire than I have, and he will prove the truth of what I
say, if your highness is pleased to accept of my services for a few

To which the duchess made answer, "that worthy Sancho is droll I
consider a very good thing, because it is a sign that he is shrewd;
for drollery and sprightliness, Senor Don Quixote, as you very well
know, do not take up their abode with dull wits; and as good Sancho is
droll and sprightly I here set him down as shrewd."

"And talkative," added Don Quixote.

"So much the better," said the duke, "for many droll things cannot
be said in few words; but not to lose time in talking, come, great
Knight of the Rueful Countenance-"

"Of the Lions, your highness must say," said Sancho, "for there is
no Rueful Countenance nor any such character now."

"He of the Lions be it," continued the duke; "I say, let Sir
Knight of the Lions come to a castle of mine close by, where he
shall be given that reception which is due to so exalted a
personage, and which the duchess and I are wont to give to all
knights-errant who come there."

By this time Sancho had fixed and girthed Rocinante's saddle, and
Don Quixote having got on his back and the duke mounted a fine
horse, they placed the duchess in the middle and set out for the
castle. The duchess desired Sancho to come to her side, for she
found infinite enjoyment in listening to his shrewd remarks. Sancho
required no pressing, but pushed himself in between them and the duke,
who thought it rare good fortune to receive such a knight-errant and
such a homely squire in their castle.



Supreme was the satisfaction that Sancho felt at seeing himself,
as it seemed, an established favourite with the duchess, for he looked
forward to finding in her castle what he had found in Don Diego's
house and in Basilio's; he was always fond of good living, and
always seized by the forelock any opportunity of feasting himself
whenever it presented itself. The history informs us, then, that
before they reached the country house or castle, the duke went on in
advance and instructed all his servants how they were to treat Don
Quixote; and so the instant he came up to the castle gates with the
duchess, two lackeys or equerries, clad in what they call morning
gowns of fine crimson satin reaching to their feet, hastened out,
and catching Don Quixote in their arms before he saw or heard them,
said to him, "Your highness should go and take my lady the duchess off
her horse." Don Quixote obeyed, and great bandying of compliments
followed between the two over the matter; but in the end the duchess's
determination carried the day, and she refused to get down or dismount
from her palfrey except in the arms of the duke, saying she did not
consider herself worthy to impose so unnecessary a burden on so
great a knight. At length the duke came out to take her down, and as
they entered a spacious court two fair damsels came forward and
threw over Don Quixote's shoulders a large mantle of the finest
scarlet cloth, and at the same instant all the galleries of the
court were lined with the men-servants and women-servants of the
household, crying, "Welcome, flower and cream of knight-errantry!"
while all or most of them flung pellets filled with scented water over
Don Quixote and the duke and duchess; at all which Don Quixote was
greatly astonished, and this was the first time that he thoroughly
felt and believed himself to be a knight-errant in reality and not
merely in fancy, now that he saw himself treated in the same way as he
had read of such knights being treated in days of yore.

Sancho, deserting Dapple, hung on to the duchess and entered the
castle, but feeling some twinges of conscience at having left the
ass alone, he approached a respectable duenna who had come out with
the rest to receive the duchess, and in a low voice he said to her,
"Senora Gonzalez, or however your grace may be called-"

"I am called Dona Rodriguez de Grijalba," replied the duenna;
"what is your will, brother?" To which Sancho made answer, "I should
be glad if your worship would do me the favour to go out to the castle
gate, where you will find a grey ass of mine; make them, if you
please, put him in the stable, or put him there yourself, for the poor
little beast is rather easily frightened, and cannot bear being
alone at all."

"If the master is as wise as the man," said the duenna, "we have got
a fine bargain. Be off with you, brother, and bad luck to you and
him who brought you here; go, look after your ass, for we, the duennas
of this house, are not used to work of that sort."

"Well then, in troth," returned Sancho, "I have heard my master, who
is the very treasure-finder of stories, telling the story of
Lancelot when he came from Britain, say that ladies waited upon him
and duennas upon his hack; and, if it comes to my ass, I wouldn't
change him for Senor Lancelot's hack."

"If you are a jester, brother," said the duenna, "keep your
drolleries for some place where they'll pass muster and be paid for;
for you'll get nothing from me but a fig."

"At any rate, it will be a very ripe one," said Sancho, "for you
won't lose the trick in years by a point too little."

"Son of a bitch," said the duenna, all aglow with anger, "whether
I'm old or not, it's with God I have to reckon, not with you, you
garlic-stuffed scoundrel!" and she said it so loud, that the duchess
heard it, and turning round and seeing the duenna in such a state of
excitement, and her eyes flaming so, asked whom she was wrangling

"With this good fellow here," said the duenna, "who has particularly
requested me to go and put an ass of his that is at the castle gate
into the stable, holding it up to me as an example that they did the
same I don't know where- that some ladies waited on one Lancelot,
and duennas on his hack; and what is more, to wind up with, he
called me old."

"That," said the duchess, "I should have considered the greatest
affront that could be offered me;" and addressing Sancho, she said
to him, "You must know, friend Sancho, that Dona Rodriguez is very
youthful, and that she wears that hood more for authority and custom
sake than because of her years."

"May all the rest of mine be unlucky," said Sancho, "if I meant it
that way; I only spoke because the affection I have for my ass is so
great, and I thought I could not commend him to a more kind-hearted
person than the lady Dona Rodriguez."

Don Quixote, who was listening, said to him, "Is this proper
conversation for the place, Sancho?"

"Senor," replied Sancho, "every one must mention what he wants
wherever he may be; I thought of Dapple here, and I spoke of him here;
if I had thought of him in the stable I would have spoken there."

On which the duke observed, "Sancho is quite right, and there is
no reason at all to find fault with him; Dapple shall be fed to his
heart's content, and Sancho may rest easy, for he shall be treated
like himself."

