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 LX: What happened to Don Quixote, going to Barcelona

 

THE morning was cool, and the day promised no less, when Don Quixote left the inn, informing himself first which was the ready way to Barcelona, without coming to Saragosa; such was the desire he had to prove the new historian a liar, who, they said, dispraised him so much. It fell out so that in six days there fell out nothing worth writing to him; at the end of which he was benighted, going out of his way, in a thicket of oaks or cork-trees; for in this Cid Hamet is not so punctual as in other matters he useth to be.

The master and man alighted from their beasts, and, setting themselves at the trees’ roots, Sancho, that had had his bever that day, entered roundly the gates of sleep; but Don Quixote, whom imagination kept awake much more than hunger, could not join his eyes, but rather was busying his thoughts in a thousand several places: sometimes he thought he found himself in Montesinos’ Cave, and that he saw Dulcinea, converted into a country-wench, leap upon her ass-colt; now the sage Merlin’s words rang in his ears, repeating unto him the conditions that were to be observed for her disenchanting; he was stark mad to see Sancho’s laziness and want of charity; for, as he thought, he had only given himself five stripes, a poor and unequal number to those behind, and he was so grieved and enraged with this, that he framed this discourse to himself:

‘If Alexander the Great did cut the Gordian knot, saying, “Cutting and undoing is all one,” and yet, for all that, was lord of all Asia, no otherwise may it happen in the disenchanting of Dulcinea, if I should whip Sancho, volens nolens; or if the condition of this remedy be that Sancho receive three thousand and so many jerks, what care I whether he give them or that another do, since the substance is in him that gives them, come they by what means they will?’

With this imagination he came to Sancho; having first taken Rozinante’s reins, and so fitted them that he might lash him with them, he began to untruss his points: the opinion is, that he had but one before, which held up his galligaskins. But he was no sooner approached, when Sancho awaked and came to himself, and said, ‘Who is that? Who is it toucheth and untrusseth me?’ ‘‘Tis I,’ quoth Don Quixote, ‘that come to supply thy defects, and to remedy my troubles. I come to whip thee, Sancho, and to discharge the debt in part thou standest obliged in. Dulcinea perisheth, thou livest carelessly, I die desiring; and therefore untruss thyself willingly, or have a mind in these deserts to give thee at least two thousand lashes.’

‘Not so,’ quoth Sancho; ‘pray be quiet; and if not, I protest, deaf men shall hear us. The stripes in which I engaged myself must be voluntary, and not enforced, and at this time I have no mind to whip myself; ‘tis enough that I give you my word to beat myself, and fly-flap me when I have a disposition to it.’

‘There’s no leaving of it to thy courtesy, Sancho,’ quoth Don Quixote, ‘for thou art hard-hearted, and though a clown, yet tender of flesh’; and so he contended and strove to unlace him; which when Sancho Panza saw, he stood to it, and, setting upon his master, closed with him, and, tripping up his heels, cast him upon his back on the ground; he put his right knee upon his breast, and with his hands held his, so that he neither let him stir nor breathe.

Don Quixote cried out, ‘How now, traitor! rebellest thou against thy natural lord and master? presumest thou against him that feeds thee?’ ‘I neither make king nor depose king,’ quoth Sancho; ‘I only help myself that am mine own lord. Promise me you, sir, that you will be quiet, and not meddle with whipping of me now, and I’ll set you loose and free; and if not, here thou diest, traitor, enemy to Donna Sancha.’ Don Quixote promised him, and swore by the life of his thoughts he would not touch so much as a hair of his head, and that he would leave his whipping himself to his own freewill and choice when he would.

Sancho gat up, and went a pretty way from him, and, going to lean to another tree, he perceived something touch him upon the head, and, lifting up his hands, he lighted on two feet of a man, with hose and shoes on: he quaked for fear, and went to another tree, and the like befel him; so he cried out, calling to Don Quixote to help him. Don Quixote did so, and asking him what had befallen him, and why he was afraid, Sancho answered that all those trees were full of men’s feet and legs. Don Quixote felt them, and fell straight into the account of what they might be, and said to Sancho, ‘Thou needest not fear, for these feet and legs thou feelest, and seest not, doubtless are of some freebooters and robbers in troops, that are hanged in these trees; for here the justice hangs them by twenty and thirty at a clap; by which I understand that I am near Barcelona’; and true it was as he supposed. They lifted up their eyes, and, to see to, the freebooters’ bodies hung as if they had been clusters upon those trees; and by this it waxed day. And if the dead men feared them, no less were they in tribulation with the sight of at least forty live sbanditi, who hemmed them in upon a sudden, bidding them, in the Catalan tongue, they should be quiet, and stand till their captain came.

