Gavilan College celebrates 400 years of Don Quijote

Don Quixote de la Mancha, translated by Charles Jarvis

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-[313]-

The Life and Exploits
of the Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote de la Mancha

By Miguel de Cervantes, Translated by Charles Jarvis, Esq.

The Second Part
 

CHAPTER V: Of the wise and pleasant Discourse which passed between Sancho Panza and his Wife Teresa Panza.

 

The translator of this history, coming to write this fifth chapter, says, he takes it to be apocryphal, because in it Sancho talks in another style than could be expected from his shallow understanding, and says such subtile -[314]- things, that he reckons impossible that he should know them; nevertheless, he would not omit translating them, to comply with the duty of his office, and so went on, saying:

Sancho came home so gay and so merry, that his wife perceived his joy a bow-shot off, insomuch that she could not but ask him, "What is the matter, friend Sancho, you are so merry?" To which he answered, "Dear wife, if it were God's will, I should be very glad not to be so well pleased as I appear to be." "Husband," replied she, "I understand you not, and know not what you mean by saying you should be glad, if it were God's will, you were not so much pleased: now, silly as I am, I cannot guess how one can take pleasure in not being pleased." "Look you, Teresa," answered Sancho, "I am thus merry because I am resolved to return to the service of my master Don Quixote, who is determined to make a third sally in quest of adventures; and I am to accompany him, for so my necessity will have it; besides, I am pleased with the hopes of finding the other hundred crowns, like those we have spent; though it grieves me that I must part from you and my children; and if God would be pleased to give me bread, dry-shod and at home, without dragging me over rough and smooth, and through thick and thin, which he might do at a small expense, and by only willing it so, it is plain my joy would be more firm and solid, since it is now mingled with sorrow for leaving you; so that I said right when I said I should be glad, if it were God's will, I were not so well pleased." "Look you, Sancho," replied Teresa, "ever since you have been a member of a knight-errant, you talk in such a roundabout manner, that there is nobody understands you." "It is enough that God understands me, wife," answered Sancho; "for he is the understander of all things; and so much for that: and do you hear, sister, it is convenient you should take more than ordinary care of Dapple these three days, that he may be in a condition to bear arms; double his allowance, and get the pack-saddle in order, and the rest of his tackling; for we are not going to a wedding, but to roam about the world, and to have now and then a bout at give and take with giants, fiery dragons, and goblins, and to hear hissings, roarings, bellowings, and bleatings; all which would be but flowers of lavender if we had not to do with Yangueses and enchanted Moors." "I believe indeed, husband," replied Teresa, "that your squires-errant do not eat their bread for nothing, and therefore I shall not fail to beseech our Lord to deliver you speedily from so much evil hap." "I tell you, wife," answered Sancho, "that, did I not expect ere long to see myself a governor of an island, I should drop down dead upon the spot." "Not so, my dear husband!" answered Teresa. "Let the hen live, though it be with the pip. Live you, and the devil take all the governments in the world. Without a government you came from your mother's womb; without a government have you lived hitherto; and without a government will you go or be carried to your grave, whenever it shall please God. How many folks are there in the world that have not a government! and yet they live for all that, and are reckoned in the number of the people. The best sauce in the world is hunger, and, as that is never wanting to the poor, they always eat with a relish. But if, perchance, Sancho, you should get a government, do not forget me and your children. Consider that little Sancho is just fifteen years old, and it is fit he should go to school, if so be his uncle the abbot means to breed him up to the Church. Consider also, that Mary Sancha, your daughter, will not break her heart if we marry her; for I am mistaken if she has not as much mind to a husband -[315]- as you have to a government; and indeed, indeed, better a daughter but indifferently married than well kept."

"In good faith," answered Sancho "If God be so good to me, that I get anything like a government, dear wife, I will match Mary Sancha so highly that there will be no coming near her without calling her Your Ladyship." "Not so, Sancho," answered Teresa; "the best way is to marry her to her equal; for if, instead of pattens, you put her on clogs, and, instead of her russet petticoat of fourteen-penny stuff, you give her a farthingale and petticoats of silk, and, instead of plain Molly and You, she be called My Lady Such-a-one and Your Ladyship, the girl will not know where she is, and will fall into a thousand mistakes at every step, discovering the coarse thread of her home-spun country-stuff." "Peace, fool!" quoth Sancho; "for all the business is to practise two or three years, and after that the ladyship and the gravity will sit upon her as if they were made for her; and if not, what matters it? Let her be a lady, and come what will of it." "Measure yourself by your condition, Sancho," answered Teresa; "seek not to raise yourself higher, and remember the proverb, Wipe your neighbour's son's nose, and take him into your house.(136) It would be a pretty business truly to marry our Mary to some great count or knight, who, when the fancy takes him, would look upon her as some strange thing, and be calling her country wench, clod-breaker's brat, and I know not what; not while I live, husband; I have not brought up my child to be so used. Do you provide money, Sancho, and leave the matching of her to my care; for there is Lope Tocho, John Tocho's son, a lusty hale young man, whom we know, and I am sure he has a sneaking kindness for the girl; she will be very well married to him, considering he is our equal, and will be always under our eye; and we shall be all as one, parents and children, grandsons and sons-in-law, and so the peace and blessing of God will be among us all: and do not you pretend to be marrying her now at your courts and great palaces, where they will neither understand her, nor she understand herself." "Hark you, beast, and wife for Barabbas," replied Sancho; "why would you now, without rhyme or reason, hinder me from marrying our daughter with one who may bring me grandchildren that may be styled Your Lordships? Look you, Teresa, I have always heard my betters say, 'he that will not when he may, when he will he shall have nay;' and it would be very wrong, now that fortune is knocking at our door, to shut it against her: let us spread our sails to the favourable gale that now blows." This kind of language, and what Sancho says farther below, made the translator of this history say, he takes this chapter to be apocryphal.