While this conversation, amusing to all except Don Quixote, was
proceeding, they ascended the staircase and ushered Don Quixote into a
chamber hung with rich cloth of gold and brocade; six damsels relieved
him of his armour and waited on him like pages, all of them prepared
and instructed by the duke and duchess as to what they were to do, and
how they were to treat Don Quixote, so that he might see and believe
they were treating him like a knight-errant. When his armour was
removed, there stood Don Quixote in his tight-fitting breeches and
chamois doublet, lean, lanky, and long, with cheeks that seemed to
be kissing each other inside; such a figure, that if the damsels
waiting on him had not taken care to check their merriment (which
was one of the particular directions their master and mistress had
given them), they would have burst with laughter. They asked him to
let himself be stripped that they might put a shirt on him, but he
would not on any account, saying that modesty became knights-errant
just as much as valour. However, he said they might give the shirt
to Sancho; and shutting himself in with him in a room where there
was a sumptuous bed, he undressed and put on the shirt; and then,
finding himself alone with Sancho, he said to him, "Tell me, thou
new-fledged buffoon and old booby, dost thou think it right to
offend and insult a duenna so deserving of reverence and respect as
that one just now? Was that a time to bethink thee of thy Dapple, or
are these noble personages likely to let the beasts fare badly when
they treat their owners in such elegant style? For God's sake, Sancho,
restrain thyself, and don't show the thread so as to let them see what
a coarse, boorish texture thou art of. Remember, sinner that thou art,
the master is the more esteemed the more respectable and well-bred his
servants are; and that one of the greatest advantages that princes
have over other men is that they have servants as good as themselves
to wait on them. Dost thou not see- shortsighted being that thou
art, and unlucky mortal that I am!- that if they perceive thee to be a
coarse clown or a dull blockhead, they will suspect me to be some
impostor or swindler? Nay, nay, Sancho friend, keep clear, oh, keep
clear of these stumbling-blocks; for he who falls into the way of
being a chatterbox and droll, drops into a wretched buffoon the
first time he trips; bridle thy tongue, consider and weigh thy words
before they escape thy mouth, and bear in mind we are now in
quarters whence, by God's help, and the strength of my arm, we shall
come forth mightily advanced in fame and fortune."

Sancho promised him with much earnestness to keep his mouth shut,
and to bite off his tongue before he uttered a word that was not
altogether to the purpose and well considered, and told him he might
make his mind easy on that point, for it should never be discovered
through him what they were.

Don Quixote dressed himself, put on his baldric with his sword,
threw the scarlet mantle over his shoulders, placed on his head a
montera of green satin that the damsels had given him, and thus
arrayed passed out into the large room, where he found the damsels
drawn up in double file, the same number on each side, all with the
appliances for washing the hands, which they presented to him with
profuse obeisances and ceremonies. Then came twelve pages, together
with the seneschal, to lead him to dinner, as his hosts were already
waiting for him. They placed him in the midst of them, and with much
pomp and stateliness they conducted him into another room, where there
was a sumptuous table laid with but four covers. The duchess and the
duke came out to the door of the room to receive him, and with them
a grave ecclesiastic, one of those who rule noblemen's houses; one
of those who, not being born magnates themselves, never know how to
teach those who are how to behave as such; one of those who would have
the greatness of great folk measured by their own narrowness of
mind; one of those who, when they try to introduce economy into the
household they rule, lead it into meanness. One of this sort, I say,
must have been the grave churchman who came out with the duke and
duchess to receive Don Quixote.

A vast number of polite speeches were exchanged, and at length,
taking Don Quixote between them, they proceeded to sit down to
table. The duke pressed Don Quixote to take the head of the table,
and, though he refused, the entreaties of the duke were so urgent that
he had to accept it.

The ecclesiastic took his seat opposite to him, and the duke and
duchess those at the sides. All this time Sancho stood by, gaping with
amazement at the honour he saw shown to his master by these
illustrious persons; and observing all the ceremonious pressing that
had passed between the duke and Don Quixote to induce him to take
his seat at the head of the table, he said, "If your worship will give
me leave I will tell you a story of what happened in my village
about this matter of seats."

The moment Sancho said this Don Quixote trembled, making sure that
he was about to say something foolish. Sancho glanced at him, and
guessing his thoughts, said, "Don't be afraid of my going astray,
senor, or saying anything that won't be pat to the purpose; I
haven't forgotten the advice your worship gave me just now about
talking much or little, well or ill."

"I have no recollection of anything, Sancho," said Don Quixote; "say
what thou wilt, only say it quickly."

"Well then," said Sancho, "what I am going to say is so true that my
master Don Quixote, who is here present, will keep me from lying."

"Lie as much as thou wilt for all I care, Sancho," said Don Quixote,
"for I am not going to stop thee, but consider what thou art going
to say."

"I have so considered and reconsidered," said Sancho, "that the
bell-ringer's in a safe berth; as will be seen by what follows."

"It would be well," said Don Quixote, "if your highnesses would
order them to turn out this idiot, for he will talk a heap of

"By the life of the duke, Sancho shall not be taken away from me for
a moment," said the duchess; "I am very fond of him, for I know he
is very discreet."

"Discreet be the days of your holiness," said Sancho, "for the
good opinion you have of my wit, though there's none in me; but the
story I want to tell is this. There was an invitation given by a
gentleman of my town, a very rich one, and one of quality, for he
was one of the Alamos of Medina del Campo, and married to Dona
Mencia de Quinones, the daughter of Don Alonso de Maranon, Knight of
the Order of Santiago, that was drowned at the Herradura- him there
was that quarrel about years ago in our village, that my master Don
Quixote was mixed up in, to the best of my belief, that Tomasillo
the scapegrace, the son of Balbastro the smith, was wounded in.- Isn't
all this true, master mine? As you live, say so, that these gentlefolk
may not take me for some lying chatterer."