Don Quixote was on foot, his horse unbridled, his lance set up against a tree, finally, void of all defence, and therefore he deemed it best to cross his hands and hold down his head, reserving himself for a better occasion and conjuncture.

The thieves came to flay Dapple, and began to leave him nothing he had, either in his wallets or cloak-bag; and it fell out well for Sancho, for the duke’s crowns were in a hollow girdle girt to him, and those likewise that he brought from, home with him; and, for all that, those good fellows would have weeded and searched him to the very entrails, if their captain had not come in the interim, who seemed to be about thirty years of age, strongly made, and somewhat of a tall stature; his look was solemn, and his complexion swarthy. He was mounted upon a powerful horse, with his steel coat on, and four petronels (called in that country pedrenales), which he wore two at each side. And now his squires (for so they call those that are in that vocation) came to make spoil of Sancho. He commanded them they should not, and he was straight obeyed, and so the girdle escaped. He wondered to see a lance reared up on a tree, a shield on the ground, and Don Quixote armed and pensative, with the saddest, melancholiest visage that sadness itself could frame. He came to him, saying, ‘Be not sad, honest man, for you have not fallen into the hands of any cruel Osiris, but into Roque Guinart’s, that have more compassion than cruelty in them.’

‘My sadness is not,’ quoth Don Quixote, ‘to have fallen into thy power, O valorous Roque, whose fame is boundless, but that my carelessness was such that thy soldiers have caught me without bridle, I being obliged, according to the order of knight-errantry, which I profess, to keep watch and ward, and at all hours to be my own sentinel; for let me tell thee, grand Roque, if they had taken me on horseback, with my lance and shield, they should not easily have made me yield; for I am Don Quixote de la Mancha, he of whose exploits all the world is full.’

Straight Roque Guinart perceived that Don Quixote’s infirmity proceeded rather of madness than valour, and though he had sometimes heard tell of him, yet he never could believe his deeds to be true, neither could he be persuaded that such a humour should reign in any man’s heart; and he was wonderfully glad to have met with him, to see by experience what he had heard say of him, and therefore he said, ‘Valorous knight, vex not yourself, neither take this fortune of yours to be sinister, for it may be that in these stumbling-blocks your crooked lot may be straightened, for Heaven doth usually raise up those that fall, and enrich the poor by strange and unseen ways, by men not imagined.’

Don Quixote was about to have rendered him thanks, when as they perceived a noise behind them, as if there had been some troop of horse, but there was but one only, upon which there came with full speed a youth, to see to, about some twenty years of age, clad in green damask his hose and loose jerkin were laid on with gold lace, with a hat turned up from his band, with close-fit boots, sword and dagger gilt, and a little birding-piece in his hand, and two pistols at his sides.

Roque turned his head to the noise, and saw this beautiful shape, who, coming near him, said, ‘In quest of thee I came, O valorous Roque, to find in thee, if not redress, at least some lightsomeness in this my misfortune. And to hold thee no longer in suspense, because I know thou knowest me not, I will tell thee who I am; that is, Claudia Jeronima, daughter to Simon Forte, thy singular friend, and only enemy to Clauquel Torellas, who is also thine, as being one of thy contrary faction. And thou knowest that this Torellas hath a son, called Don Vincente Torellas, or at least was so called, not two hours since. He then—to shorten my unfortunate tale, I will tell thee in few words what hath befallen me. He saw me, courted me; I gave ear to him, and, my father unwitting of it, I affectionated myself to him; for there is no woman, be she never so retired or looked to, but she hath time enough to put in execution and effect her hasty longing. Finally, he promised me marriage, and I gave him my word to be his; so no more passed really. Yesterday I came to know that, forgetful of his obligation, he contracted to another, and that this morning he went to be married—a news that troubled my brain, and made an end of my patience. And by reason my father was not at home, I had opportunity to put myself in this apparel thou seest, and, making speed with this horse, I overtook Don Vincente about a league from hence, and, without making any complaint, or hearing his discharge, I discharged this piece, and, to boot, these pistols, and I believe I sent two bullets into his body, making way through which my honour, enwrapped in his blood, might sally out: therefore I left him to his servants, who nor durst nor could put themselves in his defence. I came to seek thee, that thou mightst help to pass me into France, where I have kindred, with whom I may live, and withal to desire thee to defend my father, that the number of Don Vincente’s friends take not a cruel revenge upon him.’

