Don Quixote de la Mancha

By Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra; Charles Jarvis et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 15
Wherein is related the unfortunate adventure which befell Don Quixote in meeting with certain bloody-minded Yangüeses.

THE sage Cid Hamet Ben Engeli relates, that when Don Quixote had taken leave of his hosts, and of all those who were present at Chrysostom's funeral, he and his squire entered the same wood into which they had seen the shepherdess Marcela enter before. And having ranged through it for above two hours, looking for her everywhere, without being able to find her, they stopped in a meadow full of fresh grass, near which ran a pleasant and refreshing brook; insomuch that it invited and compelled them to pass there the sultry hours of the noonday heat, which already began to come on with great violence. Don Quixote and Sancho alighted, and leaving the ass and Rosinante at large, to feed upon the abundance of grass that sprung in the place, they ransacked the wallet; and without any ceremony, in friendly and social wise, master and man ate what they found in it. Sancho had taken no care to fetter Rosinante, being well assured he was so tame and so little gamesome, that all the mares of the pastures of Cordova would not provoke him to any unlucky pranks. But fortune, or the devil, who is not always asleep, so ordered it, that there were grazing in that valley a parcel of Galician mares, belonging to certain Yangüesian carriers,* whose custom it is to pass the mid-day with their drove, in places where there is grass and water: and that, where Don Quixote chanced to be, was very fit for the purpose of the Yangüeses. Now it fell out, that Rosinante had a mind to solace himself with the fillies and, having them in the wind, broke out of his natural and accustomed pace, and without asking his master's leave, betook himself to a smart trot, and went to communicate his need to them. But they, as it seemed, having more inclination to feed than anything else, received him with their heels and their teeth, in such a manner, that in a little time his girths broke, and he lost his saddle. But what must have more sensibly affected him, was that the carriers, seeing the violence offered to their mares, ran to him with their pack-staves, and so belaboured him, that they laid him along on the ground in wretched plight.

By this time Don Quixote and Sancho, who had seen the drubbing

-104-

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