"So far," said the ecclesiastic, "I take you to be more a
chatterer than a liar; but I don't know what I shall take you for

"Thou citest so many witnesses and proofs, Sancho," said Don
Quixote, "that I have no choice but to say thou must be telling the
truth; go on, and cut the story short, for thou art taking the way not
to make an end for two days to come."

"He is not to cut it short," said the duchess; "on the contrary, for
my gratification, he is to tell it as he knows it, though he should
not finish it these six days; and if he took so many they would be
to me the pleasantest I ever spent."

"Well then, sirs, I say," continued Sancho, "that this same
gentleman, whom I know as well as I do my own hands, for it's not a
bowshot from my house to his, invited a poor but respectable

"Get on, brother," said the churchman; "at the rate you are going
you will not stop with your story short of the next world."

"I'll stop less than half-way, please God," said Sancho; "and so I
say this labourer, coming to the house of the gentleman I spoke of
that invited him- rest his soul, he is now dead; and more by token
he died the death of an angel, so they say; for I was not there, for
just at that time I had gone to reap at Tembleque-"

"As you live, my son," said the churchman, "make haste back from
Tembleque, and finish your story without burying the gentleman, unless
you want to make more funerals."

"Well then, it so happened," said Sancho, "that as the pair of
them were going to sit down to table -and I think I can see them now
plainer than ever-"

Great was the enjoyment the duke and duchess derived from the
irritation the worthy churchman showed at the long-winded, halting way
Sancho had of telling his story, while Don Quixote was chafing with
rage and vexation.

"So, as I was saying," continued Sancho, "as the pair of them were
going to sit down to table, as I said, the labourer insisted upon
the gentleman's taking the head of the table, and the gentleman
insisted upon the labourer's taking it, as his orders should be obeyed
in his house; but the labourer, who plumed himself on his politeness
and good breeding, would not on any account, until the gentleman,
out of patience, putting his hands on his shoulders, compelled him
by force to sit down, saying, 'Sit down, you stupid lout, for wherever
I sit will he the head to you; and that's the story, and, troth, I
think it hasn't been brought in amiss here."

Don Quixote turned all colours, which, on his sunburnt face, mottled
it till it looked like jasper. The duke and duchess suppressed their
laughter so as not altogether to mortify Don Quixote, for they saw
through Sancho's impertinence; and to change the conversation, and
keep Sancho from uttering more absurdities, the duchess asked Don
Quixote what news he had of the lady Dulcinea, and if he had sent
her any presents of giants or miscreants lately, for he could not
but have vanquished a good many.

To which Don Quixote replied, "Senora, my misfortunes, though they
had a beginning, will never have an end. I have vanquished giants
and I have sent her caitiffs and miscreants; but where are they to
find her if she is enchanted and turned into the most ill-favoured
peasant wench that can be imagined?"

"I don't know," said Sancho Panza; "to me she seems the fairest
creature in the world; at any rate, in nimbleness and jumping she
won't give in to a tumbler; by my faith, senora duchess, she leaps
from the ground on to the back of an ass like a cat."

"Have you seen her enchanted, Sancho?" asked the duke.

"What, seen her!" said Sancho; "why, who the devil was it but myself
that first thought of the enchantment business? She is as much
enchanted as my father."

The ecclesiastic, when he heard them talking of giants and
caitiffs and enchantments, began to suspect that this must be Don
Quixote of La Mancha, whose story the duke was always reading; and
he had himself often reproved him for it, telling him it was foolish
to read such fooleries; and becoming convinced that his suspicion
was correct, addressing the duke, he said very angrily to him, "Senor,
your excellence will have to give account to God for what this good
man does. This Don Quixote, or Don Simpleton, or whatever his name is,
cannot, I imagine, be such a blockhead as your excellence would have
him, holding out encouragement to him to go on with his vagaries and
follies." Then turning to address Don Quixote he said, "And you,
num-skull, who put it into your head that you are a knight-errant, and
vanquish giants and capture miscreants? Go your ways in a good hour,
and in a good hour be it said to you. Go home and bring up your
children if you have any, and attend to your business, and give over
going wandering about the world, gaping and making a laughing-stock of
yourself to all who know you and all who don't. Where, in heaven's
name, have you discovered that there are or ever were
knights-errant? Where are there giants in Spain or miscreants in La
Mancha, or enchanted Dulcineas, or all the rest of the silly things
they tell about you?"

Don Quixote listened attentively to the reverend gentleman's
words, and as soon as he perceived he had done speaking, regardless of
the presence of the duke and duchess, he sprang to his feet with angry
looks and an agitated countenance, and said -But the reply deserves
a chapter to itself.



