Don Quixote de la Mancha

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

aside, and wrote a letter to a friend of his at Barcelona, acquainting him that the famous Don Quixote de la Mancha, that knight-errant of whom so many things were reported, was in his company; giving him to understand, that he was the pleasantest and most ingenious person in the world; and that, four days after, on the feast of St John the Baptist,* he would appear on the strand of the city, armed at all points, mounted on his horse Rosinante, and his squire Sancho upon an ass; desiring him to give notice thereof to his friends the Niarros, that they might make themselves merry with him: and expressing his wishes, that his enemies the Cadells* might not partake of the diversion; though that was impossible, because the wild extravagances and distraction of Don Quixote, together with the witty sayings of his squire Sancho Panza, could not fail to give general pleasure to all the world. He dispatched this epistle by one of his squires, who, changing the habit of an outlaw for that of a peasant, entered into Barcelona, and delivered it into the hands of the person it was directed to.


CHAPTER 61
Of what befell Don Quixote at his entrance into Barcelona, with other events more true than ingenious.

THREE days and three nights Don Quixote stayed with Roque: and, had he stayed three hundred years, he would not have wanted subject matter for observation and admiration in his way of life. Here they lodge, there they dine: one while they fly, not knowing from whom; another, they lie in wait they know not for whom. They slept standing, with interrupted slumbers, and shifting from one place to another; they were perpetually sending out spies, posting sentinels, blowing the matches of their muskets, though they had but few, most of them making use of firelocks. Roque passed the nights apart from his followers, in places to them unknown: for the many proclamations the viceroy of Barcelona* had published against him, kept him in fear and disquiet, not daring to trust anybody, and apprehensive lest his own men should either kill or deliver him up to justice, for the price set upon his head: a life truly miserable and irksome.

In short, Roque, Don Quixote, and Sancho, attended by six squires, set out for Barcelona, through unfrequented ways, short

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