Gargantua and Pantagruel eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 952 pages of information about Gargantua and Pantagruel.

Chapter 2.XXXII.

How Pantagruel with his tongue covered a whole army, and what the author saw in his mouth.

Thus, as Pantagruel with all his army had entered into the country of the Dipsodes, everyone was glad of it, and incontinently rendered themselves unto him, bringing him out of their own good wills the keys of all the cities where he went, the Almirods only excepted, who, being resolved to hold out against him, made answer to his heralds that they would not yield but upon very honourable and good conditions.

What! said Pantagruel, do they ask any better terms than the hand at the pot and the glass in their fist?  Come, let us go sack them, and put them all to the sword.  Then did they put themselves in good order, as being fully determined to give an assault, but by the way, passing through a large field, they were overtaken with a great shower of rain, whereat they began to shiver and tremble, to crowd, press, and thrust close to one another.  When Pantagruel saw that, he made their captains tell them that it was nothing, and that he saw well above the clouds that it would be nothing but a little dew; but, howsoever, that they should put themselves in order, and he would cover them.  Then did they put themselves in a close order, and stood as near to (each) other as they could, and Pantagruel drew out his tongue only half-way and covered them all, as a hen doth her chickens.  In the meantime, I, who relate to you these so veritable stories, hid myself under a burdock-leaf, which was not much less in largeness than the arch of the bridge of Montrible, but when I saw them thus covered, I went towards them to shelter myself likewise; which I could not do, for that they were so, as the saying is, At the yard’s end there is no cloth left.  Then, as well as I could, I got upon it, and went along full two leagues upon his tongue, and so long marched that at last I came into his mouth.  But, O gods and goddesses! what did I see there?  Jupiter confound me with his trisulc lightning if I lie!  I walked there as they do in Sophia (at) Constantinople, and saw there great rocks, like the mountains in Denmark—­I believe that those were his teeth.  I saw also fair meadows, large forests, great and strong cities not a jot less than Lyons or Poictiers.  The first man I met with there was a good honest fellow planting coleworts, whereat being very much amazed, I asked him, My friend, what dost thou make here?  I plant coleworts, said he.  But how, and wherewith? said I. Ha, sir, said he, everyone cannot have his ballocks as heavy as a mortar, neither can we be all rich.  Thus do I get my poor living, and carry them to the market to sell in the city which is here behind.  Jesus! said I, is there here a new world?  Sure, said he, it is never a jot new, but it is commonly reported that, without this, there is an earth, whereof the inhabitants enjoy the light of a sun and a moon,

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Gargantua and Pantagruel from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.