Gavilan College celebrates 400 years of Don Quijote

The History of Don Quixote - The Second Part

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The History of the
Valorous & Witty Knight-Errant Don Quixote of the Mancha

By Miguel de Cervantes, Translated by Thomas Shelton

The Second Part

CHAPTER II: Of the Notable Fray that Sancho Panza had with the Niece
and the Old Woman, and other Delightful Passages

 

The story says, that the noise which Don Quixote, the vicar, and the barber heard was of the niece and the old woman, that were rating Sancho Panza, that strove with them for entrance to see Don Quixote, who kept the door against him. ‘What will this bloodhound have here?’ said they; ‘get you home to your own house, for you are he, and none else, that doth distract and ringlead our master, and carry him astray.’ To which quoth Sancho, ‘Woman of Satan, I am he that is distracted, ringled, and carried astray, and not your master; ‘twas he that led me up and down the world, and you deceive yourselves and understand by halves. He drew me from my house with his conycatching, promising me an island, which I yet hope for.’ ‘A plague of your islands,’ replied the niece, ‘cursed Sancho! And what be your islands? is it anything to eat, goodman glutton, you cormorant, as you are?’ ‘‘Tis not to eat,’ quoth Sancho, ‘but to rule and govern, better than four cities, or four of the king’s judges.’ ‘For all that,’ said the old woman, ‘you come not in here, you bundle of mischief and sack of wickedness: get you home and govern there, and sow your grain, and leave seeking after islands or dilands.’ The vicar and the barber took great delight to hear this dialogue between the three; but Don Quixote, fearing lest Sancho should out with all, and should blunder out a company of malicious fooleries, or should touch upon points that might not be for his reputation, he called him to him, and commanded the women to be silent, and to let him in. Sancho entered, and the vicar and barber took leave of Don Quixote, of whose recovery they despaired, seeing how much he was bent upon his wild thoughts, and how much he was besotted with his damned knights-errant. ‘So,’ quoth the vicar to the barber, ‘you shall quickly, gossip, perceive, when we least think of it, that our gallant takes his flight again by the river.’ ‘No doubt,’ said the barber; ‘but I wonder not so much at the knight’s madness, as the squire’s simplicity, that believes so in the islands, and I think all the art in the world will not drive that out of his noddle.’ ‘God mend them,’ said the vicar, ‘and let us expect what issue the multitude of this knight and squire’s absurdities will have; for it seems they were both framed out of one forge, as it were, for the master’s madness, without the servant’s folly, is not worth a chip.’ ‘‘Tis true,’ said the barber, ‘and I should be glad to know their present discourse.’ ‘I warrant,’ said the vicar, ‘the niece and old woman will tell us all when they have done, for they are not so mannerly as not to hearken.’