Don Quixote, then, having risen to his feet, trembling from head
to foot like a man dosed with mercury, said in a hurried, agitated
voice, "The place I am in, the presence in which I stand, and the
respect I have and always have had for the profession to which your
worship belongs, hold and bind the hands of my just indignation; and
as well for these reasons as because I know, as everyone knows, that a
gownsman's weapon is the same as a woman's, the tongue, I will with
mine engage in equal combat with your worship, from whom one might
have expected good advice instead of foul abuse. Pious, well-meant
reproof requires a different demeanour and arguments of another
sort; at any rate, to have reproved me in public, and so roughly,
exceeds the bounds of proper reproof, for that comes better with
gentleness than with rudeness; and it is not seemly to call the sinner
roundly blockhead and booby, without knowing anything of the sin
that is reproved. Come, tell me, for which of the stupidities you have
observed in me do you condemn and abuse me, and bid me go home and
look after my house and wife and children, without knowing whether I
have any? Is nothing more needed than to get a footing, by hook or
by crook, in other people's houses to rule over the masters (and that,
perhaps, after having been brought up in all the straitness of some
seminary, and without having ever seen more of the world than may
lie within twenty or thirty leagues round), to fit one to lay down the
law rashly for chivalry, and pass judgment on knights-errant? Is it,
haply, an idle occupation, or is the time ill-spent that is spent in
roaming the world in quest, not of its enjoyments, but of those
arduous toils whereby the good mount upwards to the abodes of
everlasting life? If gentlemen, great lords, nobles, men of high
birth, were to rate me as a fool I should take it as an irreparable
insult; but I care not a farthing if clerks who have never entered
upon or trod the paths of chivalry should think me foolish. Knight I
am, and knight I will die, if such be the pleasure of the Most High.
Some take the broad road of overweening ambition; others that of
mean and servile flattery; others that of deceitful hypocrisy, and
some that of true religion; but I, led by my star, follow the narrow
path of knight-errantry, and in pursuit of that calling I despise
wealth, but not honour. I have redressed injuries, righted wrongs,
punished insolences, vanquished giants, and crushed monsters; I am
in love, for no other reason than that it is incumbent on
knights-errant to be so; but though I am, I am no carnal-minded lover,
but one of the chaste, platonic sort. My intentions are always
directed to worthy ends, to do good to all and evil to none; and if he
who means this, does this, and makes this his practice deserves to
be called a fool, it is for your highnesses to say, O most excellent
duke and duchess."

"Good, by God!" cried Sancho; "say no more in your own defence,
master mine, for there's nothing more in the world to be said,
thought, or insisted on; and besides, when this gentleman denies, as
he has, that there are or ever have been any knights-errant in the
world, is it any wonder if he knows nothing of what he has been
talking about?"

"Perhaps, brother," said the ecclesiastic, "you are that Sancho
Panza that is mentioned, to whom your master has promised an island?"

"Yes, I am," said Sancho, "and what's more, I am one who deserves it
as much as anyone; I am one of the sort- 'Attach thyself to the
good, and thou wilt be one of them,' and of those, 'Not with whom thou
art bred, but with whom thou art fed,' and of those, 'Who leans
against a good tree, a good shade covers him;' I have leant upon a
good master, and I have been for months going about with him, and
please God I shall be just such another; long life to him and long
life to me, for neither will he be in any want of empires to rule,
or I of islands to govern."

"No, Sancho my friend, certainly not," said the duke, "for in the
name of Senor Don Quixote I confer upon you the government of one of
no small importance that I have at my disposal."

"Go down on thy knees, Sancho," said Don Quixote, "and kiss the feet
of his excellence for the favour he has bestowed upon thee."

Sancho obeyed, and on seeing this the ecclesiastic stood up from
table completely out of temper, exclaiming, "By the gown I wear, I
am almost inclined to say that your excellence is as great a fool as
these sinners. No wonder they are mad, when people who are in their
senses sanction their madness! I leave your excellence with them,
for so long as they are in the house, I will remain in my own, and
spare myself the trouble of reproving what I cannot remedy;" and
without uttering another word, or eating another morsel, he went
off, the entreaties of the duke and duchess being entirely
unavailing to stop him; not that the duke said much to him, for he
could not, because of the laughter his uncalled-for anger provoked.

When he had done laughing, he said to Don Quixote, "You have replied
on your own behalf so stoutly, Sir Knight of the Lions, that there
is no occasion to seek further satisfaction for this, which, though it
may look like an offence, is not so at all, for, as women can give
no offence, no more can ecclesiastics, as you very well know."

"That is true," said Don Quixote, "and the reason is, that he who is
not liable to offence cannot give offence to anyone. Women,
children, and ecclesiastics, as they cannot defend themselves,
though they may receive offence cannot be insulted, because between
the offence and the insult there is, as your excellence very well
knows, this difference: the insult comes from one who is capable of
offering it, and does so, and maintains it; the offence may come
from any quarter without carrying insult. To take an example: a man is
standing unsuspectingly in the street and ten others come up armed and
beat him; he draws his sword and quits himself like a man, but the
number of his antagonists makes it impossible for him to effect his
purpose and avenge himself; this man suffers an offence but not an
insult. Another example will make the same thing plain: a man is
standing with his back turned, another comes up and strikes him, and
after striking him takes to flight, without waiting an instant, and
the other pursues him but does not overtake him; he who received the
blow received an offence, but not an insult, because an insult must be
maintained. If he who struck him, though he did so sneakingly and
treacherously, had drawn his sword and stood and faced him, then he
who had been struck would have received offence and insult at the same
time; offence because he was struck treacherously, insult because he
who struck him maintained what he had done, standing his ground
without taking to flight. And so, according to the laws of the
accursed duel, I may have received offence, but not insult, for
neither women nor children can maintain it, nor can they wound, nor
have they any way of standing their ground, and it is just the same
with those connected with religion; for these three sorts of persons
are without arms offensive or defensive, and so, though naturally they
are bound to defend themselves, they have no right to offend
anybody; and though I said just now I might have received offence, I
say now certainly not, for he who cannot receive an insult can still
less give one; for which reasons I ought not to feel, nor do I feel,
aggrieved at what that good man said to me; I only wish he had
stayed a little longer, that I might have shown him the mistake he
makes in supposing and maintaining that there are not and never have
been any knights-errant in the world; had Amadis or any of his
countless descendants heard him say as much, I am sure it would not
have gone well with his worship."

"I will take my oath of that," said Sancho; "they would have given
him a slash that would have slit him down from top to toe like a
pomegranate or a ripe melon; they were likely fellows to put up with
jokes of that sort! By my faith, I'm certain if Reinaldos of Montalvan
had heard the little man's words he would have given him such a
spank on the mouth that he wouldn't have spoken for the next three
years; ay, let him tackle them, and he'll see how he'll get out of
their hands!"