Roque, wondering at the gallantry, bravery, handsomeness, and success of the air Claudia, said, ‘Come, gentlewoman, and let us go see if your enemy be dead, and afterward, what shall be most fitting to be done.’

Don Quixote, that hearkened attentively to all that Claudia said and Roque Guinart answered, said, ‘No man need take pains to defend this lady; let it be my charge. Give me my horse and my arms, and expect me here, and I will go seek this knight, and, alive or dead, will make him accomplish his promise to so great a beauty.’

‘No man doubt it,’ quoth Sancho, ‘for my master hath a very good hand to be a marriage-maker; and not long since he forced another to marry, that denied his promise to a maid, and had it not been that enchanters persecuted him, and changed the true shape into the shape of a lackey, by this time the said maid had been none.

Roque, that attended more to Claudia’s success than the reasons of master or man, understood them not, and so commanding his squires they should restore to Sancho all they had taken from Dapple, and commanding them likewise to retire where he lodged the night before, he went straight with all speed with Claudia to find the wounded or dead Don Vincente.

To the place they came where Claudia met him, where they found nothing but late-shed blood; but, looking round about them, they discovered some people upon the side of a hill, and they thought, as true it was, that that was Don Vincente, whom his servants carried, alive or dead, to cure, or give him burial. They hasted to overtake them, which they easily might do, the others going but softly. They found Don Vincente in his servants’ arms, whom he entreated with a weak and weary voice to let him die there, for the grief of his wounds would not suffer him to go any farther.

Claudia and Roque flung themselves from their horses, to him they came; the servants feared Roque’s presence, and Claudia was troubled to see Don Vincente; and so, betwixt mild and merciless, she came to him, and, laying hold of his hands, she said, ‘If thou hadst given me these, according to our agreement, thou hadst never come to this extremity.’ The wounded gentleman opened his half-shut eyes, and, knowing Claudia, said, ‘I well perceive, fair and deceived mistress, that thou art she that hast slain me a punishment not deserved, nor due to my desires; in which, nor in any action of mine, I never knew how to offend thee.’

‘Then belike ‘tis false that thou went’st this morning to be married to Leonora, the rich Balvastro’s daughter?’

‘No, verily,’ said Don Vincente’; ‘my ill fortune brought thee that news, that, being jealous, thou shouldst bereave me of my life; which since I leave it in thy hands, and embrace thee, I think myself most happy. And, to assure thee that this is true, take my hand, and, if thou wilt, receive me for thy husband, for I have no other satisfaction to give thee or e wrong thou thinkest I have done thee.’

Claudia wrung his hand, and herself was wrung to the very heart; so that upon Don Vincente’s blood and breast she fell into a swoon, and he into a mortal paroxysm. Roque was in amaze, and knew not what to do. The servants went to fetch water to fling in their faces, and brought it, with which they bathed them.

Claudia revived again, but Don Vincente never from his paroxysm, with which he ended his life. Which when Claudia saw, out of doubt that her husband was dead, she burst the air with her sighs, and wounded heaven with her complaints; she tore her hair, and gave it to the wind; with her own hands she disfigured her face, with all the shows of dolour and feeling that might be imagined from a grieved heart.

‘O cruel and inconsiderate woman!’ said she, ‘how easily wast thou moved to put so cruel a design in execution! O raving force of jealousy, to what desperate ends dost thou bring those that harbour thee in their breasts! O my spouse, whose unhappy fortune, for being my pledge, hath brought from bed to burial!’

Such and so sad were the complaints of Claudia, that even from Roque’s eyes drew tears, not used to shed them upon any occasion. The servants howled, and Claudia every stitch-while swooned, and the whole circuit looked like a field of sorrow and a place of misfortune.

Finally, Roque Guinart gave order to Don Vincent’s servants to carry his body to his father’s town, that was near there, to give him burial. Claudia told Roque she would go to a monastery, where an aunt of hers was abbess, where she meant to end her days, accompanied with a better and an eternal spouse.

