Don Quixote - Part II (Chapter II, page 1 of 4)


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WHICH TREATS OF THE NOTABLE ALTERCATION WHICH SANCHO PANZA HAD WITH DON
QUIXOTE'S NIECE, AND HOUSEKEEPER, TOGETHER WITH OTHER DROLL MATTERS


The history relates that the outcry Don Quixote, the curate, and the
barber heard came from the niece and the housekeeper exclaiming to
Sancho, who was striving to force his way in to see Don Quixote while
they held the door against him, "What does the vagabond want in this
house? Be off to your own, brother, for it is you, and no one else, that
delude my master, and lead him astray, and take him tramping about the
country."

To which Sancho replied, "Devil's own housekeeper! it is I who am
deluded, and led astray, and taken tramping about the country, and not
thy master! He has carried me all over the world, and you are mightily
mistaken. He enticed me away from home by a trick, promising me an
island, which I am still waiting for."

"May evil islands choke thee, thou detestable Sancho," said the niece;
"What are islands? Is it something to eat, glutton and gormandiser that
thou art?"

"It is not something to eat," replied Sancho, "but something to govern
and rule, and better than four cities or four judgeships at court."

"For all that," said the housekeeper, "you don't enter here, you bag of
mischief and sack of knavery; go govern your house and dig your
seed-patch, and give over looking for islands or shylands."

The curate and the barber listened with great amusement to the words of
the three; but Don Quixote, uneasy lest Sancho should blab and blurt out
a whole heap of mischievous stupidities, and touch upon points that might
not be altogether to his credit, called to him and made the other two
hold their tongues and let him come in. Sancho entered, and the curate
and the barber took their leave of Don Quixote, of whose recovery they
despaired when they saw how wedded he was to his crazy ideas, and how
saturated with the nonsense of his unlucky chivalry; and said the curate
to the barber, "You will see, gossip, that when we are least thinking of
it, our gentleman will be off once more for another flight."

"I have no doubt of it," returned the barber; "but I do not wonder so
much at the madness of the knight as at the simplicity of the squire, who
has such a firm belief in all that about the island, that I suppose all
the exposures that could be imagined would not get it out of his head."

"God help them," said the curate; "and let us be on the look-out to see
what comes of all these absurdities of the knight and squire, for it
seems as if they had both been cast in the same mould, and the madness of
the master without the simplicity of the man would not be worth a
farthing."

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