Don Quixote de la Mancha

By Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra; E. C. Riley et al. | Go to book overview

been incapacitated for ever from taking the degree of licentiate, not finding so much as nests, where he thought to find birds.

Tom Cecial, seeing how ill they had sped, and the unlucky issue of their expedition, said to the bachelor:

'For certain, Señor Sampson Carrasco, we have been very rightly served. It is easy to design and begin an enterprise, but very often difficult to get through with it. Don Quixote is mad, and we think ourselves wise: he gets off sound and laughing, and your worship remains sore and sorrowful. Now, pray, which is the greater madman, he who is so because he cannot help it, or he who is so on purpose?'

To which Sampson answered:

'The difference between these two sorts of madmen, is, that he, who cannot help being mad, will always be so; and he, who plays the fool on purpose, may give over when he thinks fit.'

'If it be so,' quoth Tom Cecial, 'I was mad when I had a mind to be your worship's squire, and now I have a mind to be so no longer, and to get me home to my house.'

'It is fit you should,' answered Sampson; 'but to think that I will return to mine, till I have soundly banged this same Don Quixote, is to be greatly mistaken; and it is not now the desire of curing him of his madness that prompts me to seek him, but a desire of being revenged on him; for the pain of my ribs will not let me entertain more charitable considerations.'

Thus they two went on discoursing, till they came to a village, when they luckily met with a bone-setter, who cured the unfortunate Sampson. Tom Cecial went back and left him, and he stayed behind meditating revenge; and the history speaks of him again in due time, not omitting to rejoice at present with Don Quixote.


CHAPTER 16
Of what befell Don Quixote with a discreet gentleman of La Mancha.

DON QUIXOTE pursued his journey with the pleasure, satisfaction, and self-conceit already mentioned, imagining, upon account of his late victory, that he was the most valiant knight-errant the world could boast of in that age. He looked upon all the adventures, which

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