Roque commended her good intention, and offered to accompany her whither she would, and to defend her father from [Don Vincente’s] kindred, and from all the world that would hurt him. Claudia would by no means accept of his company, and, thanking him the best she could for his offer, she took leave of him, weeping. Don Vincente’s servants bore away his body, and Roque returned to his people. And this was the end of Claudia Jeronima’s love; but no marvel if jealousy contrived the plot of her lamentable story.

Roque Guinart found his squires where he had willed them to be, and Don Quixote amongst them, upon Rozinante, making a large discourse to them, in which he persuaded them to leave that kind of life, dangerous as well for their souls as bodies; but the most of them being Gascoignes, a wild and unruly people, Don Quixote’s discourse prevailed nothing with them.

When Roque was come, he asked Sancho if they had restored his implements to him, and the prize which his soldiers had taken from Dapple. Sancho answered, Yes, only that he wanted three nightcaps, that were worth three cities. ‘What say you, fellow?’ quoth one of them: ‘I have them, and they were not worth eighteen-pence.

‘‘Tis true,’ said Don Quixote; ‘but my squire esteems them, in what he hath said, for the party’s sake that gave them me.

Roque Guinart straight commanded they should be restored; and, commanding his people to stand round, he willed them to set before them all the apparel, jewels, and money, and all that since their last sharing they had robbed: and casting up the account briefly, returning that that was not to be reparted, reducing it into money, he divided it amongst all his company so legally and wisely that he neither added nor diminished from an equal distributive justice.

This done, and all contented, satisfied, and paid, Roque said to Don Quixote, ‘If I should not be thus punctual with these fellows, there were no living with them.’ To which said Sancho, ‘By what I have here seen, justice is so good that it is fit and necessary even amongst thieves themselves.’

One of the squires heard him, and lifted up the snaphaunce of his piece, with which he had opened his mazard, if Roque Guinart had not cried out to bid him hold. Sancho was amazed, and purposed not to unsew his lips as long as he was in that company.

Now there came one or more of the squires, that were put in sentinel upon the ways, to see who passed by, and to give notice to their chief what passed, who said, ‘Sir, not far hence, by the way that goes to Barcelona, there comes a great troop of people.’ To which quoth Roque, ‘Hast thou marked whether they be of those that seek us, or those we seek?’ ‘Of the latter,’ said the squire. ‘Well, get you out all,’ quoth Roque, ‘and bring ‘em hither straight, and let not a man escape.

They did so; and Don Quixote and Roque and Sancho stayed, and expected to see what the squires brought; and, in the interim, Roque said to Don Quixote, ‘Our life will seem to be a strange kind of one to Signior Don Quixote—strange adventures, strange successes, and dangerous all; and I should not wonder that it appear so: for I can confess truly to you, there is no kind of life more unquiet, nor more full of fears, than ours. I have fallen into it by I know not what desires of revenge, that have power to trouble the most quiet hearts. I am naturally compassionate, and well-minded; but, as I have said, the desire of revenging a wrong done me doth so dash this good inclination in me that I persevere in this estate, maugre my best judgment; and as one horror brings on another, and one sin, so my revenges have been so linked together, that I not only undergo mine own, but also other men’s. But God is pleased, that though I see myself in the midst of this labyrinth of confusions, I despair not to come to a safe harbour.’

Don Quixote admired to hear from Roque such good and sound reasons; for he thought that amongst those of this profession of robbing, killing, and highway-laying, there could be none so well spoken, and answered him:

‘Signior Roque, the beginning of health consists in knowing the infirmity, and that the sick man be willing to take the medicines that the physician ordains. You are sick, you know your grief, and Heaven, or, to say truer, God who is our physician, will apply medicines that may cure you, which do heal by degrees, but not suddenly, and by miracle. Besides, sinners that have knowledge are nearer amendment than those that are without it; and since you, by your discourse, have showed your discretion, there is no more to be done, but be of good courage, and despair not of recovering your sick conscience; and if you will save a labour, and facilitate the way of your salvation, come with me, and I will teach you to be a knight-errant, and how you shall undergo so many labours and misadventures, that taking them by way of penance, you shall climb heaven in an instant.’