The duchess, as she listened to Sancho, was ready to die with
laughter, and in her own mind she set him down as droller and madder
than his master; and there were a good many just then who were of
the same opinion.

Don Quixote finally grew calm, and dinner came to an end, and as the
cloth was removed four damsels came in, one of them with a silver
basin, another with a jug also of silver, a third with two fine
white towels on her shoulder, and the fourth with her arms bared to
the elbows, and in her white hands (for white they certainly were) a
round ball of Naples soap. The one with the basin approached, and with
arch composure and impudence, thrust it under Don Quixote's chin, who,
wondering at such a ceremony, said never a word, supposing it to be
the custom of that country to wash beards instead of hands; he
therefore stretched his out as far as he could, and at the same
instant the jug began to pour and the damsel with the soap rubbed
his beard briskly, raising snow-flakes, for the soap lather was no
less white, not only over the beard, but all over the face, and over
the eyes of the submissive knight, so that they were perforce
obliged to keep shut. The duke and duchess, who had not known anything
about this, waited to see what came of this strange washing. The
barber damsel, when she had him a hand's breadth deep in lather,
pretended that there was no more water, and bade the one with the
jug go and fetch some, while Senor Don Quixote waited. She did so, and
Don Quixote was left the strangest and most ludicrous figure that
could be imagined. All those present, and there were a good many, were
watching him, and as they saw him there with half a yard of neck,
and that uncommonly brown, his eyes shut, and his beard full of
soap, it was a great wonder, and only by great discretion, that they
were able to restrain their laughter. The damsels, the concocters of
the joke, kept their eyes down, not daring to look at their master and
mistress; and as for them, laughter and anger struggled within them,
and they knew not what to do, whether to punish the audacity of the
girls, or to reward them for the amusement they had received from
seeing Don Quixote in such a plight.

At length the damsel with the jug returned and they made an end of
washing Don Quixote, and the one who carried the towels very
deliberately wiped him and dried him; and all four together making him
a profound obeisance and curtsey, they were about to go, when the
duke, lest Don Quixote should see through the joke, called out to
the one with the basin saying, "Come and wash me, and take care that
there is water enough." The girl, sharp-witted and prompt, came and
placed the basin for the duke as she had done for Don Quixote, and
they soon had him well soaped and washed, and having wiped him dry
they made their obeisance and retired. It appeared afterwards that the
duke had sworn that if they had not washed him as they had Don Quixote
he would have punished them for their impudence, which they adroitly
atoned for by soaping him as well.

Sancho observed the ceremony of the washing very attentively, and
said to himself, "God bless me, if it were only the custom in this
country to wash squires' beards too as well as knights'. For by God
and upon my soul I want it badly; and if they gave me a scrape of
the razor besides I'd take it as a still greater kindness."

"What are you saying to yourself, Sancho?" asked the duchess.

"I was saying, senora," he replied, "that in the courts of other
princes, when the cloth is taken away, I have always heard say they
give water for the hands, but not lye for the beard; and that shows it
is good to live long that you may see much; to be sure, they say too
that he who lives a long life must undergo much evil, though to
undergo a washing of that sort is pleasure rather than pain."

"Don't be uneasy, friend Sancho," said the duchess; "I will take
care that my damsels wash you, and even put you in the tub if

"I'll be content with the beard," said Sancho, "at any rate for
the present; and as for the future, God has decreed what is to be."

"Attend to worthy Sancho's request, seneschal," said the duchess,
"and do exactly what he wishes."

The seneschal replied that Senor Sancho should be obeyed in
everything; and with that he went away to dinner and took Sancho along
with him, while the duke and duchess and Don Quixote remained at table
discussing a great variety of things, but all bearing on the calling
of arms and knight-errantry.

The duchess begged Don Quixote, as he seemed to have a retentive
memory, to describe and portray to her the beauty and features of
the lady Dulcinea del Toboso, for, judging by what fame trumpeted
abroad of her beauty, she felt sure she must be the fairest creature
in the world, nay, in all La Mancha.

Don Quixote sighed on hearing the duchess's request, and said, "If I
could pluck out my heart, and lay it on a plate on this table here
before your highness's eyes, it would spare my tongue the pain of
telling what can hardly be thought of, for in it your excellence would
see her portrayed in full. But why should I attempt to depict and
describe in detail, and feature by feature, the beauty of the peerless
Dulcinea, the burden being one worthy of other shoulders than mine, an
enterprise wherein the pencils of Parrhasius, Timantes, and Apelles,
and the graver of Lysippus ought to be employed, to paint it in
pictures and carve it in marble and bronze, and Ciceronian and
Demosthenian eloquence to sound its praises?"

"What does Demosthenian mean, Senor Don Quixote?" said the
duchess; "it is a word I never heard in all my life."

"Demosthenian eloquence," said Don Quixote, "means the eloquence
of Demosthenes, as Ciceronian means that of Cicero, who were the two
most eloquent orators in the world."

"True," said the duke; "you must have lost your wits to ask such a
question. Nevertheless, Senor Don Quixote would greatly gratify us
if he would depict her to us; for never fear, even in an outline or
sketch she will be something to make the fairest envious."

"I would do so certainly," said Don Quixote, "had she not been
blurred to my mind's eye by the misfortune that fell upon her a
short time since, one of such a nature that I am more ready to weep
over it than to describe it. For your highnesses must know that, going
a few days back to kiss her hands and receive her benediction,
approbation, and permission for this third sally, I found her
altogether a different being from the one I sought; I found her
enchanted and changed from a princess into a peasant, from fair to
foul, from an angel into a devil, from fragrant to pestiferous, from
refined to clownish, from a dignified lady into a jumping tomboy, and,
in a word, from Dulcinea del Toboso into a coarse Sayago wench."

"God bless me!" said the duke aloud at this, "who can have done
the world such an injury? Who can have robbed it of the beauty that
gladdened it, of the grace and gaiety that charmed it, of the
modesty that shed a lustre upon it?"