In the interim, Don Quixote locked in Sancho, and thus discoursed with him: ‘I am very sorry, Sancho, you should affirm and make good that I was he that drew you from your dog-hole cottage, knowing that I willingly left mine, a palace in comparison. We went out jointly, so we marched on, and so we held our whole peregrination, both of us having undergone the same lot, the same fortune; and, if once thou wast tossed in a blanket, I have been banged an hundred times, and herein have I the advantage of thee.’ ‘Why, it was very fit,’ answered Sancho, ‘for, as you hold, misfortunes are more annexed to knights-errant than to their squires.’ ‘Thou art deceived, Sancho,’ quoth Don Quixote; ‘for, according to the saying, “Quando caput dolet,” etc.’— ‘I understand no other language but mine own,’ said Sancho. ‘Why, I mean,’ replied Don Quixote, ‘that when the head aches all the body is out of tune; so that I, being thy lord and master, am thy head, and thou a part of me, since thou art my servant, in which respect the ill that toucheth me must concern and grieve thee, and so thine me.’ ‘Indeed,’ quoth Sancho, ‘it ought to be so; but when I was tossed in the blanket, my head stood aloof, like a part, beholding me fly in the air, without any feeling [of] my grief; and, since the members are bound to suffer for the head, the head in requital should also suffer for them.’ ‘You mean, Sancho,’ quoth Don Quixote, ‘that I had no feeling of your being tossed? And, if you mean so, do not, neither imagine any such thing; for at that time I was more vexed in spirit than thou couldst be in body. But leave we this for the present, for we shall have leisure to consider and rectify it, and tell me, friend Sancho, what say the common people of me? In what estimation do the gentlemen hold me? In what the knights and gallants? What say they of my valour? what of my exploits? what of my affability? what discourse they touching my plot in raising and restoring to the world the long-forgotten order of knight-errantry? To conclude, I would have thee tell me all that thou hast heard: and you must tell we without adding to my praise or diminishing my dispraise, for it is the part of loyal servants to tell the naked truth to their masters, in its native colour, without increasing it by flattery or diminishing it for any other vain respect. And I would have thee, Sancho, learn by the way that, if the naked truth should come to the ears of princes, without the apparel of flattery, we should have another manner of world, and other ages would be called iron, and not ours, and this would be the golden age. And let me advise thee, Sancho, that well and discreetly thou tell me the truth of what thou knowest, concerning my demand.’ ‘I shall, with a very good will, sir,’ quoth Sancho, ‘upon condition that you shall not be angry at what I shall tell you, since you will have the naked truth, without any other clothing than what I have seen her with.’ ‘By no means will I be angry,’ answered Don Quixote; ‘thou mayst speak freely, Sancho, and without any disguise.’ ‘Why, then, first of all I must tell you, the common people hold you for a notable madman, and that I am no less [a] coxcomb. The ordinary gentlemen say that, not containing yourself within the limits of gentry, you will needs be-don yourself, and be a man of honour, having but three or four acres of land, and a rag before and another behind. The knights say they would not have your poor squires be ranked with them that clout their own shoes, and take up a stitch in their own black stockings with green silk.’ ‘That concerns not me, quoth Don Quixote, ‘for thou seest that I go always well clad, and never patched: indeed a little torn sometimes, but more with my armour than by long wearing.’ ‘Concerning your valour,’ quoth Sancho, ‘your affability, your exploits, and your plot, there be different opinions: some say you are a madman, but a merry one; others that you are valiant, but withal unfortunate; a third sort, that you are affable, but impertinent; and thus they descant upon us, that they leave neither you nor me a sound bone.’ ‘Why, look thou, Sancho,’ quoth Don Quixote; ‘wheresoever virtue is eminent it is persecuted; few or none of those brave heroes that have lived have scaped malicious calumniation. Julius Caesar, that most courageous, most wise, most valiant captain, was noted to be ambitious, and to be somewhat slovenly in his apparel and his conditions; Alexander, who for his exploits obtained the title of Great, is said to have been given to drunkenness; Hercules, he with his many labours, was said to have been lascivious and a striker; Don Galaor, brother to Amadis de Gaul, was grudged at for being offensive, and his brother for a sheep-biter. So that, Sancho, since so many worthy men have been calumniated, I may well suffer mine, if it have been no more than thou tellest me.’ ‘Why, there’s the quiddity of the matter, body of my father!’ quoth Sancho. ‘Was there any more said then?’ quoth Don Quixote. ‘There’s more behind yet,’ said Sancho; ‘all that was said hitherto is cakes and whitebread to this. But, if you will know all concerning these calumnies, I’ll bring you one hither by and by that shall tell ‘em you all without missing a scrap; for last night Bartholomew Carrasco’s son arrived, that comes from study from Salamanca, and hath proceeded bachelor, and, as I went to bid him welcome home, he told me that your history was in print, under the title of The Most Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote de la Mancha; and he tells me that I am mentioned too, by mine own name of Sancho Panza, and Dulcinea del Toboso is in too, and other matters that passed betwixt us, at which I was amazed, and blessed myself how the historian that wrote them could come to the knowledge of them.’ ‘Assure thee, Sancho,’ said Don Quixote, ‘the author of our history is some sage enchanter: for such are not ignorant of all secrets they write.’ ‘Well,’ said Sancho, ‘if he were wise and an enchanter, I will tell you according as Samson Carrasco told me, — for that’s the man’s name that spoke with me, — that the author’s name of this history is Cid Hamet Beregena.’1 ‘That is the name of a Moor,’ said Don Quixote. ‘It is very like,’ quoth Sancho, ‘for your Moors are great lovers of Berengens.’2 ‘Sancho,’ said Don Quixote, ‘you are out in the Moor’s surname, which is Cid Hamet Benengeli; and Cid in the Arabic signifieth Lord.’ ‘It may be so, quoth Sancho, ‘but, if you will have the bachelor come to you, I’ll bring him to you flying.’ ‘Friend,’ quoth Don Quixote, ‘thou shalt do me a special pleasure; for I am in suspense with what thou hast told me, and will not eat a bit till I am informed of all.’ ‘Well, I go for him,’ said Sancho. And, leaving his master a while, went for the bachelor, with whom after he returned, and the three had a passing pleasant dialogue.
 

1 It should be Benengeli, but Sancho simply mistakes, as followeth in the next note.
2 Berengena is a fruit in Spain which they boil with sod meat, as we do carrots, and here was Sancho’s simplicity in mistaking, and to think that name was given the author for loving the fruit.

Gavilan College celebrates 400 years of Don Quijote

The History of Don Quixote - The Second Part

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