Don Quixote By Miguel de Cervantes Part 2: Chapter VII-VIII

When Sancho heard his master's firm, resolute language, a cloud came over the sky with him and the wings of his heart drooped, for he had made sure that his master would not go without him for all the wealth of the world; and as he stood there dumbfoundered and moody, Samson Carrasco came in with the housekeeper and niece, who were anxious to hear by what arguments he was about to dissuade their master from going to seek adventures. The arch wag Samson came forward, and embracing him as he had done before, said with a loud voice, "O flower of knight-errantry! O shining light of arms! O honour and mirror of the Spanish nation! may God Almighty in his infinite power grant that any person or persons, who would impede or hinder thy third sally, may find no way out of the labyrinth of their schemes, nor ever accomplish what they most desire!" And then, turning to the housekeeper, he said, "Mistress housekeeper may just as well give over saying the prayer of Santa Apollonia, for I know it is the positive determination of the spheres that Senor Don Quixote shall proceed to put into execution his new and lofty designs; and I should lay a heavy burden on my conscience did I not urge and persuade this knight not to keep the might of his strong arm and the virtue of his valiant spirit any longer curbed and checked, for by his inactivity he is defrauding the world of the redress of wrongs, of the protection of orphans, of the honour of virgins, of the aid of widows, and of the support of wives, and other matters of this kind appertaining, belonging, proper and peculiar to the order of knight-errantry. On, then, my lord Don Quixote, beautiful and brave, let your worship and highness set out to-day rather than to-morrow; and if anything be needed for the execution of your purpose, here am I ready in person and purse to supply the want; and were it requisite to attend your magnificence as squire, I should esteem it the happiest good fortune."

At this, Don Quixote, turning to Sancho, said, "Did I not tell thee, Sancho, there would be squires enough and to spare for me? See now who offers to become one; no less than the illustrious bachelor Samson Carrasco, the perpetual joy and delight of the courts of the Salamancan schools, sound in body, discreet, patient under heat or cold, hunger or thirst, with all the qualifications requisite to make a knight-errant's squire! But heaven forbid that, to gratify my own inclination, I should shake or shatter this pillar of letters and vessel of the sciences, and cut down this towering palm of the fair and liberal arts. Let this new Samson remain in his own country, and, bringing honour to it, bring honour at the same time on the grey heads of his venerable parents; for I will be content with any squire that comes to hand, as Sancho does not deign to accompany me."

"I do deign," said Sancho, deeply moved and with tears in his eyes; "it shall not be said of me, master mine," he continued, "'the bread eaten and the company dispersed.' Nay, I come of no ungrateful stock, for all the world knows, but particularly my own town, who the Panzas from whom I am descended were; and, what is more, I know and have learned, by many good words and deeds, your worship's desire to show me favour; and if I have been bargaining more or less about my wages, it was only to please my wife, who, when she sets herself to press a point, no hammer drives the hoops of a cask as she drives one to do what she wants; but, after all, a man must be a man, and a woman a woman; and as I am a man anyhow, which I can't deny, I will be one in my own house too, let who will take it amiss; and so there's nothing more to do but for your worship to make your will with its codicil in such a way that it can't be provoked, and let us set out at once, to save Senor Samson's soul from suffering, as he says his conscience obliges him to persuade your worship to sally out upon the world a third time; so I offer again to serve your worship faithfully and loyally, as well and better than all the squires that served knights-errant in times past or present."

The bachelor was filled with amazement when he heard Sancho's phraseology and style of talk, for though he had read the first part of his master's history he never thought that he could be so droll as he was there described; but now, hearing him talk of a "will and codicil that could not be provoked," instead of "will and codicil that could not be revoked," he believed all he had read of him, and set him down as one of the greatest simpletons of modern times; and he said to himself that two such lunatics as master and man the world had never seen. In fine, Don Quixote and Sancho embraced one another and made friends, and by the advice and with the approval of the great Carrasco, who was now their oracle, it was arranged that their departure should take place three days thence, by which time they could have all that was requisite for the journey ready, and procure a closed helmet, which Don Quixote said he must by all means take. Samson offered him one, as he knew a friend of his who had it would not refuse it to him, though it was more dingy with rust and mildew than bright and clean like burnished steel.

The curses which both housekeeper and niece poured out on the bachelor were past counting; they tore their hair, they clawed their faces, and in the style of the hired mourners that were once in fashion, they raised a lamentation over the departure of their master and uncle, as if it had been his death. Samson's intention in persuading him to sally forth once more was to do what the history relates farther on; all by the advice of the curate and barber, with whom he had previously discussed the subject. Finally, then, during those three days, Don Quixote and Sancho provided themselves with what they considered necessary, and Sancho having pacified his wife, and Don Quixote his niece and housekeeper, at nightfall, unseen by anyone except the bachelor, who thought fit to accompany them half a league out of the village, they set out for El Toboso, Don Quixote on his good Rocinante and Sancho on his old Dapple, his alforjas furnished with certain matters in the way of victuals, and his purse with money that Don Quixote gave him to meet emergencies. Samson embraced him, and entreated him to let him hear of his good or evil fortunes, so that he might rejoice over the former or condole with him over the latter, as the laws of friendship required. Don Quixote promised him he would do so, and Samson returned to the village, and the other two took the road for the great city of El Toboso.

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After the misadventure with the windmills, Don Quixote




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