Roque laughed at Don Quixote’s counsel, to whom, changing their discourse, he recounted the tragical success of Claudia Jeronima; at which Sancho wept exceedingly, for the beauty, spirit, and buxomness of the wench misliked him not.

By this the squires returned with their prize, bringing with them two gentlemen on horseback, and two pilgrims on foot, and a coach full of women, and some half-dozen of servants that, on horseback and on foot, waited on them, with two mulemen that belonged to the two gentlemen. The squires brought them in triumph; the conquerors and conquered being all silent, and expecting what the grand Roque should determine; who asked the gentlemen who they were, whither they would, and what money they carried. One of them answered him, ‘Sir, we two are captains of Spanish foot, and have companies in Naples, and are going to embark ourselves in four galleys, that we hear are bound for Sicilia. We carry with us two or three hundred crowns, which we think is sufficient, as being the largest treasure incident to the ordinary penury of soldiers.’

Roque asked the pilgrims the same questions, who answered him likewise that they were to be embarked towards Rome, and that they carried a matter of thirty shillings between them both. The same he likewise desired to know of those that went in the coach, and one of them on horseback answered, ‘My Lady Donna Guiomar de Quinnones, wife to a judge of Naples, with a little girl and her maids, are they that go in the coach, and some six servants of us wait on her, and we carry six hundred pistolets in gold.’ ‘So that,’ said Roque Guinart, we have here in all nine hundred crowns and sixty ryals; my soldiers are about sixty; let us see what comes to each man’s share, for I am a bad arithmetician.’

When the thieves heard this, they cried aloud, ‘Long live Roque Guinart, in spite of the cullions that seek to destroy him!’

The captains were afflicted, the lady was sorrowful, and the pilgrims were never a whit glad, to see their goods thus confiscated. Roque awhile held them in this suspense; but he would no longer detain them in this sadness, which he might see a gunshot off in their faces, and, turning to the captains, said, ‘Captains, you shall do me the kindness as to lend me threescore ducats, and you, madam, fourscore, to content my squadron that follows me; for herein consists my revenue. And so you may pass on freely, only with a safe-conduct that I shall give you, that if you meet with any other squadrons of mine, which are divided upon these downs, they do you no hurt; for my intent is not to wrong soldiers, or any woman, especially noble.’

The captains infinitely extolled Roque’s courteous liberality for leaving them their money. The lady would have cast herself out of the coach, to kiss the grand Roque’s feet and hands; but he would by no means yield to it, rather asked pardon that he had presumed so far, which was only to comply with the obligation of his ill employment.

The lady commanded a servant of hers to give him straight fourscore ducats, which were allotted him. The captains, too, disbursed their sixty, and the pilgrims tendered their poverty; but Roque bade them be still, and, turning to his people, said, ‘Out of these crowns there are to each man two due, and there remain twenty: let the poor pilgrims have ten of them, and the other ten this honest squire, that he may speak well of this adventure.’ And so bringing him necessaries to write, of which he ever went provided, he gave them a safe-conduct to the heads of his squadrons, and, taking leave of them, let them pass free, and wondering at the nobleness of his brave and strange condition, holding him rather for a great Alexander than an open robber.

One of the thieves said, in his Catalan language, ‘This captain of ours were fitter to be a friar than a robber; and if he mean henceforward to be so liberal, let it be with his own goods, and not with ours.’ This the wretch spoke not so softly but Roque might overhear him, who, catching his sword in his hand, almost clove his pate in two, saying, ‘This is the punishment I use to saucy knaves.’ All the rest were amazed, and durst not reply a word; such was the awe in which they stood of him.

Roque then retired aside, and wrote a letter to a friend of his to Barcelona, advising him how the famous Don Quixote de la Mancha was with him, that knight-errant so notorious. And he gave him to understand that he was the most conceited understanding fellow in the world, and that about some four days after, which was Midsummer Day, he should have him upon the city-wharf, armed at all points upon his horse Rozinante, and his squire likewise upon his ass; so that he should let the Niarros his friends know so much, that they might solace themselves with him. But he could wish the Cadells his adversaries might want the pastime that the madness of Don Quixote and his conceited squire would make. He delivered the letter to one of his squires, who, changing his thief’s habit for a countryman’s, went to the city, and delivered it to whom it was directed.
 

Gavilan College celebrates 400 years of Don Quijote

The History of Don Quixote - The Second Part

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