"Who?" replied Don Quixote; "who could it be but some malignant
enchanter of the many that persecute me out of envy- that accursed
race born into the world to obscure and bring to naught the
achievements of the good, and glorify and exalt the deeds of the
wicked? Enchanters have persecuted me, enchanters persecute me
still, and enchanters will continue to persecute me until they have
sunk me and my lofty chivalry in the deep abyss of oblivion; and
they injure and wound me where they know I feel it most. For to
deprive a knight-errant of his lady is to deprive him of the eyes he
sees with, of the sun that gives him light, of the food whereby he
lives. Many a time before have I said it, and I say it now once
more, a knight-errant without a lady is like a tree without leaves,
a building without a foundation, or a shadow without the body that
causes it."

"There is no denying it," said the duchess; "but still, if we are to
believe the history of Don Quixote that has come out here lately
with general applause, it is to be inferred from it, if I mistake not,
that you never saw the lady Dulcinea, and that the said lady is
nothing in the world but an imaginary lady, one that you yourself
begot and gave birth to in your brain, and adorned with whatever
charms and perfections you chose."

"There is a good deal to be said on that point," said Don Quixote;
"God knows whether there he any Dulcinea or not in the world, or
whether she is imaginary or not imaginary; these are things the
proof of which must not be pushed to extreme lengths. I have not
begotten nor given birth to my lady, though I behold her as she
needs must be, a lady who contains in herself all the qualities to
make her famous throughout the world, beautiful without blemish,
dignified without haughtiness, tender and yet modest, gracious from
courtesy and courteous from good breeding, and lastly, of exalted
lineage, because beauty shines forth and excels with a higher degree
of perfection upon good blood than in the fair of lowly birth."

"That is true," said the duke; "but Senor Don Quixote will give me
leave to say what I am constrained to say by the story of his exploits
that I have read, from which it is to be inferred that, granting there
is a Dulcinea in El Toboso, or out of it, and that she is in the
highest degree beautiful as you have described her to us, as regards
the loftiness of her lineage she is not on a par with the Orianas,
Alastrajareas, Madasimas, or others of that sort, with whom, as you
well know, the histories abound."

"To that I may reply," said Don Quixote, "that Dulcinea is the
daughter of her own works, and that virtues rectify blood, and that
lowly virtue is more to be regarded and esteemed than exalted vice.
Dulcinea, besides, has that within her that may raise her to be a
crowned and sceptred queen; for the merit of a fair and virtuous woman
is capable of performing greater miracles; and virtually, though not
formally, she has in herself higher fortunes."

"I protest, Senor Don Quixote," said the duchess, "that in all you
say, you go most cautiously and lead in hand, as the saying is;
henceforth I will believe myself, and I will take care that everyone
in my house believes, even my lord the duke if needs be, that there is
a Dulcinea in El Toboso, and that she is living to-day, and that she
is beautiful and nobly born and deserves to have such a knight as
Senor Don Quixote in her service, and that is the highest praise
that it is in my power to give her or that I can think of. But I
cannot help entertaining a doubt, and having a certain grudge
against Sancho Panza; the doubt is this, that the aforesaid history
declares that the said Sancho Panza, when he carried a letter on
your worship's behalf to the said lady Dulcinea, found her sifting a
sack of wheat; and more by token it says it was red wheat; a thing
which makes me doubt the loftiness of her lineage."

To this Don Quixote made answer, "Senora, your highness must know
that everything or almost everything that happens me transcends the
ordinary limits of what happens to other knights-errant; whether it he
that it is directed by the inscrutable will of destiny, or by the
malice of some jealous enchanter. Now it is an established fact that
all or most famous knights-errant have some special gift, one that
of being proof against enchantment, another that of being made of such
invulnerable flesh that he cannot be wounded, as was the famous
Roland, one of the twelve peers of France, of whom it is related
that he could not be wounded except in the sole of his left foot,
and that it must be with the point of a stout pin and not with any
other sort of weapon whatever; and so, when Bernardo del Carpio slew
him at Roncesvalles, finding that he could not wound him with steel,
he lifted him up from the ground in his arms and strangled him,
calling to mind seasonably the death which Hercules inflicted on
Antaeus, the fierce giant that they say was the son of Terra. I
would infer from what I have mentioned that perhaps I may have some
gift of this kind, not that of being invulnerable, because
experience has many times proved to me that I am of tender flesh and
not at all impenetrable; nor that of being proof against
enchantment, for I have already seen myself thrust into a cage, in
which all the world would not have been able to confine me except by
force of enchantments. But as I delivered myself from that one, I am
inclined to believe that there is no other that can hurt me; and so,
these enchanters, seeing that they cannot exert their vile craft
against my person, revenge themselves on what I love most, and seek to
rob me of life by maltreating that of Dulcinea in whom I live; and
therefore I am convinced that when my squire carried my message to
her, they changed her into a common peasant girl, engaged in such a
mean occupation as sifting wheat; I have already said, however, that
that wheat was not red wheat, nor wheat at all, but grains of orient
pearl. And as a proof of all this, I must tell your highnesses that,
coming to El Toboso a short time back, I was altogether unable to
discover the palace of Dulcinea; and that the next day, though Sancho,
my squire, saw her in her own proper shape, which is the fairest in
the world, to me she appeared to be a coarse, ill-favoured farm-wench,
and by no means a well-spoken one, she who is propriety itself. And
so, as I am not and, so far as one can judge, cannot be enchanted, she
it is that is enchanted, that is smitten, that is altered, changed,
and transformed; in her have my enemies revenged themselves upon me,
and for her shall I live in ceaseless tears, until I see her in her
pristine state. I have mentioned this lest anybody should mind what
Sancho said about Dulcinea's winnowing or sifting; for, as they
changed her to me, it is no wonder if they changed her to him.
Dulcinea is illustrious and well-born, and of one of the gentle
families of El Toboso, which are many, ancient, and good. Therein,
most assuredly, not small is the share of the peerless Dulcinea,
through whom her town will be famous and celebrated in ages to come,
as Troy was through Helen, and Spain through La Cava, though with a
better title and tradition. For another thing; I would have your
graces understand that Sancho Panza is one of the drollest squires
that ever served knight-errant; sometimes there is a simplicity
about him so acute that it is an amusement to try and make out whether
he is simple or sharp; he has mischievous tricks that stamp him rogue,
and blundering ways that prove him a booby; he doubts everything and
believes everything; when I fancy he is on the point of coming down
headlong from sheer stupidity, he comes out with something shrewd that
sends him up to the skies. After all, I would not exchange him for
another squire, though I were given a city to boot, and therefore I am
in doubt whether it will be well to send him to the government your
highness has bestowed upon him; though I perceive in him a certain
aptitude for the work of governing, so that, with a little trimming of
his understanding, he would manage any government as easily as the
king does his taxes; and moreover, we know already ample experience
that it does not require much cleverness or much learning to be a
governor, for there are a hundred round about us that scarcely know
how to read, and govern like gerfalcons. The main point is that they
should have good intentions and be desirous of doing right in all
things, for they will never be at a loss for persons to advise and
direct them in what they have to do, like those knight-governors
who, being no lawyers, pronounce sentences with the aid of an
assessor. My advice to him will be to take no bribe and surrender no
right, and I have some other little matters in reserve, that shall
be produced in due season for Sancho's benefit and the advantage of
the island he is to govern."