"Do you think, animal," continued Sancho, "that it would be well for me to be really possessed of some beneficial government, that may lift us out of the dirt, and enable me to match Mary Sancha to whom I pleased? You will then see how people will call you Donna Teresa Panza; and you will sit in the church with velvet cushions, carpets, and tapestries, in spite of the best gentlewomen of the parish. Continue as you are, and be always the same thing, without being increased or diminished, like a figure in the hangings! No, no; let us have no more of this, pray; for little Sancha shall be a countess, in spite of your teeth." "For all that, husband," answered Teresa, "I am afraid this courtship will be my daughter's undoing. But, what you please: make her a duchess or a princess; but I can tell you, It shall never be with my good-will or consent. -[316]- I was always a lover of equality, and cannot abide to see folks taking state upon themselves. Teresa my parents named me at the font, a plain simple name, without the additions, laces, or garnitures of dons or donnas. My father's name was Cascajo; and I, by being your wife, am called Teresa Panza, though indeed by good right I should be called Teresa Cascajo. But the laws follow still the prince's will. I am contented with this name, without the additional weight of Donna, to make it so heavy that I shall not be able to carry it; and I would not have people, when they see me decked out like any little countess or governess, immediately say, Look, how stately Madam Hogfeeder moves! Yesterday she toiled at her distaff from morning to night, and went to mass with the tail of her petticoat over her head instead of a veil; and to-day, for sooth, she goes with her farthingale, her embroideries, and with an air as if we did not know her. God keep me in my seven, or my five senses, or as many as I have; for I do not intend to expose myself after this manner. Go you, brother, to your governing and islanding, and puff yourself up as you please; as for my girl and I, by the life of my mother, we will neither of us stir a step from our own town. The honest woman, like her whose leg is broken, is always at home, and the virtuous damsel loves to be employed. Go you with your Don Quixote to your adventures, and leave us with our ill fortunes; God will better them for us, if we deserve it; and truly I cannot imagine who made him a Don; a title which neither his father nor his grandfather ever had." "Certainly," replied Sancho, "you must have some familiar in that body of yours. Heaven bless thee, woman! what a parcel of things have you been stringing one upon another, without either head or tail! What has Cascajo, the embroideries, or the proverbs, to do with what I am saying? Hark you, fool and ignorant! (for so I may call you), since you understand not what I say, and are flying from good fortune, had I told you that our daughter was to throw herself headlong from some high tower, or go strolling about the world, as did the Infanta Donna Urraca, you would be in the right not to come into my opinion; but if, in two turns of a hand, and less than one twinkling of an eye, I can equip her with a Don and Your Ladyship, and raise from the straw to sit under a canopy of state, and upon a sofa with more velvet cushions than all the Almohadas(137) of Morocco had Moors in their lineage, why will you not consent, and desire what I do?" "Would you know why; husband?" answered Teresa. "It is because of the proverb, which says, He that covers thee, discovers thee. All glance their eyes hastily over the poor man, and fix them upon the rich; and if that rich man was once poor, then there is work for your murmurers and backbiters, who swarm everywhere like bees." "Look you, Teresa," answered Sancho, "and listen to what I am going to say to you; perhaps you have never heard it in all the days of your life; and I do not now speak of my own head; for all that I intend to say are sentences of that good father, the preacher who held forth to us last Lent in this village; who, if I remember right, said, that all the things present, which our eyes behold, do appear and exist in our minds much better and with greater force than things past." All these reasonings of Sancho still more incline the translator to think that this chapter is apocryphal, as exceeding the capacity of Sancho, who went on, saying:

"From hence it proceeds, that, when we see any person finely dressed, and set off with rich apparel and with a train of servants, we are, as it were, compelled to show him respect, although the memory, in that instant, -[317]- recalls to our thoughts some mean circumstances under which we have seen him; which meanness, whether it be of poverty or descent, being already past, no longer exists, and there remains only what we see present before our eyes. And if this person, whom fortune has raised from the obscurity of his native meanness, proves well-behaved, liberal, and courteous to everybody, and does not set himself to vie with the ancient nobility, be assured, Teresa, that nobody will remember what he was, but will reverence what he is, excepting the envious, from whom no prosperous fortune is secure." "I do not understand you, husband," replied Teresa: "do what you think fit, and break not my brains any more with your speeches and flourishes. And if you are revolved to do as you say " "Resolved, you should say, wife," quoth Sancho, "and not revolved." "Set not yourself to dispute with me," answered Teresa; "I speak as it pleases God, and meddle not with what does not concern me. I say, if you hold still in the same mind of being a governor, take your son Sancho with you, and henceforward train 'him up to your art of government; for it is fitting the sons should inherit and learn their fathers' calling." "When I have a government," quoth Sancho, "I will send for him by the post, and will send you money, which I shall not want; for there are always people enough to lend governors money when they have it not; but then be sure to clothe the boy so, that he may look, not like what he is, but what he is to be." "Send you money," replied Teresa, "and I will equip him as fine as a palm-branch.(138)" "We are agreed then," quoth Sancho, "that our daughter is to be a countess?" "The day that 1 see her a countess," answered Teresa, "I shall reckon I am laying her in her grave; but I say again, you may do as you please; for we women are born to bear the clog of obedience to our husbands, be they never such blockheads." And then she began to weep as bitterly as if she already saw little Sancha dead and buried. Sancho comforted her, and promised, that though he must make her a countess, he would see and put it off as long as he possibly could. Thus ended their dialogue, and Sancho went back to visit Don Quixote, and put things in order for their departure.

 

Gavilan College celebrates 400 years of Don Quijote

Don Quixote de la Mancha, translated by Charles Jarvis

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