The duke, duchess, and Don Quixote had reached this point in their
conversation, when they heard voices and a great hubbub in the palace,
and Sancho burst abruptly into the room all glowing with anger, with a
straining-cloth by way of a bib, and followed by several servants, or,
more properly speaking, kitchen-boys and other underlings, one of whom
carried a small trough full of water, that from its colour and
impurity was plainly dishwater. The one with the trough pursued him
and followed him everywhere he went, endeavouring with the utmost
persistence to thrust it under his chin, while another kitchen-boy
seemed anxious to wash his beard.

"What is all this, brothers?" asked the duchess. "What is it? What
do you want to do to this good man? Do you forget he is a

To which the barber kitchen-boy replied, "The gentleman will not let
himself be washed as is customary, and as my lord the and the senor
his master have been."

"Yes, I will," said Sancho, in a great rage; "but I'd like it to
be with cleaner towels, clearer lye, and not such dirty hands; for
there's not so much difference between me and my master that he should
be washed with angels' water and I with devil's lye. The customs of
countries and princes' palaces are only good so long as they give no
annoyance; but the way of washing they have here is worse than doing
penance. I have a clean beard, and I don't require to be refreshed
in that fashion, and whoever comes to wash me or touch a hair of my
head, I mean to say my beard, with all due respect be it said, I'll
give him a punch that will leave my fist sunk in his skull; for
cirimonies and soapings of this sort are more like jokes than the
polite attentions of one's host."

The duchess was ready to die with laughter when she saw Sancho's
rage and heard his words; but it was no pleasure to Don Quixote to see
him in such a sorry trim, with the dingy towel about him, and the
hangers-on of the kitchen all round him; so making a low bow to the
duke and duchess, as if to ask their permission to speak, he addressed
the rout in a dignified tone: "Holloa, gentlemen! you let that youth
alone, and go back to where you came from, or anywhere else if you
like; my squire is as clean as any other person, and those troughs are
as bad as narrow thin-necked jars to him; take my advice and leave him
alone, for neither he nor I understand joking."

Sancho took the word out of his mouth and went on, "Nay, let them
come and try their jokes on the country bumpkin, for it's about as
likely I'll stand them as that it's now midnight! Let them bring me
a comb here, or what they please, and curry this beard of mine, and if
they get anything out of it that offends against cleanliness, let them
clip me to the skin."

Upon this, the duchess, laughing all the while, said, "Sancho
Panza is right, and always will be in all he says; he is clean, and,
as he says himself, he does not require to be washed; and if our
ways do not please him, he is free to choose. Besides, you promoters
of cleanliness have been excessively careless and thoughtless, I don't
know if I ought not to say audacious, to bring troughs and wooden
utensils and kitchen dishclouts, instead of basins and jugs of pure
gold and towels of holland, to such a person and such a beard; but,
after all, you are ill-conditioned and ill-bred, and spiteful as you
are, you cannot help showing the grudge you have against the squires
of knights-errant."

The impudent servitors, and even the seneschal who came with them,
took the duchess to be speaking in earnest, so they removed the
straining-cloth from Sancho's neck, and with something like shame
and confusion of face went off all of them and left him; whereupon he,
seeing himself safe out of that extreme danger, as it seemed to him,
ran and fell on his knees before the duchess, saying, "From great
ladies great favours may be looked for; this which your grace has done
me today cannot be requited with less than wishing I was dubbed a
knight-errant, to devote myself all the days of my life to the service
of so exalted a lady. I am a labouring man, my name is Sancho Panza, I
am married, I have children, and I am serving as a squire; if in any
one of these ways I can serve your highness, I will not he longer in
obeying than your grace in commanding."

"It is easy to see, Sancho," replied the duchess, "that you have
learned to he polite in the school of politeness itself; I mean to say
it is easy to see that you have been nursed in the bosom of Senor
Don Quixote, who is, of course, the cream of good breeding and
flower of ceremony- or cirimony, as you would say yourself. Fair be
the fortunes of such a master and such a servant, the one the cynosure
of knight-errantry, the other the star of squirely fidelity! Rise,
Sancho, my friend; I will repay your courtesy by taking care that my
lord the duke makes good to you the promised gift of the government as
soon as possible."

With this, the conversation came to an end, and Don Quixote
retired to take his midday sleep; but the duchess begged Sancho,
unless he had a very great desire to go to sleep, to come and spend
the afternoon with her and her damsels in a very cool chamber.
Sancho replied that, though he certainly had the habit of sleeping
four or five hours in the heat of the day in summer, to serve her
excellence he would try with all his might not to sleep even one
that day, and that he would come in obedience to her command, and with
that he went off. The duke gave fresh orders with respect to
treating Don Quixote as a knight-errant, without departing even in
smallest particular from the style in which, as the stories tell us,
they used to treat the knights of old.



The history records that Sancho did not sleep that afternoon, but in
order to keep his word came, before he had well done dinner, to
visit the duchess, who, finding enjoyment in listening to him, made
him sit down beside her on a low seat, though Sancho, out of pure good
breeding, wanted not to sit down; the duchess, however, told him he
was to sit down as governor and talk as squire, as in both respects he
was worthy of even the chair of the Cid Ruy Diaz the Campeador. Sancho
shrugged his shoulders, obeyed, and sat down, and all the duchess's
damsels and duennas gathered round him, waiting in profound silence to
hear what he would say. It was the duchess, however, who spoke
first, saying:

"Now that we are alone, and that there is nobody here to overhear
us, I should be glad if the senor governor would relieve me of certain
doubts I have, rising out of the history of the great Don Quixote that
is now in print. One is: inasmuch as worthy Sancho never saw Dulcinea,
I mean the lady Dulcinea del Toboso, nor took Don Quixote's letter
to her, for it was left in the memorandum book in the Sierra Morena,
how did he dare to invent the answer and all that about finding her
sifting wheat, the whole story being a deception and falsehood, and so
much to the prejudice of the peerless Dulcinea's good name, a thing
that is not at all becoming the character and fidelity of a good

At these words, Sancho, without uttering one in reply, got up from
his chair, and with noiseless steps, with his body bent and his finger
on his lips, went all round the room lifting up the hangings; and this
done, he came back to his seat and said, "Now, senora, that I have
seen that there is no one except the bystanders listening to us on the
sly, I will answer what you have asked me, and all you may ask me,
without fear or dread. And the first thing I have got to say is,
that for my own part I hold my master Don Quixote to be stark mad,
though sometimes he says things that, to my mind, and indeed
everybody's that listens to him, are so wise, and run in such a
straight furrow, that Satan himself could not have said them better;
but for all that, really, and beyond all question, it's my firm belief
he is cracked. Well, then, as this is clear to my mind, I can
venture to make him believe things that have neither head nor tail,
like that affair of the answer to the letter, and that other of six or
eight days ago, which is not yet in history, that is to say, the
affair of the enchantment of my lady Dulcinea; for I made him
believe she is enchanted, though there's no more truth in it than over
the hills of Ubeda.

The duchess begged him to tell her about the enchantment or
deception, so Sancho told the whole story exactly as it had
happened, and his hearers were not a little amused by it; and then
resuming, the duchess said, "In consequence of what worthy Sancho
has told me, a doubt starts up in my mind, and there comes a kind of
whisper to my ear that says, 'If Don Quixote be mad, crazy, and
cracked, and Sancho Panza his squire knows it, and, notwithstanding,
serves and follows him, and goes trusting to his empty promises, there
can be no doubt he must be still madder and sillier than his master;
and that being so, it will be cast in your teeth, senora duchess, if
you give the said Sancho an island to govern; for how will he who does
not know how to govern himself know how to govern others?'"

"By God, senora," said Sancho, "but that doubt comes timely; but
your grace may say it out, and speak plainly, or as you like; for I
know what you say is true, and if I were wise I should have left my
master long ago; but this was my fate, this was my bad luck; I can't
help it, I must follow him; we're from the same village, I've eaten
his bread, I'm fond of him, I'm grateful, he gave me his ass-colts,
and above all I'm faithful; so it's quite impossible for anything to
separate us, except the pickaxe and shovel. And if your highness
does not like to give me the government you promised, God made me
without it, and maybe your not giving it to me will be all the
better for my conscience, for fool as I am I know the proverb 'to
her hurt the ant got wings,' and it may be that Sancho the squire will
get to heaven sooner than Sancho the governor. 'They make as good
bread here as in France,' and 'by night all cats are grey,' and 'a
hard case enough his, who hasn't broken his fast at two in the
afternoon,' and 'there's no stomach a hand's breadth bigger than
another,' and the same can he filled 'with straw or hay,' as the
saying is, and 'the little birds of the field have God for their
purveyor and caterer,' and 'four yards of Cuenca frieze keep one
warmer than four of Segovia broad-cloth,' and 'when we quit this world
and are put underground the prince travels by as narrow a path as
the journeyman,' and 'the Pope's body does not take up more feet of
earth than the sacristan's,' for all that the one is higher than the
other; for when we go to our graves we all pack ourselves up and
make ourselves small, or rather they pack us up and make us small in
spite of us, and then- good night to us. And I say once more, if
your ladyship does not like to give me the island because I'm a
fool, like a wise man I will take care to give myself no trouble about
it; I have heard say that 'behind the cross there's the devil,' and
that 'all that glitters is not gold,' and that from among the oxen,
and the ploughs, and the yokes, Wamba the husbandman was taken to be
made King of Spain, and from among brocades, and pleasures, and
riches, Roderick was taken to be devoured by adders, if the verses
of the old ballads don't lie."

"To be sure they don't lie!" exclaimed Dona Rodriguez, the duenna,
who was one of the listeners. "Why, there's a ballad that says they
put King Rodrigo alive into a tomb full of toads, and adders, and
lizards, and that two days afterwards the king, in a plaintive, feeble
voice, cried out from within the tomb-

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